I found the box just sitting there, covered in half-torn feather and caking glitter, three words glued to the top MUM. It was Anna who had given me the box, on my birthday one year. She had leant up close and said "How long will you keep the box for Mum?"
"Forever," I had replied.
"Then you'll remember me forever." And the way she had said it was like I was going to forget her one day, like she was scared.
She was eight then, so young, so unknowing. I promised her I would put everything that reminded me of her in it. Over the years I filled it with her joy, just with the little things, but they were the things I held close.
Nine years later, I went to open the box, to once again see my collection. But when the lid was prised, I found it all gone, a single sheet lying on the bottom. "I don't want to be remembered anymore Mum."
Every token I had collected over the years were gone, just as she was. People would ask me what was the best thing that I could remember about her. I couldn't remember.
Now, looking at the box, I once again open it, finding the single sheet of paper still lying there. Its untouched page was still as white as it had been that many days ago.
My hand shaking, I lift it, expecting it to crumble in my touch. The words were as bright as the first time they were read. "I don't want to be remembered anymore Mum." This was the thing to her remembrance. She didn't want to be remembered. Placing the sheet back into the box, I left the house, driving down the near-empty streets to where she lay.
A stone block marked her presence, 'To be always remembered' etched in the slab. Kneeling down, box in hand, I paused. And for the last time, I remembered. The box left my grip to lie by the stone, colourful amongst the bleak.
Slowly I rose, finishing my daughter's last wish. She didn't wish to be remembered, and so, I forgot.