I had two imaginary friends growing up: Lulu and Jyson. Turns out my older sister had a couple as well: Teeman and Coca. Naturally, when my little brother came along, I assumed he would introduce us to his invisible pals. I waited. He grew. Started talking. But never mentioned his imaginary friends. Because – shocking! – little bro didn’t have any. No lack of imagination on his part; that boy has always been very good (scarily good…) at talking himself out of sticky situations. But when I asked him what his friends’ names were, he had no idea what I was talking about.
Wanting to fix what to me seemed desperately broken, I quickly bestowed three upon him: Ketchup, Mustard and Relish. But despite their great names, he wasn’t interested. He couldn’t see them, he said.
As an adult, I realize now: he had no need of them. For whatever reason – possibly my sister and I provided ample entertainment? – my brother was always perfectly at ease with the (visible) world as it was. I’ve always felt a little sorry for him, though.
May Harvey remind you of all the magic that is possible between people, both visible and invisible.
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Julie is a director, playwright and performer, recently returned from the UK where she earned her Master’s degree from the University of York. She is a three-time Jessie nominee, was an apprentice at CTF in 2005-2006, and directed the holiday hit Countryside Christmas (2011). Her play The Out Vigil recently premiered in Vancouver, and was featured in the 2015 New American Voices Festival in London’s West End. For Lulu and Jyson.