My youngest came in and asked what I was doing.
Den, I said.
I’d crawled under the coffee table in my bedroom. Only my self-cut hair and an ankle swollen from homeschool PE escaped its bounds.
You have to make it better than that, was his response. He returned with one of my Grandma’s hand-me-down sheets. Light blue – a freshly laundered sky. My childhood dens were inside bushes, under trees, they smelled of damp soil. Indoors, we made upturned furniture into tented worlds.
I stayed in my den and thought about the need to make a small space even smaller.
Claire Dean is a writer who lives in the north of England with her sons, who are 12 and 13, and her partner. All she wants to read at the moment is Moomin books.