The House I Keep is a 10 minute short film that centers around one woman's struggle to come to terms with the recent loss of a child by miscarriage.
In 2007, with one healthy two-year-old child, writer/producer/director Jhene Erwin and her husband decided it was time to have a another baby. Six weeks into her pregnancy, she miscarried. Her second miscarriage occurred at eleven weeks. What followed was a mourning process the intensity of which was most surprising to Jhene herself. A published poet, she began writing to try to come to terms with the loss. Daily life became a challenge as she struggled to reconnect to a world that held no evidence of what for her, was a seismic event. The poetry Jhene wrote serves as the film's narrative.
In The House I Keep we experience the life of the lead character Nicole, as she grapples with her day, six weeks after suffering a miscarriage. What lies beneath a thin veneer of normality is a rage and a sorrow that isolates and warps. She struggles to come to terms with the loss of something that was, but never was. Something that she alone felt as real. It is in the war between her internal and external life that we come to understand the conflicts that have plagued her recovery. What is remarkable about this day is that she stumbles upon a curious symbol of hope that will ultimately lead her back to peace.
"As the film evolved it easily transcended my experiences into a universal story of loss and redemption. The Leonard Cohen lyric in the side bar has informed each phase of production. There is a kind of madness that can infiltrate one's life with any significant loss. It can at times be a necessary comfort but if its logic is allowed to completely envelop the psyche, the road back to sanity is hard to find. Our lead, Nicole stands in the center of this dilemma. The film examines the day in which the 'cracks' become so extensive that living in two worlds is no longer an option. Nicole must chose. Does she follow her unborn child into the darkness or does she turn again to the light, the love, that awaits her." - Jhene Erwin