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Little Bird

My hands shook and trembled. I had never done anything like this before. But the
circumstances were all too familiar: I was alone. The house silent aside from the bulldog,
who I got to name Charlie, snoozing loudly away on the couch, the cat curled up next to
her. The sun filtering in from the dirty, kitchen window hit my back, but I felt no warmth
despite the heat of the early summer day. There was nothing to do besides be left to my
own thoughts.
I held one of my fathers beautiful chefs knives in my nervous hands. The naked,
gleaming blade was sharp and ready to cut. I knew how to use the knife. I had been
cooking with my father for years, learning all I knew about cooking from him. I knew
that with how sharp the edge was, I would not have to apply much pressure to cut through
almost anything, especially the living, tender flesh of my own wrist.
These thoughts had been lingering in my mind for a while now, like a predatory
feline waiting for the perfect time to strike and that time had come. I had been struggling
for two years with that fact that I had to leave my mothers house in Willard for my
fathers in Springfield. I left behind friends, a good school, and everything I knew since I
was a child. However, it seemed that no matter how many times that I told myself it was
my mothers fault that I left her toxic presence and un-homelike house, I could never
fully bring myself to believe. How could I? I had been cornered by many adults
demanding to know why I had left and that I should be there for my mom, supporting her
and helping her. Others had cornered me telling me I was a shitty kid because that is what
my mother told them.

I felt like my own mother didnt like or want me. She not only told people of my
many faults, and pointed them out to me regularly. I was well aware that I was a fat and
ugly girl with little use. But she had decided to give her time to a boyfriend and spend her
time as a mother. Clearly I was holding her back, burdening her with motherhood. I knew
that was my fault because my older brother Zach had decided to just not speak to her at
all. Mom didnt have to worry about him or mother him. But I stuck with her. I was the
guilty one and so I had to fix it. However, I didnt know how and I was sure I couldnt fix
it. How could a girl who always made mistakes and couldnt do things right fix anything?
I was convinced that kind of girl, the kind of girl that I was, could fix anything but only
make things worse.
I gripped the smooth handle tighter. All I could think about was how easy it would
be. Just a few nicks up the forearm and I could bleed out. No one would be home for
hours. My step-mom and dad were at work and werent due to return till nearly six. My
brother, Zach, was at play rehearsal and wouldnt venture back to the house till nearly
midnight. So, I could just simply slip away. It would be my final punishment: grow cold
and fade into nothing. It was more than I deserved. It would be too painless and I
wondered how I could make it hurt more.
I felt like I deserved that pain. I had caused so much, it was only right. Only fair. I
caused so much grief for my dad and step-mom, that it seemed my painful ending would
give them justice. I brought contention into the home by always fighting with Zach. I
hated him. He didnt have to deal with Mom and no one yelled at him for it. Not to
mention he thought he was the boss and I just wanted to be left alone. Then there was the
contention I had with my parents. I was hurt and they didnt understand. How could they?

They had perfect families growing up! Their families werent divided. They also seemed
to side with Zach. But what else was new? They were also the oldest children. They
couldnt understand my position as the youngest child.
As these thoughts swirled through my mind in a deadly dance, I pressed the very
tip of the blade against my index finger. The pressure was not great enough to draw
blood, but enough for the nerves to send warning to my brain about the impending
danger. The pain was dull and I realized I wanted more. The need was an unquenchable
fire raging across the landscape of my inner being. I pressed harder until blood
blossomed around the tip like a brilliant red flower bursting into life.
My eyes were transfixed on the scarlet liquid as it slunk down my finger. It left
behind a smooth, wet track as if it were some disgusting creeping thing. Finally, the bulb
leading the decent pooled in the crook of the junction of my thumb before sliding down
to my wrist, disappearing into the black fabric of my hair ties. It had a kind of ethereal
beauty. The scarlet was in stark contrast to the snow white backdrop that was my skin. I
was enthralled as other droplets followed like mindless sheep. However, the initial pain
was gone and the dullness settled back in. This was not good enough.
I pressed the blade further into my finger. I wondered what it would be like to
have metal meet bone. Would it hurt to scratch the framework of my body? I wasnt sure,
but I hoped it would. It was agreed upon. I would make sure I hurt before I allowed my
contemptible spirit left its disgusting physical form.
Suddenly, the once slumbering cat jumped up beside me on the countertop.
Startled, I dropped the knife. I jumped back, not wanting the knife to hit my socked feet.
Its clatter on the hardwood floor sounded too loud and it hurt my ears. I stared at the

bloodied knife, just lying on the floor, for long moments. The splattered liquid looked
like melted rubies staining the floor.
Slowly, my eyes traveled upward until they met the golden green eyes of my
bronze tabby, Liz. Her sharp gaze held mine with a strange curiosity that was too
sophisticated for any animal. But with her head cocked off to the side, I almost felt her
ask, What are you doing?
You know it would be better this way, I replied sharply.
I knew it would be better. Not only did I cause trouble for my family and they
didnt want me around, but my friends felt the same. Not one of them was missing me.
They never called or wanted to see me. Ever since I left they had forgotten me. It was as
if I had died and there were merely moving on, gaining new best friends. It seemed a
thirty minute distance was all they needed to toss me aside like the trash I was.
Liz just looked at me with her golden green eyes, pulling me from my thoughts. I
almost felt an envy for her. Her life was so easy and she was beautiful. What would I do
to have eyes the color of emeralds mixed with glittering gold instead of dull, dirt brown
eyes that neither sparkled nor shined. As we stared at each other, I almost expected an
answer, but none came.
I shook my head and let out a deep breath. Now I was talking to a stupid animal. I
glanced back at her to see that she was still staring at me. It was like she was waiting for
a better answer. I just glared and picked her up, ignoring the fact that her fur would
smudge the fine lines of blood and stick to the fresh wound. Barely holding her for a
second, I dumped her on the floor. She knew she wasnt allowed on the counters anyway.

The cat stayed and looked at me with sad eyes. Why did you drop me? she
seemed to ask. I just grimaced and snatched up the knife once more. I turned away from
my cats pleading eyes and stared out the kitchen window, which overlooked the
I could not look for long, as the sunlight was being reflected off of the pools
clear, clean water and caused for pain to blossom in black, almost hot, pain in my dark
eyes. I turned my back on the light and back to the cooler darkness of my home. My
hands mindlessly fiddled with the knife, as my mind wandered back to its shadowy
My body seemed to start to move on its own. It was like I was no longer in
control. I pushed back my long gray sleeve back to my elbow and tore off the unused hair
ties, revealing the red welts that were created by me snapping the metal against my soft
wrists. Then, suddenly like a flash of lightning, the red tip of the knife was delicately
poised at the base of my hand like a ballerina prepared for the ballet to start. I applied a
gentle pressure, as if I was going to ease into a steaming bath that colder flesh was not
prepared to sink into quite yet.
A loud, disgruntled snort from the sleeping Charlie echoed from the living room
and snapped me out of my trance. I pulled the knife away and threw it harshly into the
sink. The noise woke the sleeping dog, who jolted up and gave a halfhearted bark, which
sounded more like a cross between a toddlers yell and an oink of a fat pig.
I leaned forward and gripped the edge of the counter. I glared at my whitened
knuckles as anger and fury filled me. How could I be so weak? How could I be such a
coward? If I was so hell bent on making everyone happy, why couldnt I do the one thing

that was solve everyones problems? I squeezed my eyes shut and felt hot tears rush
down my face.
Clearly, I was unwanted and unneeded. This was why I was weak. I couldnt give
what everyone wanted; what I was sure everyone dreamed about: a life without me.
Everything would be fixed. No more fighting. No more pain. No more darkness. I was
the devil that needed to be cast out, yet would not let go. Was I that sadistic that I wanted
to watch other people suffer? I guessed misery liked company, and there was hardly a
creature more miserable than I. However, even these thoughts could not spur me on to
finish what I had started.
I just washed the knife and my hands free of blood. The kitchen floor was next.
No one would know of my attempt. It would be too shameful to admit and to see the
disappointment on my parents faces. Their desperate wish that I had killed myself would
remain unfulfilled.
I put the knife away, more in pain than ever and wishing it would just go away. I
closed my eyes wondering what it would be like to die. Fantasizing about it. My ideas
were broken by the sound of the cat door swinging open. I turned around to see my cat
prance in like a proud pony. Dangling from her mouth was a young bird, blood staining
the fur around her smirking mouth.
Liz! I shouted as she dropped it and began to paw at it.
I shooed the cat away and gazed sadly at the little bird. I couldnt help the rush of
thoughts that flooded my mind. How did Liz get the bird? Did it fall from its safe haven
of a nest? I couldnt help but feel that the world had lost some ounce of beauty at the
death of this little song maker.

However, pushing such thoughts aside, I picked the bird up with a plastic bag and
wrapped it up. Liz was just looking at me with yearning. I just shook my head and went
outside. I tossed the tiny, limp body into the outside trash can. There it would remain to
rot and be forgotten. Something that I longed for.
I returned to the house. I still needed my escape. My eyes wandered back to the
kitchen but I resisted the urge to retrieve the knife again. I forced myself over to the
bookshelves and pulled out my favorite Harry Potter book. I always felt Harry Potter,
with his own horrible family situation understood me. I shut myself in my room only to
board the train and head off to Hogwarts, mine and Harrys escape.
Much had changed in the past eight years since I threw away that little bird. I was
able to make new friends and came to realize that it was mother, not me, that was the
demon. There was and is love in my life. Though, sometimes the pain still lingers. I had
been abused and abandoned, but never again since that day did I pick up a knife and try
to end my life in that way.