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To Give Up

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Foolish men live foolishly, supposedly, the storytellers always told me. Those old men, would spill wicked tales with of forgetfulness and willingness. To follow one’s dreams, why that young lady is the greatest sin, I was told over and over again. My dreams slowly shrunk like a wounded puppy, sulking in the deepest corner of my soul, with each whipping of the words. I bowed to the scoldings of the old men and the prim mothers, my back seeming to be forever bent, dragging my face through the mud and dirt. I felt as if the chains which pulled me further and further down, stemming from my abusers hands, would never let up. The handcuffs chaffed my wrists, drawing blood with every improper movement. Eventually their words hardened into tongue like whips of leather, stinging me with bloodthirsty lashings of words and sentences. I fell to my knees over and over again, finding it harder and harder to get back up. Rocks and pebbles dug themselves in, a constant reminder as my skin slowly grew over them, absorbing and assimilating them. Each time my face splashed into the self created mud, it stuck to my eyelashes and cheeks, begging me like a needy lover to forever stay with it. It grew harder and harder to resist its clingy, deathly embrace, its slimy hands covering my body like only a trusted loved one should.

The sun seemed to fade into oblivion though light shone on, without any luster of life, a blinding whiteness above me. It was always willing to pull me up into its angel like wings and comfort me like a mother should, yet some part of me remained grounded to the earth which was my hell. Years and moments passed without a single change minus the tightening of my handcuffs and a few failed escape attempts. Again and again I reached for the light above, the soulless blankness which I craved so desperately.

The prison guards were careful to bring me close, letting me float just barely off the ground, before pulling on my chains with a practiced cruelness, slamming me back into the mud’s cold embrace. Feelings of desperation grew, as my inner clock began hinting that time for me might just be running out. The bells each morning clang at the sound of the morning sacrifice, waking me from the little sleep I received. I would stand at attention, my back slumped over in defeat at the slaughtering of my dreams and siblings, day dreams of escaping into the light filling my eyes and mind.

Slowly, quickly, it overtook everything, this desire to be free of my chains in the wings above. They slammed me down into the mud once more, the blood leaking out of my body from self inflicted wounds, I lay there, staring into the white light which had become my sky, feeling the last will to live leave my body. It leached slowly into the soil beneath me as they stood above, yelling and screaming, telling me to get up once again. As if my knees were broken, my body lay, unable to move, my eyes closing without the will to stay open and forever stare at the horror of a world I’d built around me. My head fell to the side, my neck losing the power to keep me staring into the sky, the mud began dragging my body down me, while my hands twitched beside me, wanting me to reach for that sky. Yet as I tried to lift my hands, to move my mouth to tell them to take me to that place above, I found it impossible, only the mud closed over without even an answer to spare. It filled my nose and mouth, suffocating me under all the human emotions of negativity, for I’d never known any other. The foolishness of the situation made me want to laugh as I lay there dieing as I had been all the past years. I laughed and laughed, mud filling my mouth and throat, trying to drown out the laughter. They stopped and stared, a lone body among all the dead, filling the harsh silence with laughter so new, so sweet, a melody of unheard sound. The giggles and chuckles pushed the mud around, a playground bully doing good, pushing it back like vomit, up through my throat, spilling like milk through my nose. Sputtering, I stared at the sky, darkening with an unusual blue, watching the clouds of white and grey fill with rain. The laughter racked my body, pulling and arcing even my back off the ground. The minions of anger and pain which had tortured me so long stared in a strange sense of amused amazement waiting for me to die as they believed I should. Moments and minutes passed, as I waited for their supposed death to take me.

Why continue torturing me, I screamed at them, why, why, why. The laughter mixed into my
hiccupping words as the rain began to fall for the first time in years. My tears danced with the rain drops, watering the muddy ground. I found my voice deep inside and it rose in a guttural yell. The pain filled the air, blanketing the dead bodies of the past around me in a peaceful moment of silence for their dead ears, while pulling tears from my abusers, showing them everything they had done. It grew fangs and claws, ripping themselves into the chests of those others who had held chains to my wrists and whips to my back. It took on a form of words and sentences, mimicking their earlier attacks in some strange irony. This beast, a shadow of the life once inside me, picked me up in its bloodstained claws, my body limp, almost falling out.

I had given up.



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