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Tired (A Fine Example Of Teenage Sleep Depravation) This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   The school bus stops with a jolt that twists my leg. I stare down and see that it's still connected. Outside the dirt-encrusted bus window is my bus stop, the corner of my street - the glorious street I've lived on for my entire sixteen years.

I limp out of the bus and its metallic, yellow cage of a body. Descending its stairs, I trip and fall to the pavement below. As I rise, the only thing that gives me hope is that it is Friday, and school is over. My grim attitude is strengthened by the scenery. The tall trees have shed their leaves. The grass is some sort of shade of gray. It seems as though nature shares my feeling of exhaustion.

I shamble home, with vague pain in subtle places I didn't know I had. I open the garage and enter my house with a moan. I'm the first one home, as usual. I walk into the kitchen and peer into the cabinet. No, I'm not hungry - I'm too tired to be hungry - so I throw my school bag down and remove my big, puffy winter coat. I drop both.

My legs give up and I let myself collapse to the cold kitchen floor. A feeling of calm rushes through my battered body. Even though I'm not hot, the chilled, dirty white tiles send a pleasant cool feeling through me. The flat hardness of the floor is somehow a comfort. I begin to drift into the peaceful blackness that is sleep.

All is silent except for the gentle hum of the refrigerator. My eyelids are heavy and I sleep, still on the kitchen floor. All of a sudden, the phone rings. I scream! The artificial bell is like an explosion breaking all the silent peace that ever existed. I reluctantly pick it up, eyes still closed, hands shaking, and grumble - "Yeah?" The perky voice answers - "Ron, it's Joe!"

I hang up so suddenly, even I can't believe I do it. Usually I don't just hang up on people. I groan a word that probably hasn't been invented yet (it was that strange), and slowly fall back down. My tired face presses once more against the cold-tiled floor. The bags under my eyes rub against the tiles. I know he'll call again. Poor Joe. He doesn't know that I'm busy trying to lose consciousness. The phone rings again, as expected, but I don't hear it. I'm too busy celebrating Friday on my kitchen floor. c


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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