The Case of the Boy and the Fish

August 10, 2009
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The iridescent image of the annual county carnival vanished from the rear-view mirror as the gray subcompact careened down the highway. In the back seat was a boy; four days past his sixth birthday, a grin smothered across his face, a clenched grip on an inflated plastic bag. Triumph at the beanbag toss had bestowed upon him a goldfish, a creature he had so emphatically desired.

The boy’s blatant delight at his prize did not subside during the journey home. On the arrival of the fish at its new residence, the boy poured the creature into a glass bowl and positioned it adjacent to a formidable blockade of toy racecars and emerald army men. Propping himself onto a creaky chair and pressing his nose against the crystal, his chestnut eyes gazed at the tiny life; its scales were the hue of burnt orange. Each flick of the tail was noted with adoration, for the boy had been blessed with this marvelous companion!

Supper was served to the boy; he would not stray from the bowl. "Drink all your orange juice," said the mother, "There are healthy vitamins inside." He gulped down the juice yet paused to peer at the fish’s beady eyes. "You need some vitamins too," the boy declared to the fish. So down went the remaining citrus liquid to the depths of the dish. A rusty orange tint permeated the bowl at a remarkable speed as the boy, in satisfaction, observed his generous deed.

And at the fluorescent dawn of the day, the fish (poor soul!) passed away.

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This article has 7 comments. Post your own now!

Yoodle15 said...
Nov. 11, 2009 at 12:05 pm
Your short story is lovely! <3 Love the colourful language to describe the spark of childhood naiveness! =) Oooh, the ending was the best part of it all, so ironically funny!! Poor fishy!! =P
TheUnknownGuest said...
Aug. 24, 2009 at 9:09 pm
I loved it! It wasn't expected. (at least not to me) Awesome job and keep up the great work!!
Inkspired said...
Aug. 21, 2009 at 7:10 pm
This is sweet, cheerful, and sad. Really well written. To me, the last line is the most poetry-like. Great job!
Jennax3 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 19, 2009 at 3:14 pm
Thank you... this is actually a prose poem, but there isn't a section for that on here.
Meredith M. said...
Aug. 19, 2009 at 2:22 pm
Great imagery. This story is so sweet and truly captures the image of childhood innocence and naivety. Awesome!
Like*Whoa!!! This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 18, 2009 at 7:23 pm
heyy, thanks for commenting on my stuff:)

i love this poem, its really sweet and kindof sad at the end...but its really good

carolines This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 18, 2009 at 7:20 pm
first of all, i would like to say thank you for commenting on my work!!! :)
second, i love this!!! it's like a really short story. you're so good at creating an image-a scene that the reader can truly understand.
you've done a great job!!! :)
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