Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

A Saving Truth

On my first encounter with The Ache, I was six years old, sitting in the back of my mother’s minivan, a high-pitched voice asking for a new Raggedy-Ann doll, and being rejected with a stark,

“No.”

My heart dropped down to a hole in my stomach as if it was tied to a pulley, a weight dragging it down, down, down; I could feel it beat-beating as it fell.

I couldn’t see the burst of redness but I could feel as my cheeks started to burn with what later would be labeled as “Shame,” “Disappointment,” maybe even “Grief,” because I had asked and because I had been rejected.

The second time I made The Ache’s acquaintance, I was a quivering freshman crunched into the creaking black seats of my school’s auditorium, as a voice wavered
tearfully over a microphone held in shaking fingers, that a classmate had tried to steal his one, and possibly his only, life.

This time “It” came as a sort of paralyzation, a methodic freezing of each joint and limb until I was no longer sure that my heart was even beating, because the deafening silence of the ice masked the familiar sound.

The Ache continued to reappear over a number of years, always in a different form, constantly displaying an alternate facet, so that eventually I came to know it as intimately as I knew the lines on the back of my hand or the freckles on my arm.

Sometimes I watch the explosions on the news and I hear the children laughing wickedly in the school hallway, and I turn inside because the outside is senseless, and in a pleading voice, with a be-beat-beating heart, I ask myself,

“What is this world?”

And though the waves are crashing outside, and the fire is burning in Evil’s eyes, a tiny voice knocks calmly on the door in my brain, where all is quiet, and whispers,

“This world is beautiful.”

And that’s why, when I tilt my head up to soak in the night sky, and I see the stars sparkling light-years away, their distance unimaginable to me, origin shrouded in mystery, I do not feel insignificant, I only feel small, because as the voice persistently pleads,

“This world is beautiful.”

Maybe The Ache will decide to mark its residence with me for eternity, and maybe one day it will overtake me, wrap around my ankles and drag me down into the breadth of its sand, where I will sink without end, and under the heave of a thousand grains sigh,

“How did I get so low?”

But as I look out the window at the leaves rustling, a dog’s barks echoing in the hollows of the trees in the distance, the sun sparkling through the empty spaces, shadows stretching in the burn of the light, the voice states confidently with the beats of my heart,

“This world is beautiful.”




Post a Comment

Be the first to comment on this article!




Site Feedback