10.9.2013 Journal Prompt

Image from The Andy Griffith Show
Image from The Andy Griffith Show

October 9, 2013: Before we knew better…


One thought on “10.9.2013 Journal Prompt

  1. Lindsay

    Was there really a more innocent time? A time before this time? A time before we knew better and we were good then and the whole world good around us? Was there really a time like that? If there was, I don’t remember it. I don’t.

    We fought as kids, me and Gracie. That much I recall. All tooth and claw and kicking, and kisses that were sharp and biting, and maybe there was innocence in what we did then. And afterwards, she licked my wounds, the taste of blood on her tongue and on my tongue, too. And we curled into sleep then, curled into each other, and dry forest fallen leaves pulled over us like a blanket.

    They said we were feral. Like cats that have run back to the wild they once were. And they shook their heads and blamed our mothers and our fathers. They took us to school some days, men in stiff uniforms and silver buttons on their jackets and their hands holding hard to our wrists, and they talked to us stern or they talked to us soft and pleading. It made no nevermind. We lit out of there first chance we got, first chance they gave us, two girls running into sunlight and into air.

    And I think now, maybe that was our innocent time, for cats when they are kittens still, they fight with needle claws and teeth sharp as pins or broken glass, and stitches of blood one left on the back of my hand, and we thought that was cute, me and Gracie, and we laughed and we called those kittens sweet and not bad. Then when they were grown and the cat-slash and sear of their attacks left wounds dripping blood deep and dark as molasses, well we cussed against the evil they had become and one I shot with a rifle and its name was Eve and I shot it in the head. And now we are all grown, too, Gracie and me.

    Gracie knows stuff. She has a keen eye and she sees which shops can be broken into and the greater good, our good, served by what we can steal from those shops. And sometimes there’s money tucked into the till and we take that too, bills and loose change. And we live well then, drinking cheap liquor that burns our insides and drinking enough we don’t feel our toes. And we eat bagged roast chicken from the bone and cheesecake in doorstep slices. And after, we sleep in a motel bed, all warm and holding onto the smell of our unwashed bodies, my hands in Gracie’s pants and her hands in mine, and that’s the closest thing to heaven that we ever get and the closest thing to innocent, which isn’t close at all.

    And way back, two days back and about two hundred miles as the crow flies, there’s a man sits out front of his house. He sits in a rocking chair, but the chair don’t rock, and his hair is wet from the dew and flies lay eggs in the corners of his eyes and in his open mouth and in the black hole I put in his head with his own rifle. I don’t know his name, or if he was church-good or bad. And me and Gracie don’t ever talk about the things he said he’d like to do to us, things men with sin in their hearts always want to do, and all their words spat and black as chewed tobacco spit. And if we do think on that man, on any man, then we hold a little closer to each other and Gracie bites my lip till I taste blood and I pinch her skin till she cries.

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