“Chapter 1 of ‘They Say I’m Crazy.'”
I’m sitting there, staring into nothing. I’m on a bench, a cold bench. A kid’s park slouches in front of me. One swing taunts me, swinging back and forth, back and forth. It can’t stop.
I’m numb inside. No, that’s not quite true. It’s more of a dull ache. The swing is still moving ever so slightly. Why was the world so…dumb? Idiotic? Dismal? I could come up with a billion adjectives. None would ever describe it perfectly. None could be the perfect word.
The swing. It was starting to creak.
But that was the thing. It isn’t enough for me to say it’s horrible. It’s just so…dull. So empty. It isn’t anything. I can handle horrible. I think. At least that would add some spice. Then I could cry. Should I try crying now?
It has a red seat. One of the plastic ones. The chain is covered in plastic too. It is still squeaking.
I tried. It didn’t work. I rub my hands together. They’re cold. They should be. It’s 40 degrees out here. I suppose I should have put a jacket on. Something to cover my arms. But I hadn’t felt like it. So, I sat. On the cold metal bench, watching the cold plastic swing, shivering absently in my thin tank top and shorts.
I look down at my feet, mostly to stop looking at the swing. I’d painted them. The toenails are black. I drew smiley faces on top of my skin. I thought it would make me happy. It hasn’t yet.
I glance back to the swing. Why won’t it stop?
The rest of the playground is brightly colored. I try to smile at it. I fail. I sigh. This is boring.
I stand. I look down at the sidewalk. I shrug and lay down. Is this better? It’s hard and cold. Annoying…but I don’t move. I stare up at the sky.
It’s blue and white. Just like it always is. Those same colors. Never changing. Boring. Except for sunset. I didn’t mind sunset. My body shivers.
That is what they call me. Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira…I don’t like that name. Why should I? I don’t have a say in my name. Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira, Kira.
My parents’ son’s face appears above mine. He isn’t happy. I stare. I’m not ever happy. Why isn’t he happy? They tell me he is older than me. But how do I know? They could be lying. I don’t know why they would but they could be. I think they hate me.
“Kira.” He says again. He sounds upset. I don’t understand why. What could I possibly be doing wrong now? “What are you doing?” He says it like he’s accusing me. Accusing me of what? I haven’t done anything wrong.
There it is again. That knot in my stomach. Right behind my belly button. Why’s it there? Why does it always come when someone’s upset? I don’t understand.
I stare up at him. His face is nice. Especially upside-down. It makes him look like he’s smiling. I know he’s not. He never smiles. Not at me anyway. He smiles at other girls. He smiles at them. Why doesn’t he smile at me? The dull ache isn’t so dull anymore.
“Kira. Let’s go. Come on.” He’s moving to my right side. He’s picking me up. I don’t want to be picked up, but I let him. I watch the world shift up and down around me. I watch the houses that all look sort of like mine. I watch them pass me by. Actually I’m passing them by.
Tears fall out of my eyes. They fall through my eyelashes. They fall onto my eyebrows. They roll down my forehead. They fall to the ground. I wonder what that would feel like, or if it would feel at all.