The Shell Trumpet

The Shell Trumpet

The waters swept in and out, caressing the sand. I thought I might be happy. It was beautiful here, underneath the weight of the sky. Heavy clouds swam back and forth through the murky, over-cast water above me. I was sat on a shell, broken; yet smooth and solid, and I hoped it would stay that way. If it crumbled beneath me, I would have nothing left and I might fall forever into the sky. The sea crept towards me, closer and closer then quickly swept itself away, teasing like a child might tease a dog with a bone or a baby with its rattle. I tried listening to the distant call of invisible gulls, and the laughter of the surrounding ghosts. They played and chased and ran and laughed, but they were translucent; the women in long heavy dresses, the men in overcoats. I hoped that they could not see me either. I hoped that my shell would not be taken from me. I hoped to be buried alive, here with my shell. I hoped I would not be found. Not ever. Not by people at least. The waters continued to creep towards me, and I thought that they might be calling my name. The people here were oblivious to the tide and to its cruelty. I thought that there was nothing unusual about people being unaware. They never did seem to notice eachother. I decided to bleed. So I took a shattered piece of glass from the ground and dug in to my wrist. Luckily, it hadn’t been blunted by the damn water yet. I felt like a child again, digging a hole to bury treasure. It hurt, actually. I watched the blood spill crimson from the gash, flooding down my fingers, and onto the sand. Weird, but I liked the effect. Like tie-dye. Marble. I had drawn on the earth, and left a part of myself here forever now. I would never be forgotten. Never. Never found but never forgotten. A gradual emptiness filled my stomach, so I scooped up some blood-stained sand and ate it; it tasted vile and left grit in my mouth. Eventually, I grew tired and lonely, and bored of my own thoughts, so I gathered what I could of myself and curled up in the shell. It was shaped almost like a trumpet, and filled with golden sand. I slept there for days, I think, but maybe I didn’t sleep at all; then I sat and thought, and thought and sat, and wondered why I wasn’t born a crab. Life would have been very different if I was a crab. I wondered why I was so heavy. Might have been all these thoughts weighing on my mind, or even the tears in my stomach, dragging me back towads the ocean, towards their home. I wondered why I was so ugly. Some days I was so hideous that I wanted to die. Still the sea moved closer towards me, it’s waves curling forefingers, and I didn’t trust it one bit. I tasted the salt in my mouth as I watched it. I wondered about the boy tapping on my shell, a clockwork train in one hand and an ice-cream cone in the other. The knocking echoed inside, bouncing from wall to wall, yet the noise was a strangely distant one. Like a thoght far off, or a dream you can’t quite catch the next morning. I thought I might cry, because I couldn’t reach the boy through the walls of my shell. I wanted desperately to reach him, but without even trying I knew I couldn’t leave my shell; I knew I was trapped despite the breeze that hit me and the voices that reached my ears. A thousand salty tears left me I think and suddenly I had never felt more alive or any closer to death. I cried until my nose was sore and red and my throat hurt. I cried until I couldn’t remember why. I liked to cry. While I sat and cried and let my wrists drip drip drip it had crept upon me, like a jack in the box creeps up on a child during the dead of night. The ocean. I hated it. It was ugly and gray and beautiful all at once. I hated myself. But I loved to cry. I wanted the waves to hit me, cold and wet as a dead heart, chilling me to the bone; I wanted to be s                                                                                                                                                                             we                                                                                                                                                              p                                                                                                                                                                t   a                                                                                                                                                                         w                                                                                                                                                                       ay

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