We die, because we need to live.

Her body bounced on the floor, like it was some latex dummy, life size and realistic…

It was real though – so very real. The red paint flowed out of her neck, like a budding rose that could no longer maintain structural stability. I suppose the life had fled from her eyes; eyes which were mere seconds ago alive with fear. The fear came from the cold metal pressed against the left side of her neck…

 

Oh how she fell. How the blood poured and life just left her. How God showed me there was no justice in the world; all things were limited and precious. Such dark poetry bestowed upon a young child. It has fucked me up for the rest of my life. I saw no evidence of heaven or hell, just that which was here and that which was no longer here. I knew she was gone from this world; I felt it deep within.

 

The ringing in my ears from the sound of the three shots the asshole emptied in her neck sang loudly in my ear. I couldn’t process any of this. I was too young and I hadn’t a true concept of death, though I supposed this moment changed that; life is the thing we go through before it all means nothing.

 

The night before I had a dream relating to this moment; how fucked up is it that an 8 year old is having dreams of shit like this happening before the events unfold before his eyes? I’m like a cheap rip-off of The Shining. Imagine a sewer-like environment cleaned up as much as it could be for people to live in. People were depressed in this unseen, but clearly felt, miasma of depression and boredom. Through some less travelled passage ways dark men in hoods who looked like black Klu Klux Klan silhouettes with red eyes stood ominously in the background. One such man came up behind this beautiful blonde woman at the end of the dream. It was abrupt, the terror in her eyes and heart being what I remember most about the dream.

 

Back to the waking world, and rewinding a bit… I had gone to court with my mother. She was divorcing my father. I must’ve been around eight years old, and a week or so before, we had gone to court prior to this visit as well. Doing anything in court is a process that involves multiple trips, lot’s of wastes of your time, and money, if even only for transportation. In this previous visit, I saw a young lad drawing Venom from marvel comics, and I thought the drawing was awesome. The next time around, he wasn’t in his spot, or anywhere to be seen, but I liked his idea so much that I decided to take residence in his spot and draw.

 

This placed me in an ideal position, several feet from the front row of chairs in the waiting room, making me able to see the action first. Life can happen in slow motion, and it has done so for me several times.

 

He appeared from behind one of the pillars like a chocolate Slender-man; he was tall, black, thin, in a black suit. It hadn’t fully dawned on me that this was my dream becoming reality. My nightmare. My real life nightmare.

 

I struggle between being agnostic and believing that God is out to get us. He’s out for all of us, but especially me. This is a nagging feeling buried deep inside me from this moment, but he took this woman from the world to remind me that I was next. I see the flaw of this logic, but I am human, and this sort of thinking is how I was affected.

 

He draws the gun from a shoulder holster, slightly puffing out his left lapel. He is probably right-handed like most of us. The silver cowboy gun is in his dark hand. It moves in a perfect sweep from his chest to his target spot. The cold metal — it must be so cold — kisses her neck. The cold metal wakes her up from this dreary miasma holding us all. Her eyes widen. She knows what is happening within an instant of this instant. Her head turns and she looks at him. Those beautiful eyes stare like a deer looking in headlights. His eyes are cold and barely noticeable, blended into the rest of his dark form. The end is here. Oh God the end is here. The baby she is holding in her arms… her baby echoing her beauty into the future; a physical memory of a woman who is no more.

 

BANG.

 

BANG.

 

BANG.

 

My angle of view changed. Somehow, I knew what was happening. I gathered my things and ran, taking a step for each release of hot lead. When I had made my way some small steps to the side of the room, she fell in front of me. I already told you what that was like. I have to relive that moment in my mind often.  I’ll spare you from the repetition. The moment is gone now and I am here writing about it to you. The tenses change in this writing which is a no-no, but I feel that it is appropriate in this piece. The transitions may be weird, as I dance between multiple thoughts and feelings while writing this. I won’t change them so much. I want you to feel like I did; like I still do sometimes. When I relive this memory, I am in the past and the present at the same time (time isn’t as linear as we often perceive anyway). My heart beats faster and breath quickens as I dig deeper for a way to best describe to you the experience. I regurgitate it on this screen for you to read.

 

What if God is the bad guy? What if this is his venom?

 

I’ve tried to make peace with this moment. A few years ago I was able to recall that in her final split-second, the blonde woman passed her child onto someone else next to her. The other woman accepted. There is something beautiful there; the human instinct perhaps. It is a mother caring for her child as best she could. I am so sad now. I feel like crying but the upper part of my cheeks punches my tear ducts shut. Don’t you see people? It’s not up to God. It’s up to us. The only thing we know that exists in some mystical sense beyond our full understanding is death. If there is a God then that is what he is. Death. Make no mistake, our time can be anytime. Everything we do can come to a sudden halt at any time. I read a book written by a warrior once, as a way to come to peace with this tragedy. I’ll paraphrase his words: “Death is a big brother standing over our shoulder, reminding us to live.”

 

I understand now.

 

We die, because we need to live.

20 thoughts on “We die, because we need to live.

  1. Orhan Gokkaya

    I like the idea that all of this was happening around the age of 8. I felt like the writer’s main age to experience the cruel world was at that age. When you stated, “Life can happen in slow motion, and it has done so for me several times” I wanted to get some examples of a slow motion life. Is life slowing down because you were in a life threatening situation? As I read the piece I saw a lot of pronouns utilized to reference the characters, however, I wanted to know more about them, give details of the characters, make them come out in this piece. This piece sounds like a conspiracy theory especially when the writer states, “What if God is the bad guy? What if this is his venom?” I felt like the ending wasn’t strong enough you state, “I understand now.” You pull back your ideas only to yourself and disconnect with the reader. Also you become uncertain when you state, “what if.” It just makes the reader question it and lets the reader know not even the author knows about such situation.

    Reply
  2. Gabriela

    The style of writing in this piece is very different then what we are used to reading from you. I like that you are versatile in your writing because it shows that you are a talented writer and you are able to master different writing styles. I love that you started the piece in a very poetic way which described an unfortunate scene that through your writing was almost beautiful. I appreciated the realness of the piece; it seemed very genuine because you make note to inform the reader that although you didn’t exactly remember the event, you were describing it as best you can. This shows your credibility because considering you were only eight years old, you most likely wouldn’t remember every single detail. The description you used to describe the shooter was so vivid and I was able to close my eyes and visualize everything that happened as if I have witnessed it myself. The one thing I would suggest is to flesh out more of your feelings on the event you saw. I want to know how this impacted you through life, besides it changing your outlook on God. Get even more personal about the impact it had on you. Give us examples of how this changed your life. Thanks for sharing, it was a beautiful piece.

    Reply
  3. Li Huang

    Speaking of life and death, how about deadlines? You witnessed something very wicked at a tender age and I can understand if you view people with cynicism to the very least from that point on. But again, how about deadlines? We spoke in class about it. Is living reflective of procrastination and visa versa? Are the deadlines for submitting work our “deaths?” If so, if the task was completed at or before the deadline, does that mean we get to start a new cycle of life? And if the task was not completed by the deadline, does that mean that you are dead? I don’t know. Life and death. Procrastination and the deadline–they seem awfully reminiscent of each other after reading your story.

    Reply
  4. Krystal Temple

    The fragmented style of writing both added to the characterization of the main character. The main character seems to be a confused child, who is dealing with death. The beginning of the piece seems almost like a nursery rhyme, and the imagery is so strong that I can almost visualize a life-sized doll bouncing back and forth. However, you do state that this was an actual event, and you solidify this concept at the conclusion of your piece. I believe that the voice of this piece shifts from a very poetic and yet childish one to a more vulgar one. I feel as if this piece would be stronger if you kept the same voice throughout. I appreciated the poetic voice, and it’s parallel to a nursery rhyme. Some of the additions to the piece seem random – although the random style does add to the theme of confusion that flows throughout the entire piece, I believe these ideas can be better tied in. You mention that you struggle between being agnostic and believing in God. I wanted to see it. I wanted you to add a scene or details of how you struggled with this as a child, meanwhile tying it into the death you witnessed. I love the ending line, and it allows your piece to end on a strong note: We die because we need to live. I would love for you to elaborate on this idea as well. Also, during the piece you seem to explain your style of writing within the body. I don’t believe that this is necessary. it is up to the reader to decipher your style of writing. Overall, great imagery! Great piece. I love pieces that don’t follow a traditional structure.

    Reply
  5. Nadya Antoine

    I really admire the writing style of the piece. It’s written almost like a poem. When it comes to the subject matter you discussed, it’s interesting that you chose this style. Nevertheless, it flows quite nicely.

    A lot of the pieces we’ve read have been reminiscent and the writer has almost unattached him-self from the story he has written. Your small diversion with thoughts like “The tenses change in this writing which is a no-no, but I feel that it is appropriate in this piece. The transitions may be weird, as I dance between multiple thoughts and feelings while writing this”, strengthens your piece in that you explicitly tell us how you would like us to feel. That to me is great.

    The only elaboration I would like to see is more of the religious tone towards the end. Other than that, great piece.

    Reply
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  7. Teodoromag

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    Reply
  8. Teodoromag

    Untuk kucing pejantan Anda, Geon cukup untuk dipertimbangkan. Berdasarkan Guinness Book of World Record 2010, Creme Puff tersimpan sebagai kucing tertua. Tabby dan Dixie merupakan kucing kesohor pertama yang mengandam Gedung Putih. Kucing-kucing tersebut merupakan milik mantan presiden Amerika, Abraham Lincoln. Tabby pernah diberi makan oleh Lincoln secara garpu emas tatkala malan malam.

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    Namun dua bulan kemudian, Lisa sepertinya tidak bisa menolak keinginannya. Nama Sultan identik dengan laki-laki maka itu Sultan pas buat diberikan ke meong jantan yang kamu miliki. Apalagi kalau kucing kamu punya perawakan yang longgar atau tenaganya memuaskan dan berkuasa. Stanley merupakan salah homo nama yang pas diberikan untuk laki-laki. Menurut Inggris Kuno, nama Stanley digunakan untuk nama besok yang berarti sabun batu. Sedangkan menurut bahasa Inggris-Amerika, Stanley berarti padang rumput yang berbatu.

    Penasaran apa identitas hewan peliharaan nun paling sering diberikan pemilik kucing untuk hewan berbulu kesayangannya? Melansir dari variasi sumber, berikut itu 15 inspirasi identitas kucing yang paling unik dan populer. Berikut daftar nama kucing korea yang bisa jadi pilihan untuk hewan peliharaan kesayangan Anda.

    Tabiat semar yang super membuat nama berikut menjadi pilihan lain untuk peliharaan Engkau. Nama Eye in the Dark dikenakan oleh Noorman Reedus sebagai nama kucingnya. Sesuai dengan namanya, kucing tersebut benar2 berwarna hitam pekat.

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    Jenis kucing ini juga memiliki kelaziman yang lemah pelan, ramah, santai periang, dan cerdas. Parasnya yang menggemaskan satwa unik membuat Kucing Persia jadi primadona para pecinta kucing. Suara meaw mereka rupanya memberikan patois bahwa si meong ingin mengajak sang pemilik bermain simpatik atau meminta minat sesuatu. Nah maka kucing ini luar biasa cocok kamu jadikan hewan peliharaan untuk oleh karena itu teman bermain.

    Dibanding karakter di film The Lion King tersebut, Simba identik dengan sosok secara kuat, penguasa, pemberani. Karena itu, bahwa kamu punya meong orange dengan jambul lebat dan badan kokoh, kamu bisa lho menamainya Simba. Nama ini sesuai untuk kucing perempuan yang memiliki karakter lembut, manis, & mudah dipercaya. Mumu akan cocok guna nama kucing betina yang terlihat kecil.

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