career, fiction, life, literature, personal, prose, short story, story, writer, writing
She wanted to eat the world for it was right in front of her eyes, on a platter, blue and ready to be consumed. But she had neither fork nor knife—not even a toothpick was in sight! She looked at her hands, at the other people sitting alone at their individual tables eating their share of the world with forks, knives, chopsticks and whatnot, realised there were no spare utensils lying around and certainly no servers from whom utensils could be acquired, and decided to eat it by hand. Hungry and eager to have what everyone else was having, she tried to lift the heavy watery globe with her hands. It would not budge. Nothing she did brought the globe closer to her mouth. So the only way to eat it was by using some sort of utensil, thought the girl. But how was she to obtain such a tool, when there was no self service station and no-one around to help? She looked at the wooden table and chair legs, as thick and sturdy as her arms. Surely, with enough effort, she could break off a piece and shape it into some sort of rod-like chopstick, she thought. But with what, her bare hands? And could she use her nails as a carver and eventually remove a piece of the wood and use that to eat? The options seemed endless, each as tiresome as the other. Giving up was the easiest option, but that meant starvation and she didn’t want to starve while the others ate. She had capable arms and hands, too. All she needed was an aid, but that required decision-making, effort, and perseverance. So, for a very long time—longer than necessary and certainly long enough for half a dozen self-hosted pity parties—she sat there pondering her choices. The challenges each might bring came to mind with ease. Appalled by every imagined catastrophe, the girl discarded all possibilities and simply sat there. She grew thinner and wearier as the time passed, and bitterness, as if sprouting from a poisoned seed planted at the pit of her empty stomach, blackened her once bright soul. The others kept eating, and she kept waiting for a miracle to happen, for the world to fall into her mouth the way a baby wails until it’s comforted. Of course, nothing happened. And so the girl died, an unfed could-have-been, while the others fed themselves and eventually rested, their lives’ work done. Had she tried to shape an eating utensil out of the table or chair leg, she would have succeeded like the others. Although some were born with silver spoons in their mouths, most made their own spoons and forks and chopsticks to feast on the world. Deep down, she knew this. If only she tried.