Saturday 7/08/2006 11:54:00 PM

She imagined the rivers under her skin. Without shores. The freedom they craved. The release she could give them. She'd always thought the world was alive only because she let it touch her. Perceived realities and all that.

The lion on the canvas roars because we are willing to hear it. We assign it that song. Anything or nothing could be coming out of its mouth.

It's what we want to hear.

Alone hadn't cost that much. $35 for a slice of solitude. $35 a night for the privacy one needs to kill themselves. A bargain by any standards.

She contemplated getting undressed. Filling the tub. She asked herself why she was there and wrote her answer on a crumpled piece of paper.

Not because I couldn't do it. I just don't see the point. Better to die alone than to live your life like that. I'm not frail enough to be a woman in this world.

The room didn't move as she skipped through it. Playing hopscotch with her suicide. Stone by stone. Counting the spaces.

When the rivers finally opened there was a smile on her face. She didn't know yet all the things she'd do. All the people she'd meet so many years later.

She sobbed quietly into the walls of porcelain wishing she could find more red, but not knowing how. Holding her wrist up to the flourescent and examining the depth of the wound. As that river she'd always imagined benignly trickled out.

If she had a time to die she wanted it to be then. But she couldn't have known how wrong she was. She'd never know until years later how much she still had to live.

How many people she'd yet to meet were waiting to know her.

It was a long walk to that empty room. Hacking at those wrists until nothing changed.

It was an even longer walk back to what I'd left.

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