A mouse told me this story:
Once I got stuck in a trap. It closed on my left-rear paw. I’d seen the damage a trap could do — spines broken, skulls crushed. I was familiar with the SNAP it made. I was also familiar with the treats used to bait it — cheese, bread crumbs, dabs of peanut butter. But, fool that I am, I stepped on this trap by accident, in the dark, in transit from one place to another. It nearly scared me to death, the sudden lurch! I squeaked. I jumped. I dragged that trap halfway across the room before the shock wore off and I was overwhelmed with pain. And then I died.
Another time, I fell into a pot of bone broth. The pot had been put outside to cool. This time it wasn’t an accident — I was drawn by the tantalizing smell and made sure to confirm the absence of humans. I didn’t mean to fall in. Or maybe I did. I was pleased to be submerged in this basin of warm, delicious liquid. I drank my fill. I floated on my back. But I soon discovered the walls were too steep to climb. As the night wore on and the bone broth rapidly cooled, it began to freeze all around me. I cannot say whether I drowned first and then froze or froze before I drowned, but it makes little difference in the end. I died.
Yet another time, I was cornered by a cat — it had me trapped in a hollow log. When I ran one way, it blocked the exit. When I ran the other way, it easily outpaced me, appearing there, too. When I held still, considering my options, the cat banged a paw against the log and gave me a fright, thus starting the process all over again. Lucky for me, it began to rain. The cat also sought shelter in the log and I used that opportunity to escape, dashing into the night. Unfortunately, an owl had been watching the whole time. He swooped down and ate me. Dead again.
Every time I died, I felt sorry for myself. I also felt relieved. I thought, Stupid me! But I also thought, This day has been coming. I wished for more time — every time I died, I wished for another hour, another day. I was greedy for more life. I suppose I always will be.
This is a repository for JY's original content that's yet to be bound in a book -- essays, short fiction, etc. There's little rhyme or reason, so jump in!