Today should have just been another Wednesday:
two day late research paper, preparing to fail a math quiz,
art sketches that aren't going to get done for the third week in a row-
nothing stays still long enough for me to draw and, yes, I can't make
straight lines, can you really blame me? What in this world is a
black line on a white page- I'd rather write in crayon.
Today should have been just another Wednesday.
But my goldfish died.
And it's sad, I can't even remember the last time I looked at it.
I guess before I leave for school I usually cast it a sideways glance-
but when was the last time I really looked at it?
I remember when I was six years old I used to get books from the library
on tropical fish and I'd press the pages against the tank-
"Look, kiwi, friends!" Like goldfish pornography. "I think you're prettier."
Who knows how many secrets that fantail heard.
First crushes. Lost soccer games. Probably all about that time
Holly "stole" my "boyfriend" on Valentine's day in junior high.
(Why we were fighting over a grade seven boy, I'll never know.
Especially since we were in grade eight.)
(And now I'll never know. Because Kiwi was the only one I told.)
We grew up together, he watched me change, I watched him grow.
(I never did any kind of growing up.) Watched me go from a blue eyed baby
to a green eyed bitch and blonde to brown to red to purple, from straight to curly,
from straight to whispering about girls the summer after grade nine.
High school he would have seen me cry countless times,
making him glad he wasn't a salt water fish.
And this morning, this boring Wednesday morning when I didn't wash my hair,
tied it in messy pigtails, threw on yesterday's jeans, for some reason just didn't
feel like trying... looking for shoes, I happened to glance over and...
he wasn't even floating. defeat.
"Mom, I think the fish is dead."
"Are you serious?"
"Why would I be kidding?"
"I'm wearing fishnets today," I whispered, one last secret.
It's almost like I knew. But I wasn't quick enough to catch you
and save you from drowning.