kungfuwaynewho: (americans ships)
[personal profile] kungfuwaynewho
It doesn't have to be like this.  Raquel told herself that every morning.  She said it to the mirror; she said it to her bowl of cereal; she said it to her toothbrush.  It doesn't have to be like this.

What was "it" in the sentence?  The most formless and meaningless of pronouns, and she made it the subject of her daily affirmation.  Was "it" her life?  Was "it" the day itself?  Raquel diagrammed the sentence one day, having to Google how to do it because she no longer remembered.  "Like this" was equally meaningless.  What was "this?"  Was it the sense of dread she awakened with, or perhaps the churning in her stomach?  Maybe "this" was the way she hesitated before putting on her kippah before service.  Or "this" might have been the way she winced when sat down to pee, still expecting to see blood, and it wouldn't have made any difference if she did, she hadn't been pregnant for months now, but she still winced and closed her eyes for a moment and forgot, for less than a second and for infinite ages, all that had happened.  Which just made it worse.

It doesn't have to be like this.  Not even an affirmation, really.  Two intransitive verbs and an infinitive.  There was nothing in the body of the sentence of substance, and the first verb carried a negation in its bones. 

Raquel whispered it to her shoes; she yelled it into traffic; she cried it in the shower.

It doesn't have to be like this.

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