The Empty Swing | Verso.ink

The Empty Swing

Inspired by the sadness inside us all

By Ella Zundel

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I remember the day we heard about his death.

I’d sat, and waited for him to show up.

The playground was empty all except me, and his swing sat unoccupied beside mine.

I stared at my red boots, digging my toe into the damp sand that covered the length of our childhood play place. I’d worn the white sweatshirt he’d given me for my twelfth birthday, and a black hand-me-down skirt from my older sister.

My hair had been down, disturbed only by gentle breezes that flew lightly over the valley.

His swing creaked with the whisper of the wind, and my heart fell.

He was never late.

He shouldn’t have been late.

He knew today was important to me.

Yet, he never showed.

And so, my best friend died on my birthday.

His funeral was not the first I’d attended, and certainly not the last.

I hadn’t had the courage to approach his coffin. I just hadn’t had it in me.

Instead, I’d stared at my black shoes, having thrown my red ones, the ones I knew he loved, deep into my closet.

They’d told me I could cry, but I’d ignored them.

Crying didn’t fix anything.

And it wouldn't bring him back, so what exactly was the point?

I’d told them it was my fault, and that I was sorry. All they said was it was okay to grieve.

It was okay.

But it wasn’t.

It wasn’t.

If they’d known, that is I hadn’t gone to the playground on that day, then he wouldn’t have come to meet me… and been hit by that car.

It wasn’t okay.

It wasn't okay that I’d killed my only friend, it wasn't okay that our childhood, our past, our playground, was gone all in one moment.

It wasn’t okay that I could still swing, when beside me, and inside of my heart, there would always be…

The empty swing.

Mnar Pbcyvat

P.S
sometimes people (me... or one of our other friends)
just what someone to talk to,
Even if they don't act like it,

If you see someone (again me... other's)
acting upset, or sad, or are over exaggerating everything,
dont talk,
just put you arm around them,
pull them into an warm embrace,
And say "everything is going to be alright"

And everything will.

Mnar Pbcyvat

Ella you have real talent, not like me who cant even write a sentence correct,
I know you, I know you personally,
And even though you can be confusing
And scary,
you have always been there for me,
even when I didn't want you,
And that is why you will always be welcomed as one of my friends,

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About Ella Zundel

Ella Zundel started writing at the age of 7, and started reading much before then. Even today, she's more of a reader than a writer when it comes to finishing anything, but that doesn't stop her from coming up with even more stories she won't be able to finish.
She progressed in the work of words and is still coming up with ideas today, getting inspiration from numerous things like her friends, staying up late in the rain, looking at pictures online, dreams,sitting and staring into space, and, yes, pasta.
She lives in Missouri with her family, 4 murderous cats, 2 dogs (and 8 puppies) and a bunch of good-for-nothing chickens, who she talks to whenever she's sad.

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