A Ladybird

Laura Labno

© Copyright 2018 by Laura Labno

Photo of a ladybird beetle.

I was sitting on a park bench. It was a warm and pleasant day. It was early in the evening and the setting sun was still gently hitting my back. I could smell all the good things one could smell during such a day; the fresh evening air, green grass and spring flowers. Yes, it was a good day, a beautiful day indeed but I wasn't able to apprecite it. My head was filled with thoughts that were dark and gloomy and even the brigteness of the sun wasn't able to overcome their depth. I was holding my notebook in my hands and all I wanted was to express all these things.

The problem was that I couldnít.

I wanted to draw, or write, or tear the notebook apart. I just wanted to do with it whatever would allow me to get rid of that horrible cloth in my throat.

And simply, I could not move my hand. I couldnít even move my finger. I was like frozen on the outside while inside of me there was a storm.

All the people passing by seemed to be so happy pretending that they didnít see all these things I could see. Or maybe they did not pretend, I wasnít quite sure. They seemed so satisfied in their little worlds, so focused on their everyday lives. I was jealeous in fact. Everyday I was waking up seeing the huge picture that others apparently could not notice. The pain in my heart was growing and I wanted to cry but I wasnít able to produce a single tear. And then, there, out of blue, it happened;

I saw her.

It was a woman, a huge and disgusting woman. Oh, she really made me want to vomit. It seemed as if she was a personification of everything that was causing all my suffering. She was fat, no... not fat - porky. She was wearing shorts and a pink t-shirt, which was too small for her. Her belly was shaking like an enormous jelly. She was pushing a pushchair with one hand and in the other she was holding a burger. I could see very clearly her hand moving, as if in a slow motion. The burger reached its destination, her oral cavity opened. She took a heavy bite, a bite which, as I was sure, she did not need. This was her entertainment, short pleasure, self-focused act. I could hear her body begging to stop and I could hear, somewhere afar, thousands of weak voices groaning from hunger.

A drop of ketchup dropped on her t-shirt, she didnít notice it. I heard her squelching. It was so loud! The earth seemed to tremble from this horrible sound. And, as if somewhere in the background, mooing of a cow which was being mangled in a machine... Oh, I did not want to hear it! I wish I could cover my ears but I was still like frozen.

The burger was wrapped in a piece of paper. It was making a swishing sound as she was squashing it in her puffy fingers. And again, I could hear something else in this swishing too. It was a swishing of leaves growing on trees and then... a loud sound of a saw and the noise of falling woods and squeaks of animals, and oh, suddenly I felt like there was no more air I could breath in...and I got so scared, I thought I'd die. I regret I didnít die in fact as it was merely a prelodium of the worst part of this grotesque scene.

Her feet were so big and her stamping was so resounding that I could not hear anything else anymore. But sadly I did not lose my sight.

I saw everything so expressively and aquilinity. There was a small ladybird on the path. Lovely little creature, it was red of course, and had four black dots on its' back. It wasnít moving, it seemed to be resting. It didnít make any sense to me. This monstrous woman was getting closer and closer and it still didnít move. My forehead got sweaty from the pressure, and thenÖit finally made a move.

It started running, moving its' short legs as fast as it only could but unfortunately it was too late. The monsters' leg lifted and fell with a sound of an earthquake on the last beautiful thing in the world that existed for me in this moment. I knew it was gonna happen and I had this horrible feeling that the world would end at this moment. It could not last anymore, how possibly could it?

But then, all of a sudden, everything turned normal again.

The woman passed next to me. Her movements werenít slow, and her stepping was not loud anymore. And I could finally move.

I could breathe and smell flowers and feel the heat of sun again but I didnít want to draw nor write anymore. I just wanted to cry.

And I did cry, indeed, for long and empty hours, looking at the dead body of the ladybird,

I was crying so long that finally it turned into an invisible dust,

And flew away into its unmeasured eternity.

Contact Laura

(Unless you type the author's name
in the subject line of the message
we won't know where to send it.)

Laura's story list and biography

Book Case

Home Page

The Preservation Foundation, Inc., A Nonprofit Book Publisher