Saturday, March 9, 2013


Kara Campbell

They tell me I’m crazy; They say that’s why I’m in this place. 
I stare at the plain walls. 

My roommate, Delia, walks in, chattering about whales. I think they stuck me with her to balance things out. She is wiry and frail and her bleached hair sticks out and up and all over. She talks nonstop, never expecting an answer, which I am thankful for. 
They say she is delusional. 
I say we all are.

I would much prefer to live in a world like Delia’s. I would prefer to see things that do not exist, as opposed to having to deal with reality. I continue staring at the wall as Delia speaks. 
Her voice is high and frantic at all times, no matter the subject matter. 
A fight breaks out in the hallway between Jerome and Kip. I quickly check the time. 3:04 PM. 
I wonder how many days it will take for the staff to realize that Jerome and Kip are planning this.
I assume many days; The staff are not very bright. 

I continue to stare at the wall, until Melanie comes in to take me to dinner at precisely 5 o’clock. 
“Hello, Shane,” She says gently, I look at her. “Time for dinner,” 
I stand. 
“We’re having spaghetti tonight,” She tells me. I say nothing, but nod slowly in approval. 
We walk down the hallways in silence. 

Kip walks up to me in the cafeteria. 
“I know your secret,” He whispers. I smile. It does not matter, the staff will never accept that I am not crazy, and I am not done escaping from the world. Not yet. 
“You’re not really crazy, are you?” Kip asks, and Clara yells from the table nearby, “Of course he’s crazy you nitwit! He doesn’t talk!” 
I smile again. 

In fact, I am not crazy. 
I am perfectly sane. 

I walk away from Kip and eat my spaghetti. 

I do not know when I will decide to talk again. 

But I like the silence. 

So maybe never. 

On the Edge

On the Edge
Kara Campbell

The scissors snapped shut. Inches of black hair fell to the floor, and landed messily on the floor in a heap. I cut again. 
And again.
And again. 
And again, until all the hair on my head grew no longer than the tops of my ears. 
I stared at myself in the smudged mirror. 
I blinked. 

I stood in silence, staring at myself for what felt like hours. 

I ignored my mother screaming my name. 

I ignored the lightning that struck just outside my window. 

I ignored my cell phone rapidly vibrating on the counter. 

I counted the calls. 

One from Elise, one from Mally, one from Christian, One from Penelope. 

Elise called again, and I answered this time.
“Hello?” My voice, raspy
“Hey! You coming tonight?” She asked me.

“What! Why not!?”

I hung up the phone. 

Elise called again. 
I picked up my phone and dropped it in the toilet.
I looked back in the mirror. 

Leaving the bathroom, I left the note on my bed. 

I put my hood over my head and walked downstairs. 

My mother was yelling at me. 

I ignored her, and walked out the front door. 

I saw Elise’s car pull up in my driveway. She honked at me. I walked down the sidewalk, towards the Pier. 

Elise got out of the car and slammed the door. 
“Nelly!” She called, “Where you going?” 
I broke into a run, wind whistling past my ears, and rain violently pouring down. 
“Danielle Lisa Murray!” She screamed my full name after calling me twice. I didn’t look back. 

I reached the Pier, breathless with aching legs. 

I walked to the end of the pier, not paying attention to anyone. 
Every so often, I heard Elise yell my name, but I ignored her. 

I leaned over the railing and stared down at the water below me, thinking about the last few days. 

Thinking about my mother, and my dad, and Christian, and Mally...

Everything was falling apart.  

I climbed onto the railing and stared at the water, around thirty or forty feet above the water. 
Momentarily, I wondered If I would survive such a fall. 

My hoodie was soaked from the rain.

I stood up. People behind me gasped, and whispered. I ignored them. 
I heard Elise’s voice. 
“Excuse me, Excuse me,” She said, I assumed she was moving through the crowd. I didn’t look back. “DANIELLE!” She called. “What are you doing?”

Tears filled my eyes. 

“Nelly, Please, get down from there!” 

I unzipped my hoodie and threw it into the water, letting the wind rush over my arms and the rain  pour on my skin. They developed goosebumps and the cold sent shivers up my spine. 

“Nelly, Please, talk to me,” 

The wind stung my eyes. 


My steps faltered and I almost fell into the water. The crowd all gasped in unison. 

I heard someone call 911. 

I wanted to Die. 

Elise’s voice was chattering behind me, trying to convince me to come down. I didn’t pay attention, but I could hear the hysteria in her voice. 

I closed my eyes and focused solely on the rushing of the ocean below me.

I wanted to ocean to take me, to rush over me and block out the rest of the world. 

The waves crashed on the beach. 

The water rushed back and forth. 

The rain pitter-pattered on the wooden pier. 

Thunder rumbled in the distance. 

I took a deep breath, and jumped.