Writing: Short Story
Word Count: 1080
I am a grain of rice.
No. I am not! Don't call me that! I'm more than a grain of rice. I'm more I'm more!
Will you quiet down? The rest of us are trying to get some sleep!
No. No...I am more than a grain of rice. I have to be.
"Grain of rice" sounds so... well, it sounds exactly like that. Like a grain of rice. An insignificant seed in a ton of other rice. Just a grain. A grain can't feed anything, not a Twoleg, not a mouse. A grain is insignificant. It's exactly that. A grain.
A grain of sense never did anyone any good. A grain of rice won't either.
You should just get over it. You're a grain.
But I have a name, don't I? I'm not just "Grain" am I? I mean, he's Grain, and she's Grain, that guy over there is Grain. Momma was Grain, and Poppa was Grain, and Uncle was Grain, and Auntie was Grain. The same thing with you. Your momma was Grain, your poppa was Grain, your grandmomma was Grain, your grandpappy was Grain. You're Grain. I'm Gra--no! I can't be another Grain! I won't!
You should just get over it. We're all rice grains. We were born the same way, and we'll all end up the same way.
Hush up there youngsters!
...What'd you say?
I'm sorry! I didn't mean that to you!
...You better not've!
You've really peeved him this time. Here, just talk quieter.
...I don't want to be another Grain. Another ordinary Grain. I mean, nothing ever happens to us. The best we can hope for it to be eaten.
Well, it's not that bad. I mean, think of those that get smushed underfoot. Or the ones that don't make it to the Cooker and end up who knows where with the other wastestuff.
But that's just it! We don't have a life!
Do you call this living?
Well, we have a history to be proud of...and think about all the other kinds of rice out there. It's not just us. There's Chinarice and Vietnamrice...Japanrice and Thairice and Koreanrice....and oh--I've only named the Asianrices. You know what I mean. There are so many kinds of rices!
What about it?
Think of all the possibilities! We could be any of these!
Good point. So you're saying we should live for the opportunity to explore the lands? We'll rot before then! We'll die! And it doesn't matter what kind of rice you are; you get eaten or thrown out anyways.
No, you are, for trying to live complacently.
But what else are we? Am I? Aren't I unique? Doesn't the very fact that I can think make me...an individual? Can't I...be something...MORE than a grain of rice?
You're quiet today.
What about?...Oh please no. Look, just get over it and look happy while you can, ok?...You're perfectly special. You're one-of-a-kind. Don't worry about that anymore please.
But I'm still just a seed! A stupid rice grain!
You're being too harsh on yourself. You're fine the way you are.
Yea, but then by definition so is everyone else. We're each individuals.
What about this: You're the only unique one. Everyone else is just a replica of the same dumb rice grain. Me, her, him, that fat rice over there? We're all the same. You're the only one unique.
But that doesn't work either. If I were the only unique one...then I'd be really lonely in this world. And that's not the case anyways. There are rices that behave differently. Isn't there anyone else out there, just like me? Maybe even one of my own bowlmates! In the paper-bag? in the factory? In the field? There has to have been a rice grain that's thinking the same thing as me. There are just too many other rices for me to be completely alone! I need to find them! Maybe if we put our heads together, we could all come up with a way to all be unique!
Are you in a better mood?
I think so.
....Do you think we'll be off to the Cooker soon?
Maybe. Do you?
I don't know. Life is so unpredictable. We could be here or there or anywhere. It's like you said, we could be any kind of rice.
I mean, we could be any kind of rice. Any rice.
No! My point is, we could be any kind of rice we want...let me put it this way: have you decided what kind of rice you want to be?
Huh? Well, I think being an Americarice sounds fun. But a Europerice could lead a good life too. I don't know.
Well there you go. What if you became an Americarice but suddenly wanted to be a Europerice instead? What would you do then?
...I don't know....why? do you?
Nope. But that's life. Things will happen. Maybe you'll go off to the Cooker and I'll be tossed in with the wastestuffs. Whatever happens, sometimes things happen. We just have to wait and see.
...when did you become so profound?
Now I'm confused. What do you mean?
I mean that--oh never mind. Wait! Look! What's happening? Is this the Cooker?
We didn't end up going to the Cooker. We were given names by a long inky stick. The stick wrote on us, and we have names now. We were singled out. But there are a lot of us too. When I think about it, maybe we weren't singled out to be marked by the inkstick. Maybe the others were singled out to go to the Cooker.
He's "Write" now and she's "Your". He was marked as "Name", and that the one next to him is named "OnA". The guy next to me is "Rice". We're all very pleased with our new names. We are strung up in little clear-bags where the sun can touch us. It's almost like we're all back on the field, soaking up the bright-beams to grow. Who knew we'd be marked by the inkstick when we grew up? Maybe it was chance. Maybe it was silent prayers. Whatever it is, I think I'm happy here, in the clear-bag, where the bright-beams are, marked by the inkstick. I'm ok.
Oh yea-- My name is "Grain".
Artist's Note: This was from the beginning of Feburary but I didn't post if because I wanted to stick to the theme then and because I haven't written anything for a week now. Done for a club prompt.
No comments on anything for almost 2 months...:( :(