Blue. It is blue. It’s always blue. Sometimes I think I am colorblind. I don’t know what I really am, so I don’t know if I can relate to anyone else who sees blue. You can call me what ever you like, though. Those big things with fingers call me a fish. I guess fish see blue. All I see is blue. I live in a place that is very blue. And salty. So very salty. But I like salt. Salt is nice. I’m a little fish named Oliver. I had two parents, but they’re gone now. I’d like to know where they went, but I guess I just never will. I’m not even sure where I live. All I know is that it’s blue. Sometimes I see splotches of brown, red, green, and sometimes white. But, mostly just blue. It might sound strange, but I also hear just blue, too. It’s like a loud, clogging silence, with the occasional whisper of a sound, but those could just be voices in my head, because I’m so lonely. Just the blue and me. All of it is blue.
Then, one day, it isn’t –blue, I mean. I go to sleep and then wake up in an entirely new world. It is a light turquoise. Fake. I look around. Out in front of me is a chair and whitewashed walls. I swim toward them and then…pain. I floated down toward purple pebbles. My head is hurting, bursting. I realize I can’t go to the whitewashed walls. There is a sneaky, invisible barrier in between us. I’m in their world. Them, the Finger People.
Then, a little Finger person walks in, with an older one. The younger one bounces up to where I am, her button nose presses against the barrier. Her head is bobbing, but she doesn’t look like the other Finger people, ugly and cross. She is beautiful. Her face is pale and smooth. She has little dots sprinkled across the bridge of her nose and all around her rosy cheeks, like pretty little flakes of fish food. Her eyes are magical, a rich green, like lush seaweed. The thing that mesmerizes and stuns me the most is her hair. Thick and smooth, with waves calm like—like the blue. It is a blazing, fiery red, though, a color so intense, I could have never imagined it. Her wide eyes, with dark, thick lashes underneath dark, perfect eyebrows stare into mine, my bulbous, clear ones. She giggles and breaths on the barrier that is between us. I want the barrier to be gone, to crack, so we can be together. In the fogged up breathed on spot, she writes something with her finger.
She writes, ‘Rosie.’ Her name, I guess. Oh. Pretty.
‘Oliver,’ I try to write. I think she gets it because she nods.
“Hi, Oliver!” she says, her voice high and like a song. She must be a little person, like me, a kid, maybe seven years old. “I have to go see my doctor.” Rosie smiles. The tall, Finger person that is with her grimaces, and leads her out of the room.
I look around my surroundings. This place is weird. But, as the days pass, I begin to become used to it. Rosie comes once a week. I love her. She talks about nearly everything and it contents me just to listen to her pretty singsong voice. I wait mindlessly every day of the week until Thursdays, when she comes. 3 months pass, when, one Thursday, she doesn’t come. She doesn’t come the next Thursday either, or the next. A lot of Thursdays pass. Sometimes on Thursdays, a little bald girl, who has dots on her face like Rosie, will come in and smile at me, but it’s not Rosie, so I stay hidden inside the fake seaweed. Then, six Thursdays after I last see her, I see a paper on the desk in the office that said:
Rosalie McAdams — Deceased on the 11thof March. Time of death: 1:44:21 P.M.
Cause: Leukemia. Failed chemotherapy.
Dead. She’s dead. Underneath that is two pictures. One of the Rosie I knew, and one of the little bald girl who looked like Rosie. It was Rosie. Oh, I was awful! I can’t believe how stupid I was. She smiled at me. Her empty green eyes weren’t filled with happiness, like they were before. Of course they were. She was sick! She knew it! They all knew it! They didn’t tell me!
The last words she had said to me were “Bye! I love you, Oliver!” I love you too, Rosie, I think. I then decide I can’t live without her. I jump. I jump harder. I jump one more time with all the strength I have in me. Then I am out of the fake-blue and soaring through the air. I land on the paper. The water on me soaks into the words on the paper, those words that killed me inside, but didn’t have the mercy to finish off my outside. As my body slowly dries up, I cry. I cry for the first time. I cry for Rosie. I cry for the parents I never knew. I cry tears as salty as the vast blue oblivion in which I had spent the majority of my short life. Then, I lose consciousness. The end is blue. Blue.
Age 13, Grade 8,
Hunter College High School