Phoenix Rising

Phoenix Rising by Cynthia D. Grant

Book: Phoenix Rising by Cynthia D. Grant Read Free Book Online
Authors: Cynthia D. Grant
breaking up was awful. He’d see me in the halls and nod his head … as if we’d met, once upon a time, and he remembered my face but not my name .
    He’s the most frightened person I’ve ever met, afraid that if he cares about something, he might get hurt. That’s why he acts so blasé, so cool .
    I feel sorry for him. (I am such a fool.) He reminds me of Lucas. They both go around in a self-imposed fury, faces frozen in a scowl as if telling the world: I don’t care if you love me! I don’t love you first !
    Good luck, Bloomfield, little rabbit, little darling. And good luck to Cheryl Prentiss and all the others (like me), who will think they can unlock his heart when Bloomfield holds the key .
    Don’t look back. Sadness makes you weak. I must move ahead. I must be strong .
    I got a wonderful letter from Ms. Tormey and the class, and lots of get-well cards from kids at school. It surprises me; I’ve always been so shy. I didn’t think anybody noticed me. The cards make it sound like I’m rebounding from the flu: “Hurry up and get well soon!” That sort of thing. People don’t know what to say about cancer. It ain’t considered polite to write: “I hope you don’t die.”
    Anyway, I’ve decided I’m going to live — long enough to be a FABULOUS success and grind my enemies to dust beneath my feet. Long enough to own a dog and name him Bloomfield .…
    Now, Helen June: It’s not nice to be mean .
    True, but meanness gives you spunk and juice and tastes so much sweeter than sorrow !
    The nurse just took another blood sample. What in blazes do they do with the stuff? Is this place called Transylvania General? Maybe Dracula wasn’t a vampire, just a misguided lab technician .
    I’m feeling tired today, but happy .
    For one thing, I’ll be home soon. It’s springtime and millions of flowers are blooming and I want to plant a vegetable garden .
    For another thing, I’ll graduate from high school next month . THEN what? I wish I knew. I guess in the fall I’ll go to the J. C., and then eventually I’ll major in English. Get a teaching certificate so I’ll have a way to eat while I’m waiting to hit the Big Time .
    I don’t expect I’ll ever be a Famous Writer but I’m sure going to try to be good. Not that I have a choice; I HAVE to do it; like birds gotta fly and Lucas gotta argue. It’s destiny. It’s in the blood .
    No matter WHOSE blood I have. I have to write .
    Here’s a poem for the culture section of How to Survive Your Life:
    Hope
    When you love someone
    you give him the key
    to your heart.
    You hope
    that he won’t come in and
    wreck the place.
    You hope
    that he will
    feel what you feel;
    see what you see.
    It’s like trying to meet for lunch
    in a dream.
    It is so unlikely
    that you will
    feed each other’s needs;
    follow each other’s leads;
    that you hope that,
    if you can’t come out of this
    together,
    you’ll come out of this
    alive.
    So relax, Bloomfield. I survived you — although it was nip and tuck for awhile. I put on this happy face (see illustration:) for Ma and Pa, meanwhile threatening to slash my wrists in the privacy of my/our bedroom every night. Jessie puts up with a lot. My moods go up and down. It’s partly the cancer and partly the chemo, and partly my giant crush on Bloomfield, which turned around and crushed me flat .
    Sometimes I don’t get the meaning of life. It’s like trying to put together a giant puzzle with half the pieces lost under the couch .
    Then I’ll experience a flash of understanding; realization breaks through my brain, like the time when I was little and I noticed that I had to keep swallowing spit all the time .
    Monumental breakthroughs like that .
    Once in a while I’ll wake up and think: Wow, I’m alive right now! The hugeness of the universe sweeps me to the stars.

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