fifteen years old

I am 15 years old. I have been having dreams about death. In my dreams, someone is holding me at sword point. I am locked in an embrace, 10 feet under water. I watch tiny kittens writhing on the floor. I feel the noose around my neck, the chair kicked out from under me, the pained eyes of my mother watching helplessly from the sidelines. A bullet lodges itself in my chest and I collapse into the sweet-smelling grass of my childhood backyard. I accept death. I feel nothing but relief.

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