Friday, September 21, 2007

EVOLUTION (short story)

Russ Mars
© 1970
November 13— There’s a wart on my hand. It’s on the palm of my right hand, where my thumb meets my wrist. I don’t know how it got there; I suppose a little grain of sand or a sliver of wood was embedded under my skin. I don’t believe it came from a toad (that’s just a silly wives’ tale about warts coming from toads). I first noticed the warts last summer. It was just a minute bump with a little black speck in the middle. I tried to pick it off, and I made it bleed. When it healed, it was bigger.
I had a wart in the middle of the same thumb right where the swirl of my thumbprint was, and the hole was crisscrossed with teeny lines of skin. It looked a lot like a spider web and it made me sick to my stomach when I looked at it. But the wart I have now is bigger.
January 17— The wart on my hand is gone. It got smaller and smaller and the only thing that was left was the black speck, then that disappeared. It didn’t leave a scar; that’s good because I hate scars.
January 24— I have a wart on my elbow. It’s bigger than the one that used to be on my hand. It hurts. I wonder why the other wart didn’t hurt. This one has two little black specks in it, one next to the other. They look like two little eyes. I’m certain this wart didn’t come from a toad because I’ve never touched one with my elbow. How ridiculous!
February 9— The wart on my elbow is gone. It looked as if it sank into my skin, slipping deeper every day as if my skin were quicksand and the wart was some poor creature caught in its midst. My skin finally covered it. Now there’s nothing there.
March 3— I have a wart on my ear. It sure does look funny! My whole ear is swollen and red. I thought the wart was a big pimple at first, the way it made my ear hurt. But it looks like the warts I’ve had before.
April 2— The wart is gone. I woke up this morning and looked in the mirror and it was as if it had never been there.
July 6— I haven’t had any more warts since the one on my ear went away. I’ve also been holding a lot of toads this summer. But no more warts. I guess that (croak) goes to show (croak) that toads don't cause (croak) warts. I’m sure glad (croak) I don’t have any more (croak) of those disgusting warts. Croak! Croak! Croak!

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