Imagine the grass stained knees from rolling around in the jungle. Imagine the laughing that floats lazily through the air. Imagine the lemonade spilled on your dress-up shoes, into your perfect, white socks. The socks that, later, would be running through the jungle at top speed, so everyone could only see flashes of your passing body, arms racing and pulling your forward, pumping back and forth.
Imagine the people chasing you, COPS. Only not cops at all, in fact, just ghosts.
You run because it's a game, and you're playing. You put your foot in, got counted.
Imagine running to the edge of a cliff, and looking down.
But it's not a cliff, it's not a jungle. It's the edge of your apartment building, and you're bundled up in a thin cotton sweater that's slightly too big.
You clamber up to the edge of the railing, sitting on the concrete blocks. It's easier to get up, you notice, so it's easier to tell you've grown.
But you're weak.
Slowly, you pull both legs over so they're hanging off the building, and you watch the people walk below you, living a normal life.
Hours pass, your lips turn blue, but you do not move.
The cops are right behind you, in all their grey, non-existent fashion. You don't dare turn around, but you know snakes are curling up behind you, their poisonous jungle fangs out.
"Shoo, get," you say. "Go on."
The silence on their parts tells you to jump.
But you do not move, you do not move.
Imagine the grass stained knees, stained socks, soaking in the dirty swamp water, grey skin. Is that what you want? No?
Then imagine it dipping into fresh spring water. Sliding in, stepping in, into a river? Into the water, cold. Clambering over rocks, over bottom scum, but it's nice and fresh. Into the water, and you're breathing clean for once.
Greenery surrounds you, rare birds cawing and chirping. Echoes of dreams you never had.
Silence from the cops, from the robbers. Silence all through-out the jungle, until one of your ghost friends bumps your back, and you slip.
The ice cracks off the concrete building and falls through air with you, as if you were suspended outside someone's window. But then you fall, and fall, and you're on the ground, the ice sitting nicely on your sweater, melting through it's soft blue fabric. Blood pools at the sides of your ribs, from your head, your ears, your skin.
Puncture wounds, holes, rips and tears.
"Ouch," you think, your last dying thought.