Thursday, March 29, 2012

Per Your Suggestion #3: "Ostracized Ostriches"

Today's story/post is based on another great suggestion by my friend, Bryce Kime. The writing prompt Bryce offered in this case was the deceptively simple phrase: "ostracized ostriches." I took that catchy couplet and just rolled with it! The resulting story is slightly absurd yet surprisingly literary. Hope you enjoy!


We are the forgotten ones – the ones you never think of when you're scratching out your invitations to the wedding, the birthday party, or the bar-mitzvah. We are the neglected, the rejected, the unwanted – and you think it doesn't matter to us. You think we don't mind your exclusions, assuming that we'd rather be doing something else anyway – like playing checkers, getting our teeth cleaned, or flying. That's the heart of it, isn't it? You resent the fact that we can take flight whenever we like, while you are eternally ground-bound. We are the weirdoes, the mutants – because we have wings that not only propel us forward but upward. We take off and soar to foreign lands to sample the cuisine, take candid snapshots, and return when the weather is warmer. You are stuck here – running, running, running, always running, but getting nowhere. We are the losers, the squares, the avian pariahs – just because we don't look or act like you, is that any reason to hate us? We can't help the way we were born. So we fly, and you don't – that makes us different, true, but it also makes us interesting. We're not asking you to love us, simply to take interest in us, to acknowledge for one moment that we exist. Instead you screech carelessly that we're nothing more than folklore or some cleverly devised urban legend which you can easily dismiss. But we do exist – you could see us right in front of you, if you only had the courage to look. We are the black sheep, the chopped liver, the pond scum of your world – but why? We are ostriches – just like you, but not like you – and you ostracize us with your squawks and with your actions. In the end, who wins?

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