She felt the pull of death and it was welcome. She lay silent, worn from screaming, her voice unheard as she lay in the shallow box. She saw him coming, smelled him above her before he came into her blurred site. She didn’t curl into herself. She couldn’t. There was a time when her body reacted on its own, trying to save her. Now she lay still, waiting for the end to take her soon. Cold hands touched her face, ignored her whimpers, and shoved the box back under the edge of the bed. Unable to turn on her own, the tiny babe lay in her own waste, naïve and pure, unable to comprehend the horror of her own short life…and closed her swollen eyes to the world that stood back and let her die.
And now she lies in the peace of the Lord, her battered remains tucked discretely under a small marker in a field…where nobody has to think about her.
But somebody does. Someone wonders what happened to the sister who didn’t make it out. Some small boy remembers her in his prayers and in his nightmares. And there was a time…not too long ago…when he wondered if it would have been better if he had joined her in that box under the bed. For there is no joy in a world where abusers walk free. A world where insider trading is a capital offense punishable by a life sentence and those who beat their children until they no longer breathe are offered self-help classes at the expense of the state and second, third…even fortieth chances.
Ally. The boy whispers her name sometimes when he thinks nobody can hear him. Ally, he says and he closes his eyes. Ally. She was real. She needed us. And nobody heard her.