She lived in a paper house.  It was a paper house made from one-thousand paper cranes holding hope, dreams, and wishes.  And she say in her house folding the paper over and over again.  But no matter how many creases were pressed, the house blew away with the wind.  The bird never came.

At night she walked down the street.  Sometimes she walked to visit, listen to music, dance, or talk.  Or sometimes she drove with a companion and the discovered the river and gravel together.  Other times she went for a pack of cigarettes and a beer - the only dove in a field of ravens.  And as she stood in the parking lot she tried to look tough.  Some of the time she was hard; other times it was only a facade.

She would hand coins to the bums outside the gas station.  Sometimes she would find a razor blade and give it to the man sneaking up on her as she came home late at night.  And once she refused to give anything over to the boy knocking on her door asking for money.  After that she taped a knife to the wall.  And later, the knife came down because it had better uses.  It was also hard to explain why a paper house needs a knife taped to the wall.  People - ever her friends - didn't understand how she could possibly protect herself with a kitchen knife next to the front door.

"Get a gun," some of them said.

Others just merely chuckled at the idea.  But they did not deny it was dangerous place.  They understood sometimes it's hard to be the only dove in a field of ravens.  Doves stand out in areas like these. 

But nothing ever happened.  No matter how she tried, no matter how she stuck out, no matter how she put herself in situations she should have left to others, nothing ever happened.  She stayed safe.  She dance on Halloween, she held hands with strangers, and she answered the phone late at night when the number was Unknown.  Despite all this, nothing ever happened.  And even though her house was paper and held together with the thin, hollow bones of fragile birds, it kept her safe and away from the hands of those who could do her harm.


Leave a comment

    Add comment