The Butcher’s Blade

Lying on the floor.

I am crying.

Can’t breathe.

He’s screaming, fist approaching my face.

No connection.

All I wanted to do was watch an episode of Gilmore Girls before I did the dishes.


I am alone, still on the floor.

I can’t breathe.


Getting up, I see the knife set.

An invitation.

I go for the largest one, the kind you use to slice off a fish’s head, slamming down with all of your might like a human guillotine.

On my knees.

The floor is wooden, smooth.

Still crying, still breathless.

Poised above my left forearm, palm up.

White, pale skin quietly interrupted by green veins.

Slice up, and it’ll all be done. You’ll be done. You’ll be free.

Everything is slow. A millennia passes as I prepare for my fate.



You can either end your last chapter at your lowest, or get up, and make the chapters of freedom, far from this darkness.


I don’t move. Time continues by slowly.

Lowering my arms. Getting up. The blade has been sheathed.

I walk away…..

Two days later, Mama signed the lease to our new apartment, and I moved out. He sent thoughtful e-cards, displaying his sadness in me leaving.

Was this normal?

That same day, I revealed my night in a fight with Stacey, and was sent to the counselor’s office. It was my second time there in two years. I returned for a follow-up visit later in the week, and it never came up again. Little was solved or sorted through.

In some ways, that was probably my fault. I always made sure to persuade them that I was fine. I was afraid of being locked up in a mental institution, like so many of my friends. I also was afraid of what they might find if they investigated my life. What it would mean for me.

Was it normal?

However, it can be easy to trick people into thinking you’re fine when all they are concerned about is avoiding a lawsuit. I saw the women who counselled me that week a year afterwards. She looked right through me. She didn’t remember. The school is her priority over anything else, much like it is for everyone there. I was not surprised, but I was hurt. I had hoped that perhaps maybe, someone had thought something was wrong. After all, it was my second time there for suicidal thoughts in two years. Perhaps he was right. I deserved what I was getting.


Published by

Brenna Renée Prather

Costume Designer. Writer. Artist.

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