I am now a pencil . . . but I began life a full two centuries ago as a tree. Oh, the things I saw, the revolutions I witnessed! You would probably be loath, as a human, to exist as a towering inanimate object, but I can tell you it was magnificent. Unfortunately, this all came to an abrupt halt when an insidious manufacturer came barging onto the set.
They arrived on a wondrous fall morning in a dump truck, still caked with dirt. There were no premonitions, no warnings, nothing indicative of the hardships to come. Only the heavy machinery that suddenly materialized a whole mile away, across a bald dirt field. Immediately, they hauled out sharp, whirring weapons with the intent of short-circuiting my epochal progress; they sliced my trunk straight through, separating me from my precious roots. I attempted to fight back, perhaps topple on top of them, but they were too prepared. I ended up in the back of their dump truck with a number of others.
The next thing I recall is awakening in the bowels of a sombre manufactory, if only to discover that I had been greatly violated. That is, I had been chopped into a pencil—a number of them actually, but my awareness was contained in just one. How unthinkably cruel! To be reduced from an old sprawling tree into a simple tool, a slave. I was soon packaged, dismembered, and shipped to faraway shores.
Then came the worst day of my centuries long existence. I had been taken to school by the boy and was in the process of “helping” him write a test. Strangely, the teacher spotted me—a mere three centimetres in size, I’d add—and instructed him to apprehend a new pencil. He did, and I ended up in the garbage.
Thus, for the past three months, I have been rotting amidst reeking piles of garbage in the local dump. I fear my time is approaching. But alas, it is for the better. I am far too old for this.
Joseph Vermette is a young writer living in Saint John, New Brunswick. He’s been writing poetry and stories from a very early age realizing by the age of 11 that he wanted to be a novelist. To read more of Joseph’s work or to purchase books he’s authored visit his website.