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A solitary, tiny brown ant never bothered me. Even four or five.
After my husband entered his slow-motion, black-and-white dreams, I indulged my night-owl tendencies. When my blurred eyes could no longer see the words on the laptop screen, I stumbled into the bathroom. A flick of the switch, and a few ants skittered across the floor.
I tolerated the ants at first, but then they multiplied. Each night, I crawled around the cold, tile floor, mashing them with the pad of my thumb. So small they didn’t even warrant a barrier between my finger and their broken bodies. Down the drain they went, swirling out of sight with the soap suds.
A week later I walked to work, sunlight inducing dizziness and euphoria. My oblivious foot almost stepped on a dead bullfrog—its bloated body, barely discernable, covered with tiny, brown ants.
Filled with rage and violence, I wanted to strike them with my foot, scatter the parasites across the cracked pavement.
Collected together, a teeming mass of shiny exoskeletons moving as one, an intimacy that frightened me.

2 responses to “Ants”

  1. Owen Owen says:

    This is great. It's short but elusive. When I got to the end, I had to immediately read it a second time!

  2. acb123 acb123 says:

    saying that you immediately read my piece again upon finishing it is high praise indeed! thanks for your comment, which made my week! :0)

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acbauch123 About acbauch123

Amanda C. Bauch, writer, editor, and teacher, has an MFA in Creative Writing from Lesley University and is currently working on a young adult novel and a memoir. In her “free” time, she works as a freelance dissertation editor and formerly served as Assistant Editor for Relief: A Christian Literary Expression. Her short fiction has appeared in Tattoo Highway, Bent Pin Quarterly, The Hiss Quarterly, and nonfiction pieces have been published in Writer Advice, Empowerment4Women, as well as two print anthologies, Tainted Mirror and MOTIF: Writing By Ear. She also won an honorable mention in the 2007 Writers’ Workshop of Asheville Memoir Contest and second place in the 2006 Lantern Books Essay Contest. Her viewpoint often derives from her dysfunctional family history, relationships, Christianity and spiritual issues, and random nonsense.

Read more by this author on 30POV .


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