LORD OF THE FLIES (1954) is an allegorical novel by William Golding about a group of boys, and their failure to govern themselves.
12/01/09 | Novel

Lord of the Flies

by Jennifer Jackson

I got it all over me, that wonderful sticky stuff. I didn’t even feel like showering. Made it a point not to. No, I wanted to remember this one—

Smells like summer: salt, cigarettes and steaming asphalt. The red clay swarmed beneath my naked feet; seemed like a good time to garden. I began digging next to the violet flock of petunias. I hate petunias. Uninspired, cheap bastards.

I’m going to plant tulips, my favorite. Seems fitting, since I really thought it was going to work this time. I’ve been wrong before, the daisies were a bad decision, too. I know that now.

Reruns of the last eight months played like clockwork behind my eyes. I just can’t figure it out. Oh well, no use bothering now. I’ll just keep digging.

The air cooled the beads of sweat from my forehead. It hadn’t rained in a while—the red clay was giving me hell. And as the sun’s rays peeked over the horizon, I knew I had to hurry.

It turns out that red clay can be manipulated if you have the right tools, and he was the perfect one.

The sun illuminates my tulip’s bed. It seems about right. The aromas brighter, now: yesterday’s perfume, yesterday’s bad breath and then there’s that sticky stuff. Time to go in now.

The house, in shambles: broken glass, broken chairs, torn clothes, broken door. I cock my head, purse my lips and begin to clean.

Two black trash bags, three rolls of paper towels and one ruined wall sconce later, I gather my shovel, tulip bulbs and organic fertilizer.

The bed was perfect: there was even room for the trash bags, paper towels and antique sconce.

I hate doing all that work only to bury the red clay again. I don’t even know if tulips grow in this stubborn stuff. Tired, pissed and sunburned, I go back inside. At least it’s clean now. Just empty.

I hate the house when it’s empty. Everything sounds louder. The TV is too loud, the phone is too loud. The alarm clock, piercing. I’ll have to start sleeping with a fan again.

I guess there’s nothing left to do but shower.

The water draining red with clay-covered sticky stuff, my head spinning. I need a drink.

I have to forget him. It only works if he never existed.