Sattie’s Rock

Sattie Iyre spent all of her time with a rock in the meadow.

She was born near the giant monolith, a tombstone-like protrusion awkwardly situated in a dandelion-ghost field. Her mother, a wild lady, spewed her violently from the womb, and when Baby Sattie hit her head against the rock, the harsh moment knocked comfort and habit into her all at once.

As a girl, she played by the rock, decorated it with colorful flower and mushroom stickers, and shouted over it to her friends who romped and laughed on the other side, out of view. Her side was a private and sacred grassy refuge, and imagining what her friends looked like was just as good as the real thing.

When Sattie became a young woman, her friends’ laughter dissolved and mutated into a faint perpetual police siren crying from the far-flung city. She tried to conjure what they might look like, but she could only see smeared faces of children with disproportionate features. The solitude led her to reading, which led her to writing, which led her to a love of writing. The rock transformed into her notepad, a stone tablet to tattoo her language on, a rough-hewn memoir. It became skeletal with each cursory thought and every pummel, thwack and clobber. It became deliriously adorned with incomplete sentences, which turned into labyrinth-like scribbles that required one to cartwheel in slow motion to read properly. Where one sentence started, the next began perpendicularly until conspiracy theorists might say she was carving stars of Baphomet. She promised herself and her parents that one day she would push the hefty stone into the city square where the townspeople and children could read her work and marvel at her opinions, then go about their days tossing crackers at ducks.

She sat with the rock, ate with it, talked to it, hid her belongings beneath it, masturbated on it, asked it questions, went to sleep by it, and woke up with it. Bats, birds, grasshoppers, wild dogs, and potential lovers whistled and barked as they passed, but the rock was her nucleus. She knew her whittling would pay off and often daydreamed about her wrists bending, propelling her stone libretto to town where it would become a city figurine.

Her parents worried, and they tried to disrupt her rock routine by asking her to attend the Zoo Fair in summer. She agreed. The day of the Fair, the fairest of fairs, she hired movers, and the rock joined her on the trip, wheeling by in a pick-up truck as she ogled zebras and nodded at monkeys. Her parents sulked and never bothered her about it again.

Sattie died by her rock, which was slender as a cactus by then, and was found with a chiseling tool in her hand. The coroners discovered pounds of pebbles inside her intestines, rock silt in her blood stream, and a crooked spine from years of hunchback carving. Her freshest chiseling read: I have nothing to say.