Writing Prompt: In 250 words, answer this question: What would have happened if you didn’t leave the house this morning?
Chris C. from Portland State
Title: Since I stayed home today, this has never been written.
I stayed home this morning and the rubble is still visible. There’s no collection of bits and bytes to mark my passing or invite anyone to the show. Thirteen people don’t know that all it takes is a single leap of the heart. I’m still a stranger to the people down the hall. This morning, when I shut off my alarm, invisible shockwaves rippled through the city and nothing I’d have set out to do was done, although there was still traffic in the streets and people went to their classes or met friends for lunch. Out there, somewhere, there’s just enough disappointment caused when I rolled over and pulled the blankets over my head thinking, it is too cold and too wet to crawl out of this, to make the day grayer. This morning, the bus was still packed, but one person had just a little more room. Maybe two. No apology was necessary when my backpack didn’t scrape against a man listening to music, and he was free to continue thinking about what kind of movie the music would be in. When I didn’t leave the house, my part—the one that cannot be seen from space—was lost. Forever. I made no new friends, or enemies, didn’t give the man with one arm a dollar for a newspaper, never said anything about the book I read and generally didn’t make much of a difference, where I otherwise would.
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