How A Meatstick Lives And Dies

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Sharat Ganapati

A fragile meatstick is born unto the world. Like everything else, it has dreams of bigger things. Of becoming a bigger thing itself, of being able to stand on its own. To grow into that which could make a mother weep with joy and a father smile with pride. Enough that a lover would wake each morning and hardly reach over to grasp for what no other could provide.

How a meatstick begins, with aspirations. Sometimes taking a moment to ponder if it will mature into the member of society it hopes to be. At times finding itself with such fear and doubt, so much it measures itself against what others say it must be. Searching in the closet where the sewing needles and pushpins are and wrapping itself like drapes around a twirling songstress in a musical and hoping and praying that today will bring more than the last. Then to measure itself lengthwise as well, just to see. And if even one more millimeter is found, to consider its future clarion. A life unfettered from obstacles? Perhaps not, but to now see “obstacles” as a word others use to describe their limits.

A meatstick matures into adolescence and notices other meatsticks. Some with bushy manes, though some as glabrous as the day they came into this world as a piglet tail, a delicate roll of flesh. Some, as the stories go, are being used. Though they must be haphazard affairs, in the backs of cars and basements of parents, clumsily yanked about by those who don’t know enough about their own meat to be experimenting with others. These tales from the laboratory of youth are passed around in many locker rooms, so it’s no wonder a meatstick will find itself second-guessing if it will ever be loved. It may wallow in misgivings, unsure if it will ever know how to do what is most pivotal to its existence. It all begins to seem too complicated, and for a time a meatstick finds no water. At its most ripe, it withers on the vine under a shelter of its own making.

Oh, but a meatstick must grow, it must leave the place where the patriarchal meatstick resides. It follows a new path. Some will travel, by hopping of course, down a Godly way, taking refuge near their own buns. While others find themselves in all sorts of humidly lubricious, though oh so colorfully odorous situations. Plunging themselves headfirst into places they’d wanted to be since they first realized what they could do. Sometimes even receiving ovations, the ones they once believed reserved for the greatest meatsticks who ever lived.

For a time a meatstick lives in happiness, glad to know it is fully matured and can give and receive love. As that is the only thing a meatstick considers worth knowing. The benign tubular shaft wants love and nothing more. The excesses, the mind-numbing drudgery of going to a desk job or a factory or some other soul-draining drab building each and every day to earn money, how vain it all is. For a meatstick has a house. And a meatstick has food. And even if it needed to go work for something, how silly would it be? To put on a sweater and a fedora and khakis, how absurd. Two large turbines are working to keep everything at a regular temperature. So those other vestments, even if they could be bought, are unnecessary.

A meatstick moves into middle-age and settles down. And though it’s happy it doesn’t have to keep up with the joneses, it finds itself sadder to be called upon less and less. There was a time when it drank up the sun. There was a time when it hardly recovered from one rodeo before it was asked to get back on the bull again. But as it grows older a meatstick has to admit, everything is tougher than it once was. From getting up in the morning to getting up at night. Some meatsticks bemoan lost time. Others just bemoan the passing of it.

At last a meatstick comes to the end. No longer is it called upon to rise. Most can see it’s too feeble to even try. Even one attempt is a great risk to the rest of everything it has ever been attached to. Still, it can look back at its life and remember when it was little, burned with the thought that it would never grasp the fundamentals of life. At peace now as it nears the final resting place where it will become food for those who live in the ground and move like squiggly versions of itself, that it did figure all that out, that it did find and receive love well.

And for a meatstick, born unworthy of anything more than what it was gifted, that is more than enough. TC mark

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