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Yard

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Thwarted ambition. What does one say?

My third foot didn’t grow very well. Compared with my other two it was very small. It wasn’t useful at all. I could see what was meant to be a foot and it was badly deformed. I knew I had to do something about it if I was to become a yard.

Maybe people are like balloons and slowly we are inflated. I knew I couldn’t depend on that. My Dad said that manure makes things grow. He said it makes onions and cucumbers grow really well. The biggest pansies he grew were with manure too. He always spread plenty, mostly horse manure, because he said it was as good as any.

I was determined to become a yard and had no choice. In the morning I filled my underpants with horse manure after putting them on. During the day it was exciting. I knew it was working because it was so itchy. I kept wanting to scratch but I was a good boy and didn’t.

That night, my Mum complained there was something that smelled unpleasant. She just couldn’t put her finger on it. My Dad knew nothing about it; he couldn’t smell anything. Later, she noticed the smell seemed to be following me. Then she asked me to come with her to my bedroom. She asked what it was that could be so smelly. I didn’t have a clue.

With that, she quickly had my pants down and found the horse manure. She might not have been able to put her finger on it before but now she had her hands full of it. It was at that moment I knew I was in big trouble.

My Mum was sick, she ran to the toilet and I could hear her. When she came back she dragged me to the shower. In the shower, as she scrubbed me, she coughed and she seemed to be sick but nothing was coming out. She was trying to talk too. I looked down, hoping my third leg was bigger, but was so disappointed. Around my third leg the skin was very red and there were big blisters. I started to cry.

My Mum wasn’t happy with me at all. She wanted to know why I had done it. Somehow, I knew it wasn’t a good idea but I told her that I wanted to be important. I wanted to be a yard.

“What does that mean?” she asked. When I told her that three feet make a yard and I only needed another one she stopped. I could see her thinking. Then she started to laugh. She wouldn’t stop. I asked her not to and I told her that if manure makes onions, cucumbers and pansies grow it would also help my third leg to grow.

The blisters were hurting. She shouldn’t laugh. It was serious. My third leg was covered with blisters. I know I wanted it to be bigger but not like that. My Mum went and got my Dad. They were both laughing. It was getting worse.

They decided I should see the doctor. My Mum rang, and dressed in different clothes, I was quickly on my way. My old underpants were in the bin.

The doctor already knew lots about me but when they told him what I’d done he laughed. He couldn’t stop laughing. He gave my Mum a cream that he said should be put on my blisters twice a day. He gave me an injection. I didn’t want it but he said it was important and he laughed while he made me cry. He wasn’t very helpful He told me that manure was good for onions, cucumbers and pansies but not for me. He told me that I’m not a pansy. I already knew that.

I still want to be a yard. My Dad gave me a ruler. He said it was a foot and with my other two it made me a yard. I don’t think he understands.

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