IN A MOOSE LANGUAGE ONLY SHE COULD UNDERSTAND
In a coastal town in southern Florida a beautiful moose was born into a loving family. There was a mother, who stayed home and baked cookies, and a father, who went to work at an architectural firm where he designed tunnels and bridges that spoke to humanity's longings for the intrinsic qualities of nature within a structure made of steel and concrete. But this beautiful moose was unhappy, almost from the day of her birth. She wore a sad expression on her face daily. She talked only of sadness and pain and despair, but in metaphysical terms her parents could not understand. At Christmas she felt guilty because she received expensive Barbies and pogo sticks and tinker toys when other children were searching landfills for food. She cared nothing for school and stared out the window while contemplating the number of times the wind blew a dandelion bloom into the side of a building. Her teachers called her lazy. Her parents went to parent-teacher conferences and shook their heads. Her mother could not understand why, her father banged his fists against the wall and cried. The sadness of the beautiful moose was starting to affect the stability of the marriage. Soon there would be an affair with a beautiful bookkeeper. Soon the black leather couch and the dining room table would be all the furniture left in the house.
One day, in her freshman year of college, the beautiful moose became enraged with the world, so enraged that she contemplated killing her roommate, her biology teacher, her boyfriend and his dog. She did not understand why she thought of doing these things. She went to a well-recommended moose psychiatrist and told of her fears. The moose psychiatrist wrote down things like passivity, acceptance, indifference, ineffectual rage, and counteractions. He wrote PRIVATE and CONFIDENTIAL on her file and locked it in a mahogany-colored filing cabinet. He gave her a prescription for Xanax. The beautiful moose did not feel any happier, but she also did not care that she was unhappy. She did not kill her roommate or her biology teacher or her boyfriend and his dog. No one ever found out about the file. She graduated with a degree in animal husbandry and married a man who would become a prominent meteorologist at a highly-ranked local station that was independently owned by an environmentalist who believed in Global Warming and drove a hybrid SUV. They were a happy family. They moved to a small forest in Anchorage just far enough outside the city limits. They sharpened their antlers on glaciers made of blue ice and ate clover in the springtime. It was a magical world, but it would not last for long.
When the beautiful moose became with child she was blissfully happy for the first time in her life. She knew just what kind of mother she would be, she knew the games she would play with her moose child, the fun they would have at the park. But after the beloved moose child was born the meteorologist became moody and defensive. He became jealous of the moose child and worried that he did not make enough money to support the three of them. He spent nights away from home, telling his moose wife he was working hard to earn extra money. The moose wife became sad again, she painted every room in the house a different color, took up needle pointing and participated in a weekly Jazzercise class but nothing worked. She did not like staying home with the moose child when the meteorologist was out earning money so she ran away to New York, leaving her moose child behind. The meteorologist became enraged and threatened to keep the moose child from his beautiful moose wife unless she came back home. The moose wife became even sadder but she could not go back home. Instead she moved halfway back and settled in Montana, spending the rest of her life wishing that she had killed the meteorologist in his sleep long ago.
By this time the moose child was as sad as her mother had ever been and started cutting down trees with her antlers as a release from the pain and suffering. The meteorologist built her a canoe. The moose child carried the canoe to a campsite to embark on a soul-searching trip that she hoped would bring clarity to her life but a group of campers made fun of the way she talked so she beat them with the canoe instead, killing eight park rangers, two Inuit’s, and an Alaskan Husky/Chow mix dog that was eating a peanut butter sandwich from the trash. When the rampage was over the moose child stood in the canoe, waiting for the police to arrive. Later the meteorologist would blame his beautiful moose wife for the problems of the child and the moose wife would accept complete responsibility. Later the moose child would dream of a life in Japan from her prison cell and speak to herself in a moose language that only she could understand.