Fiction by Ira Huff

Revisiting the Beginnings of the Suicide Letters I Never Bothered to Finish Writing

I don’t know if you’ll ever read this, but I want you to know it was meant for you.

Mom, I’m sorry.

I came upon something today that was worth writing down. It gnaws at me the way frost aches bones into submission. It tires me awfully. It is beautiful:

“Has any one supposed it lucky to be born?

I hasten to inform him or her it is just as lucky to die, and I know it.”

Tonight I feel tremendously small.

I need to cry – so I conjure up horrid visions caught in the crevices of my forgetting. I also need to vomit. And if I vomit, then maybe I can pretend the counterfeit tears that accompany the retching are what I want purged from my body. But my eyes remain dry and now fail to recognize themselves in the mirror.

And worst of all, my tongue has become a mesa of choked earth. I am slowly sinking into the depths of my own undoing, and I cannot whisper a line of my despair.

Fuck you.

6 & 6a
Dying is mercy wrapped in silk.

Does that sound too poetic? Are we ever poetic enough?

Tell Dad this isn’t his fault because he left and moved in with Linda and forgot to send me a birthday present this year. Also, tell him that I forgive him for making me wait for two hours that one time after practice in high schoolbut that I am still mad about the other six times.

I am lightning drawn backwards into the sky. I sit quietly and count all the raindrops that have ever fallen, finding that more satisfying than any warm embrace. I am selfish in my silences, cultivating the misery.

I am me despite myself. I am me because no one else cared to audition for the part. But lately I’ve been performing to empty seats and someone has forgotten to shut off the stage lightsso I stand and I wither, waiting for the applause that will never come.

                                                                                                                                  George Eastman once wrote:

“To my friends

My work is done

Why wait?”

He then shot himself in the heart.


don’t ask

me why

this had to happen.

That’d be missing the point.


Ira Thorpe Huff is Haudenosaunee and resides on the Tonawanda Seneca Nation in Western New York. He received his BA in English & Textual Studies from Syracuse University and is currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, NM.