The Tiny Pink Piggy

I keep seeing a tiny pink piggy in the corner of our living room. It sits frozen on the spot and weeps, and only I can see or hear it. I've been to doctors and they gave me pills, but without fail every afternoon the tiny pink piggy keeps appearing in the corner of the living room, right next to where my brother Robert plugs in all his TV equipment. It just sits there with tears running down its round pink cheeks, its stare lost in the distance. I glance around to see if there's anyone watching from the road, I check that the neighbors' mean kids aren't staring from the garden, then I draw the curtains shut and kneel down to try and comfort it.

For a long while I had tried to make it tell me why it was so sad, but it never did. I tried being sweet to it, I showed it my photo collection, I showed it my jewelry. I brought my guitar and sang it 'Kiss Me' by Sixpence None the Richer. It was as if I wasn't even there. One day I even brought it some garbage and watermelon skins, because I once read that is what pigs like to eat, so I thought that maybe it would be distracted by the food and eat, and that this would take its mind off whatever was troubling it, but it ignored me.

Another day I put a porcelain piggy next to it, hoping that it would feel it had a friend it could relate to, perhaps one who it could open its heart and tell its sorrows to. I thought that at least this would provoke some reaction. But just like every other day it ignored everything and wept. Eventually I gave up trying to get any response from it. Now I just talk to it and say positive things, hoping to cheer it up. I tell it jokes and Robert's news, and all the funny things I saw on TV that morning.

It's hard to watch a tiny pink piggy be so sad. It looks so lonely, weeping next to all those plugs. I used to keep a box of tissues near the TV to wipe the piggy's tears before they could get on the wires. I was afraid that they'd damage that brand new TV Robert got recently, oh he's so proud of that TV set, he brings the lads home on Sundays and they watch rugby on it, they have such fun, bless 'em. I make sandwiches for everyone and they let me sit and watch with them, it's great.

Even though I do try to laugh with them and be "one of the lads" as they say, it's not very easy because I can hear the piggy sob in the corner. When I go to get beers for the lads I catch a glimpse of its despairing eyes and it breaks my heart every time. The worst part for me is that I have to ignore it when other people are around: Robert doesn't want me to tell the lads anything about the piggy. He says they'll think it runs in the family and they'll tell people and he'll lose his job. He says that he couldn't afford to take care of me anymore and that I'd have to go away.

How I wish those doctors could come up with some pills that make all of this stop. Once my ear catches the sniffling and the weeping in the living room I can't ignore them, they just stick in my head and distract me from anything that I might be doing. I feel so useless. Sometimes I break down and cry along with the piggy. I wish I knew how to make it happy but I just don't know how. I blame myself sometimes and say that I haven't tried hard enough and if I cared more I could make it stop crying, but I'm at my wits end. The sniffling and sobbing just goes on and on, every afternoon, day after day. However much I try to get used to it, the piggy's sorrow becomes more unbearable as time goes by.

Every afternoon as that time draws near my insides sink and I feel a knot in my throat. I close my eyes and pray that this time around those sniffling sounds won't come from the living room, but they always do. Some days I run out of the house gasping for air, wanting to run away from it all. Then I stop and think of how the piggy will be even sadder now that I have abandoned it. I run back inside and sit next to it and pretend that I had just popped off to the news-agent and gotten a newspaper and tell it all about my walk and how the neighbors are doing, and about all the new faces in the neighborhood, but the tiny pink piggy just sits in the corner with despairing eyes and cries and cries.