The First of, I Hope, Many--Yiyun Li

A near-perfect trope

From "Kindness"
In Gold Boy, Emerald Girl
Yiyun Li


Two days later they died, the one I named Dot and marked with ink on his forehead the first one to go, followed by Mushroom. I stole two eggs from the kitchen when my father went to help a neighbor fix a leaking sink--my mother was not often around in those days--and cracked them carefully and washed away the yolks and whites; but no matter how hard I tried I could not fit the chicks back into the shells, and I can see, to this day, the half shell on Dot's head, covering the ink spot like a funny little hat.

I have learned, since then, that life is like that, each day ending up like a chick refusing to be returned to the eggshell.

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