Lion in the corn

Lion in the corn

We were on a highway making our way to the city when we passed by a cornfield. I was sitting in the backseat along with my little sister, Jane, who was sleeping like a rock, and I had my face pressed against the window, just gazing outside as the world sped by. I wished the drive was over; we’d been in the car since the morning and I was super bored. Plus, Mom and Dad barely talked up in the front because they were mad. They had fought about something back at home and they still weren’t forgiving each other.

Anyways, we rode our little car down the highway and passed by many grassy fields and huge plots of land ready to be seeded. Dad was driving smoothly on a curve when I saw the cornfield, each stalk way taller than me. We pulled over because Dad had to pee and I sat there, staring out the window at the stalks that moved peacefully with the wind.

There was a lion staring back at me. I couldn’t believe it. It was barely visible through the stalks, but I somehow spotted its eyes, then I managed to make out its huge head and bushy mane. What was a lion doing in a cornfield in the middle of Nebraska?

I told Mom and Jane to look, but Mom didn’t believe me, didn’t even turn to see, and Jane was still sleeping with her mouth slightly open. I sort of wanted to go outside to check out if the lion was real, but Dad climbed back into the car and turned on the engine. The lion’s big, yellow eyes grew wide and it turned and disappeared into the corn. Dad drove off and I didn’t see the lion ever again.

So years have passed and I’m not a little girl anymore, but I still scan the corn stalks whenever I drive on the highway and pass by the cornfield. Any cornfield, not just the one I saw the lion in. Sometimes I think it was all just a hallucination, but part of me believed that the lion was real. I had stared at it, and it had stared back. It knew I was there, sitting in the car. In honor of that weird and special day, I got a tattoo of a lion on my waist, peering through stalks of corn. Whenever somebody asks about it, all I say is that I saw a lion in the corn. They keep asking questions, but it’s all I have to say.

I saw a lion in the corn.

by Ralph Serr


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