Discovery

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic


Discovery

I sit on the mountain and wait. My stomach rumbles with hunger, and my tongue begs for cool, clear water, but I am patient. What was to be a routine one-hour hike with Robert has now surpassed a day and a half, and my muscles ache and yearn for a soft bed. But I am patient.

I contemplate things hidden—the sky beyond the clouds, with its endless creation and destruction of stars and planets. The transformation of sunlight into branches and leaves; of those into tissue and muscle for the hare; of those into nourishment for the wolf; of that into sustenance for buzzards and flies and bacteria. What once was will never be again.

I contemplate things revealed—the valley below me that emerged with the rising of the sun, teasing at first just the treetops, then gradually the birds and squirrels that sheltered themselves under the protective natural canopy. The location of the groundhog’s burrow, as it peeped out to scan for predators, and then surfaced to gather berries and clover in its furry cheeks. Robert’s text messages, which synched to the old iPad, long forgotten until I fished it out of the drawer yesterday. Robert’s look of comprehension when I recited the messages at the top of the mountain. His denial, then justification, then mitigation, then apologies.

Would that they’d sufficed.

My legs stiffen and I stand up and stretch. Again they scream for rest; again my tongue begs for water. But I am patient. I grasp the rocks and peer over the edge of the mountain once more, but he is still stirring, and it is not yet time. I return to my rock perch, wrap the green shawl around my shoulders against the cool mountain air, and wait patiently for Robert to stop screaming.


Submitted: September 14, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Amy María Sims. All rights reserved.

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