It is a strange thing to wish to die. Strange to see the jaws of death open wide, see the bottomless darkness inside and find your heart with numbed fear. Instead you are eager for the point of that brief pain…
I am a single tendril of the wind, weakened by ages of weariness, renewed by divined wills. I blow around all the four
directions, moved by a perfect system set by the One God.
I have no home.
I am always on the move.
But now I stand still, watching a crack in the system I have always worshiped in the poise of a man standing at the very edge of the bridge’s rail. I know who he is.
His back is hunched, his skin is reddened by the sting of sun, his hands are roughened from the handle of his ax that had grown a part of him. And many times I have watched wrinkles form around his eyes as he squinted to the sun of every day’s end and inhaled air he had once so loved and smiled.
I know this man, yet it is hard now to recognize him.
He is stooping, he is beaten, the arms have lost the support of muscles, the face has forgotten how to draw a smile, and the eyes… striking in their haunted gaze.
The river stretches quiet below his toes, deep and thick with bottom that no feet can reach. He doesn’t look down, he stares ahead , lost to the world, swept aside by the tide of the oblivious crowd.
But we both know what shall take place. We both know and it can’t be saved.
It looks like it is too late.
So before I take off like I always do, I stand still, a different atom in this strange atmosphere, and I listen on his thoughts…
It all starts and ends with a sigh.
God sighed into Adam and he came to life. Mother sighed when the last push was over and I was born. And I sigh now, but I don’t feel it.
I am looking at you.
Who are you? what have you done with the one I’d once knew?
Unanswerable questions, I wonder how many times I have asked.
I see the world is increasingly taking after you. There is something dreadfully wrong
The air is tainted with smoke, the water is stale, murky with sneaky poison, your features are changing grotesquely and you are ugly like a nightmare from realty.
Oh, Great Mother, you once upon a time were a lighthouse of goodness, the beams of light that no body could put out, the one component that gave everything else sense.
Oh, time is treacherous, it feels like it never happened.
I witnessed your rises and your falls. At your core I choose no where else to go.
What is it that altered you?
Do you now feel old? Do you now feel the weight of time?
Are you about to buckle under this burden?
Do you know who am I? Do you remember my face?… or have you forgotten?
The years I broke my bones building you
The times when I suffered to hold the columns of your greatness upright
The centuries I bowed my head in respect, always loving you even when you shut the arms of comfort in my face.
And when you stepped on my spines to reach for the stars, spilled my blood to mark your territories.
Who was there for you, Great Mother?
Don’t turn the other cheek! How dare you deny me?!
It is me!!
I made you… I charted your plan on the desert sands. It was with the sweat of my brow that it became green. I constructed your cities, brick by brick… Taking pain and insults for the sake to see you great.
And I loved you.
From your short nights to the hard sun…
From your soil and dazzling gold…
From your floods to reemerging of life…
While your bones rusted and as I scuffed them clean…
Your lapses and regeneration of your cells…
Along tunnels of darkness with ends of blinding joy
Then he took the plunge, closing his eyes in surrender to the inevitable. A fall as silent as the fall of tears in this vast emptiness.
What a tragedy!
Other winds catch at me, trying to carry me along, but I am adamant. I want to stay. Even though I am but air, I cannot be contained.
I cannot be tamed.
And maybe, just maybe I will grab the peasant in time.
Maybe I will heave a sigh of freshness into this messed-up world.
My tears dried and I glided forward, certain that rotting in place is like the impact of whip on naked flesh… hopeful that this death would spring a new life.
© Copyright 2016 Laila Alexander. All rights reserved.
Book / Young Adult
Book / Literary Fiction
Short Story / Fantasy
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