Bright light shines
As egrets call
And small hands
Bright light shines
As egrets call
And small hands
Of reversed light
Upon the expanse
On the canvas
Of the body,
In the negative of film.
They dance upon
Of brown and gold.
For the dVerse Quadrille Challenge
He was an amateur in
Of the heart.
Oh, he prided himself on being
Of the physiological
And perhaps a tinkerer
But he was not even
He lacked all expertise
In the understanding of
I glanced across the chasm. For someone born and raised in the Alps amidst sharp elevations, I was woefully unequipped. Sometimes I wondered what Karma I’d accumulated to explain it.
“You are protected, Dania.”
I looked up desperately at my mother, who wore an encouraging smile and already had one foot on the swaying bridge and a hand held out to assist me. Even as a baby I’d been known to tremble at the sight of any height, yet Mother’s optimism never wavered that one day her offspring would overcome what to her was an incomprehensible fear. She adored climbing.
Why she took me to Bhutan.
“This bridge is blessed,” my mother tried. “You’ll come to no harm.”
“I cannot,” I whispered, my legs shaking. Each prayer flag a flutter to match mine, the river vertiginous miles below. “No prayer will suffice. My very soul knows it’ll die.”
No amount of soap and water could clean up this mess.
Even if I were to try, I wasn’t quite sure how I’d go about it, or if the effort was worth the results. Perhaps it’d be better to burn the whole thing to the ground and start from scratch.
I eyed the matches on the stove and looked at what I could no longer justify keeping around.
I wouldn’t miss most of it. Or so I had to hope.
My fingers struck a match and I held the small flame to the ring, amazed as always by how easily it grabbed hold and circled to make a blue-yellow-purple circuit of heat.
The fire leapt and danced and hissed.
It was time to wave good-bye. I needed a fresh beginning.
I set the kettle on to boil, sat back down, and hit “Delete.”
I watched its solitary fly by
And wondered if it felt
Lonesome for the many it had once
Or if it was a scout,
Holding a memory of a long-ago-known
Place to land
That others had forgotten
Or had misplaced the
Will it circle back to its own,
Flapping on the wing
In fatigued relief,
To let the rest know
It had found this night’s
The day dawned gray and there was threat of rain, but she wasn’t going to be deterred by a bit of dirty weather.
She dressed him in his powder blue slicker and packed a bag with this and that. She weighed the idea of leaving the cumbersome stroller, but at three, though the boy liked walking, he lacked endurance for it.
“We going to see Papa?” he asked as the train rolled into the station.
She hesitated. She was loath to lie to him.
“Not the one you know,” she answered finally. “Though he may become it. We shall see.”
May the words wrap
In shade and in
May a book grab
To where stories
May good tales sustain
May you find space
“What’s wrong?” I burst into her room with uncombed hair dripping from the bath and my bathrobe hanging half-opened.
She was sitting in her bed, sheets all tangled, the pillow clutched against her chest.
When she said not a word, I felt the terror rise inside me, too.
She’d had good cause for nightmares in the past, but it’s been years since any of those had woken her in such a state. Why now?
“What is it?” I crossed the distance from the door in three steps but dared not touch her lest my hands make her remember other ones, a lot less loving. “Can you tell me?”
She shuddered as if coming back from a great distance.
“I dreamt I was the moon,” she whispered. “Vast and cold and deathly airless.
“and,” her breath caught, “I dreamt that he found his way there.”
For the dVerse prosery challenge
“It is time yet?”
Prissy frowned. Alia always never had an ounce of patience. “Look around. Does it look like it is time?”
Edna glared at Prissy. That girl would not recognize patience if it sat right in front of her and introduced itself by name.
“Anyone want a snack?” Deena reached into her bag and pulled out an assortment of wrinkled potato chip bags, a crumbling granola bar in a zipped bag, and apple slices that had seen brighter days.
Alia’s look of horror was so comical that even Prissy smiled.
Count on Deena to diffuse the tension, Edna thought.
They all had their roles in every little drama life presented. Whether like players on a stage or play-pieces on a chess board, she wasn’t sure. Only that they slid into their respective places with predictability that was both comfortable and disconcerting.
Perhaps not so surprising they would do so now, when it might be the last opportunity for it. Their dynamics were about to change forever.
As soon as it was time.
A door opened at the end of the hall and they all jumped.
“Alia Marquette?” a uniformed woman appeared. “Your shuttle to Mars is about to depart.”
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