Cassandra watched the man in the deli carve the meat and then put aside one slice. She was curious. The slice looked good, from the middle of the joint. So she asked why it was separated from what her grandmother bought. The man replied, "We are told to throw it away. I'd rather not though. Sometimes I ask customers if they want it for free and they refuse." After a small pause, she asked what was wrong with the first slice. "Nothing!" he replied, "It's good! It could be slightly drier but still very good!"
Its fiery wings glided softly past me, bring warmth into my body. It flew once, twice around me, finally stopping to rest on my shoulders. Its body is like blazing fire, burning brightly even through impenetrable darkness. A fire is the light in the dark, while the phoenix is the light of my world.
Order is born of cooperative, kind and compassionate chaos; it develops within an emotional ecosystem who is conscious that their energy input is love. Chaos and fear becomes harm and disorder, but fear imposed order soon brings the same result. It is the nuance of empathy that makes freedom function, the love that brings cooperation that is lacking in coercion; for coercion and freedom are incompatible. We have proven in neurology that it is love that brings our brains and physiology into health, the sort of health that makes us a socially complex species at peace with one another and our environment. So, when we hone in on love as our answer, victory is simply a matter of time.
We build mostly from a special kind of fortified glass, after all, why chop down a forest when you can harvest the desert? Those waves of golden sand became our greatest building material, and then, when we'd taken the dunes from the land we resowed forests upon them or used the area for aquaponic agriculture. It gave the rest of the planet a chance to breathe and recover... literally.
I remember the country, the country as it was, the wind dancing with the first autumn leaves, painted in all kinds of beautiful reds and oranges. I remember the vibrant world, the morning light peeking through my window, the world unfolding in vivid colours, truly alive.
The birds flew through that ever developing canvas of the dawn, as if their wings were fine quills, drawing such buoyant hues. Those wings in that sky became the colours of my dreams and whenever I needed a memory to lift me off the ground, they were there.
I try so damn hard for you to love me as much as you love yourself, but finally I've realized that I don't love you. I just love the idea of you and the thought of something good in a sea of something terrible. I love you so much, no, the idea of you, that I shove everything wrong with me, all my problems and flaws, everything I carry, deep in my pockets, just to be enough, and hope that I am good, and maybe you are good too. But I have to remind myself that's just a fantasy. Then I'm finally free, because I know that nothing will never be enough for you, under everything you are sad, and you cannot see anything that isn't you. You're selfish that way and I no longer blame myself for every time I wasn't good enough for you; I wasn't perfect enough, happy enough, every time I didn't praise you, or love you like stars love the moon. Now I am not yours anymore, you have lost me and, I swear, being lost has never felt so good.
My brain stutters for a moment and my eyes take in more light than I expected, every part of me goes on pause while my thoughts catch up. After a wash of cold I step from the shadows, feeling a new warmth to the day. I place one hand on Caleb's shoulder, "It'll be okay, it will."
Let's have a "hero corp," a body of socially and environmentally minded folks that are paid a comfortable living wage for fifteen hours service per week with a bonus for education or training that is additional. They can work in health, education, environment, community service (including the arts, festivals and care of the elderly and disabled), relieving the workloads of overstressed caring staff. Then, when possible, those overburdened staff can be paid their regular full time wage for less hours until their hours match the "hero corp" workers. It would be a significant step up from Universal Basic Income because it gets people out of the house, interacting with others and learning new skills. For the disabled or elderly who want to join in we can find ways to help them get involved rather than leaving them out, enabling them to do whatever tasks they can contribute and enjoy. Everyone has a skill they can offer and whatever they can do is good enough for the rest of us... we should include them with thanks and with joy. When we run our society this way, there will be enough love nurture and care for everyone. It is a stepping stone into a fabulous future that is thriving and ecologically sound.
This would boost the health of workers in brain and body. It is vital that we do welcome them as heroes for the system to work and give them the same respect as any other worker in our vital services. The "Hero Corp" workers can choose whatever good cause they wish to support, to join an existing service/team or start a new one. There's a lot of people out there from all walks of life that want to improve our communities and environment, let's give them the help they need to help us all. In time we would expect to see happier communities with greater health, greater educational outcomes and greater law & order. In essence, we could expect to see a recovery of society and nature. Plus it is cheaper to solve poverty than not to, so this is the more fiscally sound option.
We are in a war where you offensive and wounding words storm through me, piercing my body like being struck with a sword a thousand times. Your every deed and action feels like an attempt of ambush to end me forever. My tears and my cries are my shield against your savagery and barbarity but still I know that around you I am defenceless and always will be defenceless. You have already attained victory in this one sided war but still your hunger and thirst for blood and torture is insatiable. And that's why this is goodbye forever. I deserve someone warm and affectionate, one who uses words kindly.
A widowed wife. A mother of two. Living in a country of chaos. She lives in a scattered pile of concrete held together by fractured planks of wood. Trying to survive in a country that wants everyone dead. Seeking refuge in any broken, run-down house that is still standing. Living every moment of her life in constant fear of death for herself and her children.
Streaming tears cleansed her red cheeks. Few droplets remained, forgetting their way as the path was swept from beneath them, consequently blurring the Amelia's vision with waves of sadness only the broken encounter. The salty release calmly flowed into her mouth so that she could taste her own sorrow.
Bitter. Unforgiving. Pain.
Limp extremities creaked and cracked under the pressure of her body. Amelia's lifeless corpse navigated the streets with grotesque difficulty as she neared her home. She cried out for help, just for a sign someone was there for her, but the whimper was slowly lost in the thinning air.
Then she started to remember. Her smile. Her voice. Memories flooding back into her head. The mysterious girl that exited her life so abruptly leaving her so vulnerable and lonely. The beautiful girl that took her heart...
So Amelia was left reminiscing and indulging in her past; ignoring her unverified future.