The future rests not on the authority of the empowered, but upon the forgiveness of the abused and enslaved. It is the capacity of their hearts to embrace those who wielded power and accept the free help they rightly offer to heal and move forwards that is the salvation of all.
The books wait to speak their words, their ink on papery leaves that will always stay even though centuries may pass. They invite a conversation with the thoughts, one unspoken and kind - for one can always walk away from a book if one chooses, and return when ready. In a way, they are the legacy their author's thoughts, preserving ideas that would otherwise be as fleeting as the song of a bird.
Frost grew over the windows even as the duvet kept me warm. I watched the ice-crystals grow for a while, allowing my brain to be empty, content to exist and be. The morning would bring the beauty of the ice for sure, that crunch under boot and the bold greeting cold air brings. Yet between now and watching my breaths rise as new white-puffed clouds there will be a very cold night. The kind that only stops at the doors of the well-made houses.
A royal crown sits upon his head like a boat stuck on a stream in one place. It's like it's entangled in the roots of his hair, like it's apart of him. In the shower, at work, in front of everyone. It's going to be there for ever and ever. But who cares? I like it that way.
My bicycle covers the miles and though I pedal, it feels so automatic. My legs remain in motion as my thoughts stay in the moment, admiring each blossom and bird. These wheels have touched so much of Earth and always are so keen for more... this iron horse and me, we explore as if it were a migratory calling.
There was a steadiness to her, as if all the storms in the world were a whispering breeze if she was there. She was kind and clever, perhaps that's what drew people to her. It was as if she knew she was born to be a queen of the earth, one who helped others, using her brain to fix whatever needed fixing. There was nothing "princess" about her though, just a fierce independence and a motherliness too... and she was that way from girlhood, confident with the air of a warrior. I loved her, we all did.
The raven-haired boy is in front of me. We look and stare and said nothing as usual. I cannot help but smile to myself. No words come out from our mouths, not even a smile or a hint of gesture. But one look already shares it all. He is the first one to look away, averting his eyes from mines, and walks pass me, our shoulders hardly brush. I turn around and watch his tall, lean figure fading. He was right here within my grasp when I had him. He seems so distant and vague now, like a shattered dream.
Maybe, in an alternative universe, it was us who were fated.
Maybe, someday, we’d meet again in a different way.
Someday, when we don’t belong to anyone else but to each other, but my heart is always within him in the first place.
Because that look on that raven-haired boy’s face when he smiled was, indeed, priceless.
She awoke Christmas morning to the sound of her son laughing in his bedroom and her heart sank right through her skin onto the floorboards she had slept on. She didn't need to wake, the night had come and gone without unconsciousness for even a moment. In seconds she was down the stairs and pulling on her boots. He was calling her from the stairs now, "Mommy, has Santa been?" She didn't turn around just in case she could see him, instead she embraced the frigid air without even a jacket and got in her frosted car. She had to get to the cemetery, take him his stocking and blow him his Christmas kiss. Perhaps then he would settle into her memories for another year, content to be silent, invisible. By the time she was at the small marble tombstone she had no memory of how she'd got there or where she'd parked the car. As her eyes settled on the text her chest constricted, breathing became hard as she placed the red velvet on the icy grass. With shaking hand she blew a salty kiss...
The people of Iowa squinted up at the sky, trying to catch a glimpse of color. A cloud-clearing was scheduled for today, to allow the crops to grow without the glare of artificial sunlight and to meet the United Nation’s decree that sunshine was a universal human right. They strained, watching with burning eyes for the plane that would plant the seeds for pulling the thick blanket of smog away from the sky over the cornfields.
“Why, I haven’t seen the sky since I was a young man.” Grandpappy said, shielding his eyes with his hand as a helicopter flew overhead. “Do you know what color it is, Simon?”
“Gray.” I replied, breathing excitedly though my triple-filter. It made a whooshing noise.
“No, no.” he said, shaking his head. “Behind the clouds. Did you ever learn?” He looked upwards, his gray-gilled filter tight against his nose. The cloud-pushers were arriving now, and I shivered with anticipation.
“America accepts the current reality to forge a brighter future.” I recited. “There isn’t any use in trying to learn about the past when we know that we can never have it back.”
“Where did you learn that?” The planes flew in a spiral, now. They shot something into the clouds. A cool wind blew through the cornfields, and I shrugged in response.
“The news, maybe.” Grandpappy went silent for a moment, then turned to me.
“The color was known as ‘blue’.” he said. “We don’t talk about it any more, but that’s what it was.”
“Bloo.” I repeated after him, the sound-shape foreign in my mouth.
“Remember what it looks like, Simon.” he said. “A memory is the one thing they can’t take from you.” The planes spiraled outwards and a hole began to open, shining light downwards onto the vast, dusty fields.
“Will I know it when I see it?” I asked, unsure of what was to come.
“Don’t worry.” he said, and I could see the faint twitches of a smile under his dust mask. “You will.”
"When the world needs us to fight the good fight, no matter the odds, we fight together. And we will always be alright, you and I, because will we always have each other." His voice had soothed my ears that day, resonating so deeply with everything that I am. I can still hear his words echoing in my head, the beautiful lyrics that were his song.
Tiny fingers curl around my pinky. I watch the newborn peer through brand new eyes at what must be such a strange world after life in the womb. Her legs kick in a tiny jagged motion, looking for that resistance they are used to I guess, but finding nothing but air. I wonder if that's unsettling or a relief, it must have been pretty cramped in there. When she stretches her hands barely rise above her head and I think of how strange we'd all look if we kept those body proportions as we grew. I know I can pick her up if I want to, she's my sister, but I'm scared to break her. She's such a doll. Then she begins to fret and cry, everyone tells me how annoying that's going to be, but it's so cute I almost cry. This is a new person, and I'm already filling up with love for her