Monday, December 29, 2008

Between Storms

The sky was still damp with darkness while birds awoke and began their search for one another. It is as if they have a language that alerts them to food or prey. She was numb with fear only able to comprehend her breathing as a necessary task for survival. Movement was difficult - her legs heavy - her arms weak - her eyes blurred with tears and blindness. The birds continued to emerge from their night time hiding places and provided a distraction of sorts. Nothing and everything mattered. Awareness was agonizing, as much as the voids were frightening. How long could she stay in the cold - how could she return to reality and go back inside? This was a place between here and there - a respite, self made, self indulged, and quiet, in between the challenge of here and there. Here is better, definitely better. There it all waits.

Her layers of clothing - red plaid flannel pajamas, his old bulky black robe, a scarf her sister had made of purple and shades of blue and green and gray wool socks and worn sneakers offered minimal warmth against the force of Winter. She fumbled for a lighter in the pocket of his robe, ah! She lit up - inhaled deeply and watched as she exhaled a cloud of white smoke mixing with the frozen fog that surrounded her. She thought - I could do this all day. Yes, this I can do.

The sun struggled to be noticed. The clouds were thick with snow and cold waiting to burst - spurting every now and then to warn of what was to come. It would be fierce and passionate, mysterious and ominous, a force that makes one tuck their chin in to their chest and turn away from the impact. A phenomenon of nature that she doesn't want to miss - a storm to endure - a stance of bravery and courage against the elements, a death-defying act.

The sun insisted on turning darkness to light despite it being hidden. She felt more vulnerable in the light making it more difficult to stay here, avoiding there. As light became more blinding and the spurting clouds became more fierce - the wind howled and her long hair was tossed about she was being pulled inside out of one storm and drawn into the storm that waited. Each was powerful, passionate, required bravery and courage and strength to endure, to face, to go through. She remained still for a time between here and there, this storm and that unable to move. She thought of just walking off into the now swirling, blinding snow, invisible, never to be found. She pondered how it would be to freeze to death - would sleep come first before it hurt too much? Her inability to answer that made walking into the storm too scary. But wait, walking in to the other storm waiting inside was worse. Her hands trembled, her teeth chattered, her heart pounded, breathing was difficult, her toes were numb - she was aware. "NO NO NO" she screamed - scaring every last bird back into the woods.

She fumbled once again for his lighter, deep in the pocket of his warm, bulky black robe. She lit up - inhaled deeply. As she exhaled the white cloud of smoke was tossed in to the storm-lost in snow and ice and wind - she followed.



Kartz said...

C'est la vie... Loved the imagery!

A very happy and prosperous New Year to you and yours...


Gail said...

Thanks Kartz and a healthy-happy and peaceful 2009 to you and all of yours.
love gail

PENolan said...

Enjoy the snow storms. I'll be thinking of you


To Dear Ms Gail




Hi! I'm Grace said...

Hi Gail, I enjoyed reading your post.
Have a happy new year. :)

Gail said...

Hi Grace -

Thanks for stopping by. I am glad you enjoyed my writing. Please stop by whenever you can.


Gail said...

Hi Naval-

"Thank You" for the beautiful New Year's card.

Love Gail