Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Solitary Journey

"Sleeps well with others" proclaims her black
Tee with the chlorine stain on the right side of the hem.
No, she doesn't, not really. She is bossy, opinionated,
wounded. Struggles to heal the injury by herself, the only one, (his kindess)
who truly understood in a visceral sense, the lavender shadows that lap
none too gently at her irritated skin, a scourge
of sorts that drives her onward, gone but for a photo  on her table.

She learns alone. In her own way. Many chances
lost, she understands while listening for the ultrasonic
song of her absent dog's grief, that nobody sees
a broken heart. It can't be sampled to study beneath
microscope, nor dissected. No, the only solution is reunion. Bring
the pack together again, and sure, enough the little family gathers around her
bare feet in their tiny
kitchen where she teaches herself to cook her husband's recipes
by herself. Complete. Cat, loafed on an ottoman, young dog gazes up,
the elder dog,  recently-abandoned, three days until he raised his eyes in trust to hers.
This shames her, but she accepts it.

It has taken her a lifetime to understand to leave
none  behind on the battlefield. That she, too, can leave
battles, strike out across the plains into the deeper woods
with her pack, her posse, until they sleep deeply camouflaged
by layers of warming leaves shed early, perhaps just
for this purpose. To protect the family as leaky
rowboats, creaky oars hung loose, beach waves of nightmare
behind her fluttering eyelids. A dog whimpers in a dream.
Cat extends her claws, sighs. They follow her, guard her
through  danger.

Rachael Z. Ikins

Artwork for sale at http://rachaelikins.com/artwork.htm
Publications, books for sale at http://rachaelikins.com/publications.htm
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Twitter: @justaskrache

"Dwell in possibility and you will find magic!"

1 comment:

  1. Hi,
    I like your flash fiction. It is very good. You have put the words so togather that it made me think about what you were writing and I could build pictures in my mind.