This isn’t what I had planned for you, dear readers. I was on the up and up. I wasn’t quite rainbows in the springtime but I was ready to find beauty in the broken down and forgotten. November blew by me in blurred shapes and outlines, the view from a high speed train. I was traveling so fast that I barely acknowledged the crash until I was burning in twisted metal and darkness. It’s scary to find yourself pinned under a great weight unsure or unwilling to struggle against it until help comes. It’s scarier still to realize the cause of the crash, nothing big, no lumbering elephant in the way like you might expect, but one small tarnished penny lodged in the track. Just one penny and I am derailed. That’s the sad truth of the matter.
Still, I am one of the lucky. I fall and I break and I lie waiting and help always comes. Sometimes it’s the well-timed arrival of parents: A mother who will stroke your head and calm your gulping sobs. A step-father who will catch you off guard with a joke when the last thing you want is to laugh but you laugh and the laughing dislodges the rocks in your chest. The laughing triggers an avalanche and when the rubble quiets and the dust settles there is a new view.
There is a new view on the top of the mountain when you look out beyond the train cars scattered in blackened ruins. When you look to the right of the trauma, to the left of the memories, when you look ahead to the horizon. The land stretching on and on until it finds the sky. There they intertwine fingers and palm to palm the heat blooms in bouquets of pinks and oranges. If you’re lucky, the way I’m lucky, when your tears dry and you look again to the sky it won’t be empty. The clouds will arrange themselves into shapes: a bird, a heart, a man. A man and maybe a cowboy hat pulled down low over his eyes.
Maybe. If you’re lucky.