Saturday, April 27, 2013


She found herself standing on top of a great cliff, staring down at the crashing waves of the ocean.  It would probably take fifteen seconds to hit the water if she jumped.  The wind was blowing cold, biting bullets of sleet through her skirt and jacket.  She wrapped her arms tightly around herself, grateful for the moisture because even she could pretend there weren't tears streaming down her face. Their voices kept running through her head.  They got louder as the wind picked up from the east.  Her thoughts were adamant at being more forceful than nature itself.  She tried to listen to the wind, the waves, and the rain.  She shook her head violently and looked up and when she did she saw a sparrow caught in the gale.  It was beating its tiny wings furiously to regain control against the storm.  It tumbled up through the air like a boomerang and would suddenly drop ten feet only to be lifted up again and blown in a spiral to the right.  Suddenly, it stopped beating its wings and plummeted down towards the water.  The wind won the battle and the small creature did not have the energy to fight anymore.  The girl gasped as she saw it fall into the ocean, it barely made a ripple and unless someone had been watching it fall, no one would have ever know anything entered the water.  She was grateful to have a distraction from her own thoughts for the briefest of moments.  But they always returned.  She knew why the sparrow had stopped fighting.  Everything around it was so strong, so unrelenting that the only choice left was to fall.  The girl kicked the pebbles in front of her and watched them roll off the cliff.  The wind was getting stronger, she could feel her body pushed forward and to the side with its angry blows.  Hers was the path of the sparrow.  She tried to convince herself that no one would miss it and the world would remain unchanged by the disappearance of one, tiny sparrow.  That reality caused the girl to loosen her muscles, give in to the wind and fall, just as the bird had done.  The girl thought just before hitting the water that she had been wrong, it was closer to twenty seconds.

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