Sunday, December 14, 2014

Fiction? Fiction!

Below is something I wrote earlier this year. I thought I'd try my hand at fiction. So while what you usually read on this blog is true, below is fiction. (I hope you) enjoy:

And so they laid in the grass.

The ground was not quite warm, and the earth between the million shoots of grass was a little wet, but once their backs met the not-quite-hard, slightly bumpy surface, it was an instant bond that made them powerless to get back up, at least right at first.

And besides, they had had it. They had done enough thinking and problem solving for one day. “Enough already!” they thought, and squished their shoulder blades around to get better acquainted with the ground, not minding that their t-shirts got wetter as they did so. Because as they lay there, they remembered how healing it can be to just lie on the earth and look at the sky. And sometimes it can be the best place to start when you’re trying to solve a problem and just don’t know where to go next.

Brady looked at a cloud and thought to himself that it looked like a rabbit – a boy rabbit, with stiff tufts of hair around his ears and buck teeth that made him look at once mischievous and impossibly charming. He laughed to himself, but only inside, a laugh that didn’t make it to the surface, causing no ripples of movement to move the folds in his t-shirt nor a sound from his mouth. He didn’t tell Jack, either, about the funny image he was picturing, because he just didn’t feel like expending the energy. He wasn’t cranky about it, but rather the longer he laid in the grass the more victim he became to its overpowering influence to make him relax. It was like gravity was literally pushing down on him, rather than just causing his body to fall downward.

This was the best he had felt in weeks, and it only took three seconds to get there.

How we forget to lie in the grass!

Jack let out a grumbly sigh, that both let out his aggravation toward spending half the day fighting their conundrum and expressed the same relief Brady was feeling at having met the grass.

Brady closed his eyes and took three rattly, relieved breaths, feeling safe, quiet, not rushed. Of course the thoughts were still spinning in his head, but when he opened his eyes again and looked at the clouds moving at their own pace he began to transfer the speed in his own head to the sky. “You do the moving for a while,” he thought, talking to the clouds.

He closed his eyes again, softly, and for several minutes would open them faintly, then his lids would close again, as if they couldn’t make up their mind what to do.

At one point the boys happened to let their heads fall to the side so that they caught a glimpse of each other, and they both smiled weakly; weakly but satisfied.

Finally. Finally, they'd stopped. Perhaps for but a moment, but at least for right now the world didn’t have its grip on us with its grimy, manipulative little hands, taking every moment and pointing us toward distraction, exhausting ambition, more more more. For now the world was holding them from a different angle, in the crook of its elbow, like babies. The boys were happy to be babies, babies who care only about food and milk, diaper changes and Mama being near.

And while Jack and Brady were teenagers, constantly shouldering the pressure to be manly, responsible, cool, tall, acne-free, they were in fact part baby, as all boys, all people, are. For the moment, they sank into their status as it was when they entered the world, free once again and not being watched, sized-up, not good enough. Mother Earth held them in her elbow thinking they were perfect, and they were, just as they were.

Short, pimpled, not always happy – all of it. 

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