The sun pressed against the distant horizon in a passionate goodnight kiss. The sky leaned in close and then flushed an orange that deepened to purple, in embarrassment, as it was caught snooping. Turning its back on the embrace, the sky darkened to black as the sun released its hold on the world and disappeared. The ground quickly chilled from loneliness. It missed the sun’s love.
From her perch high in the mountains she saw out the day’s end, just has she had for the previous week, and she wept. The fat tears rolled over the ridges of her cheek and dripped from the valley of her chin. She let them fall unimpeded. After the second day she hardly noticed them anyway and the darkness swallowed them whether she tried to stop them or not. She shivered as the cold seeped up from the ground to latch onto her feet.
Infinite moments passed before the trillion eyes opened, slowly, at first, in ones and twos that then cascaded into a landslide of twinkling curiosity, to spy unashamed on the earth below. The stars laughed and smiled at the antics of the people below, who were ignorant of the truths of life despite the emphasis they placed on the lives they lead. The ground, grown cranky in the absence of its love, was less amused while it forcefully suffered the abuse of their pride. It bore the burden of their trespassing in the day as well, but did so more amicably under the watchful gaze of the sun.
Cradled between a sturdy limb and the strong trunk of the tallest tree, she sensed the ground’s agony and she wept. She had broken free of her ice shackles to climb where she might catch one last glimpse of the day, but she had been too slow and had missed all but the gathering turmoil. It was not her duty to judge the pain dealt and received, that responsibility was another’s, but she couldn’t help the roll of emotions that thundered through her as it crashed up from the ground. It was beauty and pain in equal measure, and more than she could withstand stoically.
The night reached for her and she reached back, giving herself to the air in a leap of trust and longing. She felt the night carefully envelop her and she closed her eyes to the meandering shadows of the world. She felt loss. She felt free. She felt the chill of a thousand supernovae and the burning fire of the only love she had ever known to be true. The sky took her in and urged her to set aside her pain and weariness, but asked for everything else as well. She was tempted, and she wept.
Just as she had every night before, she opened her eyes and banished her impatience with a scream that quieted the creaking of the earth. Just like the ground waited for the return of its love, she too could wait. The eternal nothingness howled in rage at having nearly claimed her, and, letting her call fade from her lips, she sighed in relief. Her grief was great, but it was not so great she would relinquish beauty and inspiration and love just to be rid of it. Sunrise whispered its promise from the other side of the world and her heart swelled with hope.
And, she wept.