Tell me a story, where the hero is nothing more than normal. The villains are only a point of view. A story at which I laugh and cry, A story that shows a plight and gives hope but not necessarily in that order. Tell me a story which I have heard, but will never know the ending. A story, yes a story, the likes of which cannot be written, nor spoken nor watched but excites all the senses. Allow the complexity to overwhelm the senses and its absence feel like famine. Tell a story in which I am lost but know the way. Can you tell such a tale? Or will it be like the rest and allow me to relive memories at best?
There sat Balthazar the brave
Looked out from humble cave
Brave and bold he pondered
If dragon lord was in or wandered
Deep inside treasure did reside
Over which Scythe the Blue did abide
Balthazar was at the ready
He wished Tavish was so steady
Sword and shield he headed in
Tavish followed with less a din
Spear and torch to light the way
From Balthazar he wouldn’t stray
Tunnel’s labyrinth did delay
Their progress to dragon’s slay
When light did quake and quiver
Both brave and not did give shiver
Was dragon snort that gave a start
And then did race the heart
In flash of light that followed
Scythe fought brown dragon in the hollow
With ancient sword in wield
Balthazar let pain upyield
Brown dragon screeched in surprise
Moments before his demise
It was now Scythe and knight
Over the spoils to now fight
Scythe lowered head in truce
No need the other to reduce
The brave took a small chest
Then Tavish and he left the nest
Badger, rabbit, and mouse
Set out to guard the house
Mouse with quiver and bow
Rabbit with sword in tow
Badger with pole arm in hand
Together a merry band
Turns they took watching the sky
On watch for covey on high
Avian tormentors had plots
To steal fruit and seed from lots
The crafty birds dove from flight
Only to climb back from hopeless plight
Wan weasel wander wistfully where whims’ want wishful wonder waiting where weasels whisk. Weasels wantonly wail woefully when white whale wants wan weasel’s wares. Wan weasel weighs whale’s wants while white whale wrangles weasel’s wares. Wan weasel won’t wage war with white whale. White whale won wan weasel’s wares.
Lithe llama leads lackadaisical little lamb. Lucky Labrador lets lamb lead llama. Lenticular lush lands lure lamb. Little lamb leaves llama’s light lead. Leadless lamb lunches lustfully. Llama lacks leal lackey. Longanimous Labrador leers longingly. Lessons learned:
1. Let Labrador lead lost lambs.
2. Llamas lack leadership.
Quart quaffing quintuplets question quick quilting Qatar quadruplets queue. Quincy questions Quinn. Quarterback Quinten quizzes queasy Quade. Quigley queries Queen Quinlan quilting quality quartz. Quinta quits quirky Quintin quandary. Quela quietly quests quoting quail quacks.
The clouds rolled in that day. It was not unforeseen by anyone who had paid attention to the winds. The jackal sat looking over the valleys and plains before him and thought about how long it would be till the rain hit. His mate had gone out hunting to for a snack and had said she would be back soon.
The gentle rumble of thunder in the distance made him worry slightly. She never liked the rain, and thunder made her want to hide in the den even more so. He paced around the hill top a little more, looking to see if he could catch sight of her return across the field. He never liked it when she was gone this long. It made him worry and debate what may beholding her up. As always, he would regret not tagging along, tired as he may have been when she left.
He could now see the gentle rains in the distance as the grass changed shades as it bowed and rode from the drops. It was approaching at a decent rate. It would only be a matter of minutes till it was here. He paced around again surveying the horizon in each direction for the sign of her approach. His nose twitched as he sniffed her familiar scent in the wind.
It was too late, she jumped up and pushed him on his back. He braced for the second assault as three pups jumped up at him from the other sides, each nipping playfully at his ears and arm. He rolled under the assault for a quick moment before knocking the four of them off. He took a quick moment straighten up his fur with a few licks. He nuzzled at the pups to move them along toward their den.
The five jackals’ ears perked up as the sound of the rain now reached them. The quickened their stride to the den in hopes of staying dry. The two watched as the pups scampered to get inside, both watching for any things spying on them. Confident they would get a good rest, the mother went in next followed by the father who was happy to have his family back.
She stares out at the savanna, knowing that they play regardless of who may be watching. This is their home and she is but a visitor. Two of them greet each other with gentle head butting that would knock her to the ground. One of them flashes its open mouth, a quick yawn or a warning of the deadliness hidden under her beauty.
Yet she watches in reverie, enthralled with the anticipation of what they will do next as yet another joins the group and shares in the greetings. If not for the apparent size difference, she would think them the same as her ones back home that wait for her return. Her mind wonders to that of sitting in a chair on her computer as one of her cats comes up to her and nuzzles her with affection and want of attention. The joy and comfort she is feeling is amplified by her lover’s hand upon her back. He is there watching in fascination with her too.
The gentle caress of his hand brings to mind his own pet name for her, his snow leopard. Her thoughts dwell on all the attributes it has and she feels like she lacks. It is a creature of great power and beauty; never to be tamed. Questions enter her mind as she wonders if he sees the same things in her that she sees in it. She steels a quick glance and recalls the confidence he has in her, greater than her own sometimes. She feeds on those compliments, repeating them quietly to herself and still questions where he gets such ideas.
The lions in the field are now resting gazing pleasantly across the field now. The cats here are much like the ones at home. As they get sleepy you feel as if they beckon you to sleep with them. Or is it that they leach your energy to recharge themselves. The feeling is hard to say at this moment. For in the comfort of her family she understands why they are comfortable. In this moment she feels as though she empathizes most with the animals in the field more than many she knows back home.
Kiwi looked up from the water he had been drinking. Snow Leopard was now back and he could continue their conversation. “I do not think it all that bad here in this place. Back home the number of threats have never been worse.”
“I agree with the number of threats increasing,” Snow Leopard replied. “However I need more space to feel at home then what I have been provided with. Further, why could they not put themselves here and let me stay behind. They can survive in a single room with all their technology. I need the space, the thrill of the hunt.”
“Also a good point,” Kiwi responded. “Yet, my home is not as nice as it once was. They brought much with them to the islands. I fear that I would not be safe outside this place. And, I would like to see the sun without shade again, or go beyond a wall if the mood struck me. Yes it may mean uncertainty to my existence, but at least it would be excitement.”
“I would never choose such a cramped house.” growled Snow Leopard. “I want my mountains back. I want my forest, my childhood home, back under my feet. I want to feel real land and not the concrete and predictable landscape. Though I do not feel the pangs hunger encouraging me day to day, I struggle to find reason to get out from the corner I sleep in. I do not wish to entertain those that stare wide eyed at my existence. They say my brethren number less by the day, and yet they do not let us go down with a fight. Some day we will all be gone and I wish to have the smell of a known forest around me and the taste of a fresh kill in my teeth be my fleeting thoughts. I do not like the sound of a pipe leaking or the aroma of prey never to be caught.”
“Young cat,” it was the voice of Alpaca, “You need not waste your breath wishing for your former glory, your lost freedom, or happiness outside of here. You do not have children patting you each day, and should thank that fortune.”
“I would only bite the little hands,” Snow leopard retorted.
“Exactly why they do not. You do not fare any worse or better than those who were domesticated. We are kept and sheered for our hair. You will hear how we must be kept safe from the elements, but as those before us did, I assure you we are quite capable of handling the extremes of a wild life. I was a guard for sheep, yes sheep, before being sent here. Now I am to play nice and let them caress me or let them cut small locks of my hair.”
“But that means you too have felt the freedom of the wilds. You are not native to such enclosures.”
“You are correct and yet I am safe from you here. I miss my herd and the comfort of the group. Yet I am resigned to here being my resting spot. Kiwi is a good friend to have as he will listen, but I warn you to not pine for things outside your grasp. If you are trouble or you attack them, they will not hesitate putting you down.”
“Your words of wisdom are to endure and suffer?” snapped the cat. “I do not lie down, there is no pride in that. I cannot cower at their beck and call. I cannot sit so politely with their brood. They stare lie they hunt me, but I am already caught.”
“I cannot offer you any other advice than that. Come to terms with the life you will now live.”
“There is nothing to come to terms with,” Kiwi spoke up. “It is a harsh life hear or out there. But in the freedom beyond these walls, we both had some say in what would happen. We could each find a mate, asses the risks we wanted to take, eat what and when we felt like it. Now it is regimented, I do not get to taste the sweetest of grub anymore. Snow Leopard can only eat whichever rabbit they choose to feed him.”
“I agree much of our individuality is lost here.” Alpaca responded, “You still have choices to eat or not eat. You can be active when the crowd are around or not. You can lament what is not and how it should be. But what will you do when done with that? Outside your cage would you lament that the prey is not as easy to catch as yesterday?”
“You suggesting I memorize my cage, make routine of the walls and the comings and goings of the humans?” Snow Leopard curled in a corner. “This is not what mother prepared me for.” she mumbled as she started to doze off. “This is not what I want to achieve. This is not all I am capable of.”
There was a sound outside. I knew not what it was. I was quite content with what I had and felt no need to investigate. So there I sat with indifference to that which had now made its self present. Life went on and this new sound slowly piqued my curiosity because of its unyielding nature. It was neither unpleasant nor annoying but the mere fact that it continued required some sort of investigation.
Out I went to explore that which I had no idea was or, prior to a short while before, had even cared about. The sound was something that seemed to call out for me to investigate, yet I think that had I not I would have been comfortable with its seemingly ever-presence. There is no doubt that it felt like it should continue to be and therefore questioned myself as to how sure I was that it nay did exist prior to its detection.
Try as I might I could not recall any such similar noise occurring prior to a short bit back. The sound at this point was starting to fade into the tapestry that makes up everyday life. Indeed I was losing track of its origin because of the harmony it maintained. Like the sound of a car running or music in the background it had been a short while and yet already the noise was incorporated into my daily existence.
As time went on I could tell that the noise sometimes was not there and when it was not I missed it as though it was a favorite item. Indeed it had become as natural as the desire to have a glass of water when thirsty or to eat when hungry. The source of it though unknown, the sound never seemed gone long and as a result I became accustomed to its short absences. Time progressed and I came to fall into a coexistence with its habits. Though originally sad by its absence, the brief time without the noise made me enjoy its presence more so.
It was then I realized the sound never did disappear entirely and that it more so just faded out and became less dominant to the rest of the world. It was as if it had the modesty to realize that the rest of the world may have as much importance as the sound itself and then when it may be completely gone it would renew its endeavor to be recognized if even only for a moment.
This existence went on for awhile and then as if something in the universe had shifted slightly I knew the sound would soon be gone. Perhaps it was just a feeling or maybe I had finally realized the true nature of the sound. Maybe the sound itself had indicated the course it was to soon follow and passed this information along with its existence. Regardless, something that I had gone most my life without and had but a short encounter with was about to leave. I didn’t want it to, I had grown accustom to its influence on the melody of daily life. The noise was but a blip on the larger scale of life gone by and life to come. However sometimes something fleeting can have a larger impact than that which is around us longer.
I felt like I had wasted all the time I should have spent listening to this sound. Rather than memorizing it I had taken for granted, I had let its presence be squandered. I felt like such a fool for not having done anything more than listen to it. But then I reflected. I had done what I could do to pursue it, I had seen all that there was for me to see. The reality was I had taken as much advantage of the situation as I could. I had incorporated the sound into everything it fit into. I had appreciated it in every way possible. The truth was I had done everything but waste it.
Then it was gone. It was all over and I felt left with nothing despite the fact of what I had. I knew the sound finally and its origin. I knew what it had done and how it had done so. I had enjoyed it and let it be. I missed it, I mourned it, I searched for it, I chased it, and then I let it go. It was not mine, but someone else’s now to follow. I was left quiet, back to what had been.