Mourning Stones Do Not Mourn Alone

I wasn’t sure whose grave I found that day. When I traveled up, into the mountains. When I stumbled upon that clearing, yellowing in the wake of fall. When I found that tombstone, carved, but unmarked. I’m not sure whose grave I found that day. Not at all.

All I knew was:

When I saw it, I was drawn.

And, as I drew closer, I could feel it more clearly.

And, as I felt it more and more, it weighed heavily on my heart.

I felt sad that day. A new mourner to stand in front of the unmarked grave. A new sadness to throw at the foot of the stone.

As I stood there, feeling it—that thick, heavy weight that came with loss, that came from poking around a hole that could never be filled—I was suddenly struck. Filled with determination.

I would be a proper mourner for this stone. For this sorrow I felt. Even if it meant mourning alone.

I was going to come back with flowers.

I was.

The very next day, in fact.

And when I came back, I was still unsure of whose grave it was. But, I was glad that I came.

Because I was not the only visitor that day. Continue reading “Mourning Stones Do Not Mourn Alone”

To Make A Champion

The night was dark and the wind was howling and the world itself was still. Silent for once. As if it were leaning in, curious. Waiting.

For me.

I would not be beat.

I refused.

Through the dark, I saw him coming with the wheel barrel. Pushing past the rocks in the hill, the bumps, the dead grass. Pushing past the graves and oaks that held hollow to these stones.

He pushed forward. Up the hill.

Him.

He was the key to all this. He didn’t know it yet, but he was. He was the one who would bring the victory. The cornerstone in my plan. The one who was going to cement my path. Take down my foes. He didn’t know it yet, but—

He was going to be my champion.

I will not be beat. Continue reading “To Make A Champion”

The Great Tiger

It happened by chance. A very unhappy, happy circumstance.

One night, when the tent was empty, and the clowns were drunk, and the crowds had all left, it happened.

I was in my cage. Not unusual. Not in the slightest bit.

At least, that was what I’d thought.

Until the wolf walked in. Continue reading “The Great Tiger”

Passion

There is something to be said for passion.

It can turn the tides, that’s for sure.

Anyone can be a pro, an expert, and still be beat.

But only if their opponent has passion.

Only if they have passion.

Passion can break rocks. Dry oceans. It can turn the sands of the desert without the help of wind. It can crack the very foundation of a thing.

Of a person.

Passion is powerful, yes.

That’s why we must be careful with it.

Continue reading “Passion”

Monstrous Tale

I was supposed to kill you.

That’s what I was brought here to do. What I was hired to do.

What I know I should do.

Not just for my sake, but for the sake of others.

You’re dangerous.

So very, extremely, dangerous.

And yet…

Time after time…

…I can’t seem to pull the trigger. Continue reading “Monstrous Tale”

Dark Waters

The first time I swam with him was in a pool. Controlled. Watched. The taste of chlorine bit at the back of my throat, stung my eyes.

Very tame. That’s what it was.

The second time I swam with him was in a river. Tubing. Lazily floating along. Hovering over the water more often than swimming in it, confusing the fish below.

Slow, steady. That was the experience as a whole.

And the third time?

The third time I swam with him?

It was nothing like those first two times.

The third time I swam with him was in the ocean. Continue reading “Dark Waters”

Thirst

There is a well within us.

And it is full.

Full of the things we love, the people we love. They make the waters we draw from. Give us life when we thirst. That water fills us.

And it fills others.

When the water is depleted—when we lose a source for our well—there is a dip. A brief period of time in which our well is not as full. We feel the loss. Draw carefully from the well, and draw only when we need to. It is not a drought, but our minds and hearts tell us it is close enough. And yet, after some time, the well is full again.

Because we get filled.

Over and over again.

Our sources do not leave us empty. Do not deplete us. They share the water with us, and we share it with them.

Because they exist, we never run dry.

But, of course, that only applies so long as they exist.

Where does the well get water if there isn’t anyone to fill it?

Where do we get water, if our wells are empty?

Where?

Where indeed. Continue reading “Thirst”

Big Bite

I was frantic.

And frantic was a word that I’d never used to describe myself before. Ever.

But, in that moment, that was what I was.

Frantic.

I was fumbling around, looking like a madman. Moving quickly, erratically. Up, under, around, about, and everything in between.

I checked everywhere.

Under the desks. In my backpack. On top of the shelf. I even took apart some lunch boxes, just to see if someone had slipped them inside. But, in the end, I came up empty.

Which is why I was frantic.

“Where the hell did I put them?” I grumbled to myself.

Obviously, I wasn’t expecting an answer. Continue reading “Big Bite”

Beast of Myself

It’s alright.

People are running away from me, screaming. Scrambling to get away. To get across the street, to get inside a building, to get away. Their panic makes cars screech and honk and then peel out, away from the sidewalk where I’m walking. Taking my casual stroll.

It’s alright.

Even if I’m lost. Even if all I want right now is some directions. Even if the sirens are closing in.

It’s alright.

It just means that they know who I am now. That they know what I’ve done. That I’m being taken seriously.

Hah.

Finally. Continue reading “Beast of Myself”

Painful Compromise

“Did you just take your pill?”

“Yeah.”

“What’d it taste like?”

“Beef this time. But, it’s a lot chalkier than the chicken. I think when I get a refill, I’ll switch back.”

“So, it’s no good?”

“I didn’t say that,” I reply, popping another pill into my mouth.

“DUDE.”

“What?”

“Don’t do that!”

“Why not?” Continue reading “Painful Compromise”