soft hollow: july

soft hollow: july

A Chapter by An owl on the moon
"

Chapter 7 from my book: "An owl on the moon..."

"

Pulsing thunder and fire fill the sky.

Scarlet and ivory flames flood the blackness

and shower sparks of

emerald,

golden, and

sapphire.

 

     The drums beat in rhythm as this fire falls.  With loud boasts, the fire shines as gold, and cascades beyond our sight, like an angel fallen from heaven.  This freedom falls from the sky with only echoes of original intent, for how can souls in shackles sleep free?  A taste of charcoal fire permeates the deep air.  My breath wrestles the wind in the wet heat, and I turn to see a wounded soldier proudly displaying two sparkling medals of valor that replaced his legs; the cost of honor.

     Up in her room, Lady Ember lies upon her bed, pale and fragile. Even in her mortality there rests a graying grace.  Her ancient eyes once awaited the walls of the Idler Inn as it was birthed so many seasons past.  Now its’ eyes await her dying dust with penetrating patience.  Setting aside her tray of food, I turn to exit as she gasps for another breath.  Frosted feather dust lines the cracked window pane, and I hear her feeble voice. “When does life become obsolete?”  I stand in subtle silence, then slowly turn toward her aging frame.

     “Young man,” she coughs.  I gaze into her clouded gray eyes, nearly blind.

     “Do you need something, Ma’am?  Something to drink?”  I ask.  With this she claws at the sheets to support herself.

     “What I need, young man, you cannot give me.  It is a gift that slips from me even now.”

     “A gift?”  My eyes rove and roam her chamber. She finally lifts herself to speak.

 

“Life is a gift

that no one can earn.

Though wasted or treasured

the proud humbly learn,

that nothing can halt

our future demise;

the fear of the Lord

will open our eyes.”

 

     At her words I step forward and speak. 

 

“My brother was born with a dream;

a song to move his feet.

And I was given a broom,

to clean where he strides the street.

Will Providence ever prevail

to turn the tide of the scale?”

 

     She rises as if renewed by a quickening daydream, and now speaks.  “Listen...Do you hear the spider weaving her webs?  Can you feel the joy of the Lark, or smell the fragrance of drifting pollen, or view the cresting waters on every earthly shore?  These things endure every day as we wander.  Even now their sounds and scents fill the earth.  Every moment...” she coughs and pauses to take a breath.  “Every moment of an ordinary day is full of wonderment, for the common is only a cloaked disguise of the divine.”  She lays back in a temporary taste of torment, then continues as her body shakes.

     “We live as emotional transients in a world of isolation.  Oh, if I could only borrow back so many wasted moments, but only the arrogant have no regrets; so much is paid for with borrowed time.

 

The infant road,

the child’s path,

in the rising tide of the day,

is the aged road

the dying path,

in the dusk where mortals play.”

 

     Lady Ember stops, then rises painfully and deliberately.  “I hope you have listened well to the learning words of a dying lady.”

     I step toward her feeble frame with anxious anger.  “May I say with no disrespect that I am my own tutor and mentor.  I am my own critic and judge.  I’ll weigh your words on my spirit’s scales.”

     “Beware that you don’t become self-infested, my dear one.  The bleating self is the soul’s demise; more a hindrance than an emancipator,” she says. “Your iconoclastic thunders may one day ring hollow.”

     Stinging fumes of wind breathe through her window and burn my throat, as I turn from her musty presence.

     Her voice in whispers speaks again.  “My life’s window is darkening each day.  Maybe one more day of living liberty.”  Her body slips back limply on her sheets and her gray eyes close in pausing pain as her body trembles.  Her tongue tries to taste her thirsting lips.

     With pity at the sight of this woman as weak as a dying dog, I approach her now weeping and try to speak.  “What liberty is there in second-hand independence? No indelible mark is etched in the heart of a bird never caged. My gluttonous eyes would devour the world, and savor even the barren bones, yet I’ve been stranded in this pining place with no hope of flight.  Can you grant me any light to end this darking night?” 

            “And yet,” she whispers.  “And yet my flight is eerily imminent, though I am ready.

 

Pale and clouded, lying motionless;

winter’s fury, summer’s flame.

Faded faces, speaking shrilly,

wrestling, stalking in my mind.

Rising, weeping in a corner;

laughing, racing in a field.

Still and stable, screeching silence;

crawling age and creeping years.

I stand on winter’s crippling strand,

staring and shaking by the sight

of embering photos in a drawer,

bathed in memory’s dying dust.

And yet this moment I have peace,

for hope is seared inside my soul.”

 

     In a muted moment she drifts into a soundless sleep, and with the stinging echo of her words I turn and exit her darkened room, returning to the grating light of the lobby.

     At night, I wander to my room and rest my weary head on my pillow.  I close my eyes...

 

     On a rocky rim, just above the softing sands of the beach, I watch a horse as wild as the wind. In deep black grace it rises as if to mount the air. As it runs to the surf a scarlet cord, invisible to the eye a moment before, grips tight its sleek neck and it pitches and stumbles onto the paving stone near the sea screaming and screeching in agony.

     This seemingly unbridled beast shifts and struggles on the shore, and sways its head in horrid desperation. The horse rises, bruised and gasping, and with its head of ebony grace held low it walks from the shore in a hushed captivity, covered with streaks of blood stained tears.

     And the winds cry, “Freedom!” as the horse stands immobile staring at the unrestrained waves.  Wilding whispers wrestle with the night sky as fleeting stars race across the moon’s somber face and haunt the haven of the solitary beast. 

     In this mournful isolation it gazes at the billows and breakers, then stoops over and slumps down in death.  The tide crests at the horse’s crippled hooves.

 

     I open my eyes...

     The turquoise and topaz heat engulfs me and convulses my lungs. I stride toward the sea and pause to rest in its cooling embrace.   Wind and waves stroke my hair and face as I listen to the rhythmic drummer.

 

Freedom’s fable clasps and binds,

the beating wings of noble minds.

A vibrant color is deeply stained,

while darkly painted hues remain.

Grip firm your freedom in your hand,

and watch it slither as the sand.

Now grieve in muted liberty

 pain’s fortune-told captivity.

 

     I sit on the sand and wonder, waiting for the waves to crest.

 

 




© 2008 An owl on the moon


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Pax
A new breath of soft hollow..
This chapter talks about life and faith…

Oh my friend you shed a lot of wisdom in such short chapter, I’m in awe through your words:
The old lady is such a bright day in her weathering days…

“Every moment of an ordinary day is full of wonderment, for the common is only a cloaked disguise of the divine.”
~ oh how she see’s life is such an amazing feat, even simple things are considered divine achievement.

“We live as emotional transients in a world of isolation. Oh, if I could only borrow back so many wasted moments, but only the arrogant have no regrets; so much is paid for with borrowed time.”
~ speechless me, again. Stunning words! If we could only barrowed the wasted moment, well we can only ponder on it and live through by understanding it I guess….

“May I say with no disrespect that I am my own tutor and mentor. I am my own critic and judge. I’ll weigh your words on my spirit’s scales.”
~ this is such sad state… and I really like how the lady replied to him:
“Beware that you don’t become self-infested, my dear one. The bleating self is the soul’s demise; more a hindrance than an emancipator,” she says. “Your iconoclastic thunders may one day ring hollow.”
~ oh what a wisdom, I’m in awe again!!!! Oh she has such strong faith in the heart and soul… that speaks of healing and understanding the life of believing faith. Deeply profound(dictionary please!!! lol)…

“What liberty is there in second-hand independence? No indelible mark is etched in the heart of a bird never caged. My gluttonous eyes would devour the world, and savor even the barren bones, yet I’ve been stranded in this pining place with no hope of flight. Can you grant me any light to end this darking night?”
~ SPEECHLESS, now capital for I’m in awe of his deeply profound confessional darkness.

“hope is seared inside my soul”
~ a deep connective reply that struck me… we never lose hope for its embedded on us long time ago, it’s part of our nature… that is always there, sleeping in the darkness of once heart… just needed a spark to light again...

This is such a great chapter, can be considered a stand-alone short story… for it speaks a so much wisdom of thoughts…

Brilliant as it can ever be….
Awesome!!!!!!


Posted 7 Years Ago


"I am my own tutor and mentor. I am my own critic and judge. I’ll weigh your words on my spirit’s scales.”

Some wonderful and wise words here. How much of life is wasted or lost because we don't want to listen to those who can help. I, me, mine... they can cause so much unnecessary waste and pain.

Posted 10 Years Ago


Every moment of an ordinary day is full of wonderment, for the common is only a cloaked disguise of the divine." ---I so believe this...I tried to express it in the poem My Shasta Daisy. This is another glorious example of writing I strive for. Excellent job!

Posted 10 Years Ago


Congrats on your great winning story

Posted 10 Years Ago



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Added on February 27, 2008


Author

An owl on the moon
An owl on the moon

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2018 was a journey through my poetic novel, An Owl on the Moon. 2019 found me goinging back to a deep inspiration for me... Wonderland...2020 will whisper itself over the seasons... Come walk the worl.. more..

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