Before You Hit The Ground.

Before You Hit The Ground.

A Story by dustyhowls

Story 11 from my Touch the Falling Stars collection.


She has grey eyes that can see deep inside your heart and up through the sky.




            She hasn’t had a very happy life, hard reality robbing her of all her dreams before they’d even been given the chance to become fully formed and no one ever taught her to wake up before you hit the ground --


            This is a poem I wrote.


-- which she does every single day and every single night so now she is covered in scrapes and scabs and bruises and cuts and even burns.  


It’s called “Eternity”, but before I start I’d just like to say that --


And when she wakes up her heart is racing and pumping blood into every inch of her at breakneck speed until she wonders if her neck really is going to break off, because sometimes it does, and then of course she can’t go back to sleep which is a real shame because if she did she’d find a first-aids kit complete with instructions up ahead.


-- writing is what I live for.


Of course if there weren’t any she could just write her own, even though maybe they wouldn’t be too accurate or reliable and she’d end up with a Valium on her ankle and a band-aid down her throat, because she lives off of writing or it’s possible that it lives off of her "


Okay, now I’m going to start.


-- because it probably wouldn’t save her if she tried to swallow the band-aid and started to choke and in fact if you’ll remember it was what got her into that situation in the first place unless it was her for writing the instructions or the fall for waking her or no one, who never taught her to wake up before you hit the ground.


“I see a glimmer in your eyes,

I have a doubt about your scent,

Your voice sounds subtly different, but --“


            But when she doesn’t fall, and sometimes even when she does, she writes, meaning that she grabs a handful or two of words from the new improved version of alphabet soup (improved because it’s orange juice, she hates soup) and rearranges them, ignoring her sticky hands, and takes them apart and puts them back together again like building blocks (which they are, building blocks of her story) --


            “--You told me

You hadn’t changed.

You told me

You’d never change.”


            -- and then she paints dark desolate pictures with what’s left and jumps right into them with her sticky hands even though the paint is still wet like jumping off a cliff and landing on a wet trampoline.


            “By the light of my candle,

Flickering to and fro,

I can feel her shiver as she --“


            She used to jump on trampolines all the time when she was a kid (even though she still is a kid) but the strong winter winds would always come for her and blow her away and she could never understand how the other children just kept jumping as if there was nothing wrong, as if they couldn’t even feel it.


            “--Turns to the silver moon

And howls, a song of beauty

And death

And destruction and mourning --“


            And then she’d roll over and over and over in the grass down down down a hill until a kind-hearted boy would find her and try to stop her from falling any farther --


            “--As our mourning begins and ends

In the same frail, dying breath


As the one you let out when

I realized that --“


-- but by that time she’d be crying out of pain and fear and she’d be so relieved that she’d been stopped that she’d cry harder and harder which would cause her to start rolling again --


“--You told me but you lied,

I told you but I gave you




And you refused to listen,

You threw it all away and now--“


            -- which would cause him to think that she was crying because she wanted to fall which would cause him to decide that she was crazy --


            “--Your flame has burned out

But you’ve solidified, thick crunching newly

Laid pavement "

The shine of makeup on her

Undernourished cheeks,

Unhealthy glow making up for

All that we know.”


            -- which would cause him to pull out the hammer and nails that he usually used to keep people from falling apart and tie her and chain her to the cold hard ground crawling with ants and leave her out to die, all the while believing that he was keeping her alive, and walk away, ignoring her renewed cries --


            “But your rain is my pain

As our nightmares turn to riches,

As our dreams turn to clouds


That will chase her moon away; --“


            --and then the kids from the trampoline would come and they’d all walk on her as though she’d never existed and the boy would never come back and she’d get so tired of all these nevers because she’s remember when she used to dream of forevers.


            “--Her horror-struck gaze

At the instant that she fell

Will haunt us for as long as

Guilt has the power to

Set me free.”


            But now she doesn’t do that anymore, now she jumps off cliffs with inflatable wings to keep her in the air but a bird will peck at them with its sharp inquisitive beak --


            “But through your pain

And my rain

And her final dying breath, --“


            -- which is when she’ll find out that the wings weren’t filled with air, but with toxic gas --


            “--There is a light

Obscuring my night

Showing us our plight

More clearly than we’d like to see.”


-- and she’ll plummet down down down fully expecting to hit the ground as she so often does --


“For through her dark eyes

Through my battered sunrise, --“


            -- but a well-meaning mother will stretch out a bamboo mat to catch her, but she won’t know that the kids across the way are lighting fire crackers because she’ll have forgotten that it’s the Fourth of July --


            “--I see that we will go

Forever madly to and fro

Forever shining, crying, no!”


            -- so when she finally nears the ground she’ll hear a bang and a crunch of glass and the mother will yell and run for cover and she’ll hit something hard warm round and hold on with all her might --


            “Trapped in a street light,

Flutter your wings but --“


-- but the heat will burn her already calloused hands and with a startled cry she will let go just as the light bulb shatters --


            “--We are forever lost--“


            -- and the pieces fall down onto the ground.


            “--In her ethereal insanity.”


            And that’s when she wakes up with her racing heart pumping blood into her veins wondering if she’s broken her neck this time and she stays awake and misses out on the first-aids kit and has some orange juice and writes another story about a girl who could never quite control the vast world of her imagination, even though they told her to not imagine at all.


            That’s it, thank you all.

© 2010 dustyhowls

Author's Note

Anything, as per usual.

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Added on March 15, 2010
Last Updated on March 15, 2010
Tags: sky, dream, hit the ground, wake up, writer, write, eternity, imagine, imagination, fall, falling, fly, flying, trampoline, insanity, street light, dustyhowls



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