Hanging the Stars

Hanging the Stars

A Story by Annie

A story I had to write for my English class. Everyone loved it and wanted me to submit it to our school's literary journal. The assignment was to make a fictional story with a theme. Please enjoy!!!


I am the dusk. I am the one who hangs the stars.

I have a sibling, the dawn; who collects the stars and flies clouds across the horizon. I have never met them. We are opposite, bringing balance to the sky.

I ride the moon around the sky, and when the sun is setting it is my turn to bring light. When my job is finished, I fly back to the moon to admire my wonderful work and prepare for a new night.

The stars are my children. They are created from pieces of my heart, overflowing with the love and care I have for them. The stars are beautiful and I want nothing more than to hang them forever.

Many centuries ago, the people on the ground nearly dismissed me from my life in the sky. Their strange, black-as-midnight smokes blotted out my beautiful stars for years. Their pollutions choked me and my children until we glowed so faintly I thought we may flicker out forever. Still, however, I fought on, hanging the stars every night in hopes that someone would look up and miss my paintings in the sky. At some point, which I do not remember, my wishes were answered and the smokes began to thin out. My wonderful children grew a bit brighter, night by night. It began to take less effort to will the stars to glow, and I, too, was getting my own twinkling back.

I look back on those years with melancholy now. They did not devastate us, and we were able to get past those times. We burn brighter than ever now.

There are some nights, like to-night, when I wish to hang few stars so I may look down from my moon and look at the world below.

How fascinating it is to me! The sky I own seems reflected below me, in their street lights and multi-colored signs. I wonder what their intent is, if they mean to copy my work. If this is so, I welcome their efforts.

On these certain nights I wonder about the people below me. Maybe they do not even notice my artistry anymore. Maybe they are so busy replicating my stars that they see right past them now. I want so badly to fly down and see if anyone still notices them. I think of the upturned faces, watching in awe as I zip across the sky, scattering flecks of light everywhere I go.

Then another thought hits me. The inhabitants of earth, busily hurrying hither and thither and not once glancing at the sky. Never seeing the immaculate work I put forth for them nightly. This thought strikes me with a sad kind of certainty. If they appreciate my work, why have I not gotten a visitor in the sky to tell me so?

I long to fly down and ask them, to see into their lives. I want to see what distracts them from the art in the sky I strive so hard to perfect for them.

I look back at my gorgeous sky; the few stars I have hung to-night glisten brightly in the sky. Am I the only one who can see them?

My moon has travelled far across the sky, and I am growing tired. Soon the dawn will be collecting my stars, never seen by the world below. I am able to think one more coherent thought before I sleep; tomorrow will be a starless night, for I am going to pay my people below a visit.


I awake, and after the cobwebs leave my mind, I am able to remember my fine idea from the night before. My heart hurts for the stars I will not place to-night. No artwork to decorate my home. I must make a journey, which may take the whole night. I grow happier when I think that if I finish my visit early, I can return and place a few stars before the sun rises again.

I am not nervous. I have never before had the need to feel nervous, here, at home in the night time. It is hard for me to understand the emotion which I am trying to convey. I feel nothing but happiness now. Maybe I will reeducate the people of earth about my work, and they will once again look to the sky at night. Once again they will delight in the sunset, knowing I will fly across the sky with a flourish.

I say a last goodbye to my moon and my night, promising to be back soon. Slowly, I descend to the face of the earth, to a place I have never been, and only seen closely when I skim above the tallest mountains.

As I get closer to its surface, details begin to grow finer. There is movement everywhere I look. I sit on the top of a tree for a while, and its roughness hurts my fragile skin. I am watching the humans go about their busy nights. Not one of them looks up. They probably do not even notice that the night sky is missing its dazzling trademark. This saddens me, and I descend a little farther towards their world.

I tread softly on their dry, rough ground, and it feels worse than the tree. I take in my surroundings quickly; I wish to see how the people here live. I am now more curious about this world than speculative about what they think of me. This new world is strange to me, and I find myself longing for more. I have never known anything but the darkness of the night. I love the darkness and the stars; but is it not good to adventure outside of what you know?

I see now that I was right. The residents of earth have created their own fake starlight and captured it in everything; circular globes, tall poles standing up off the ground, boxes hung from houses. They are not nearly as beautiful as my stars, and they have a sickly yellow tint.

There are few people around and it occurs to me that they may sleep at the same time the dawn does. I cannot think of a reason why.

After quite a while of traveling above the treetops again, I come to a bustling city. This will be a perfect place to watch the people go about their lives.

I move towards the surface again, and the stench of the smoke clouds from all those years ago hits my senses. In a daze, I fall out of the sky and onto the rough ground. I am in pain. Is this what pain feels like? I have never known such a sad physical feeling.

It is a long time before I can open my eyes again. When I do, there seems to be a large group of people crowded around me. How odd these creatures look! And how big! I nearly forget the agony I am in to turn and look at all of them. So many colors that I have not seen in the sky before! So many noises pounding through my ears! So many tastes in the air!

The humans around me are not moving. Their mouths hang open as they all look at me, and I can feel myself doing the same.

All at once, a louder noise punctures the air. It is pain in the form of sound. Bright flashing lights appear from nowhere, blinding me with reds and blues. I am dizzy, and I close my eyes in horror. This world is not as I expected it to be.

Then I am moving. Something is moving me; I am not putting forth any effort. I begin to panic, and at last I believe I understand nervousness.

I struggle against whatever is moving me but I am still too hurt. The people around me are making loud, harsh sounds with their mouths. I am lost and confused, and everything around me is hurting me.

I am shoved into a small, dark space. Oh, yes! How beautiful the darkness is once again. How very comforting it is for me. Wherever I am is cramped but it is dark and the sounds outside are muffled. I am alone for the moment. Maybe these people are saving me. I feel as if my container is moving.
It seems like only a few fleeting moments in the wondrous darkness before I am pulled out.

Blinding light throws its tendrils upon me and again I am dizzy. I am put on a smooth, cold surface and there are many angry looking people standing around me. They make more harsh sounds from their mouths and I flinch. One human holds a tube of colored liquid in his hand, pointed at one end, and in one swift moment, he shoves it at me and I feel a burst of excruciation. My vision starts to blur, and I feel very tired. I hover somewhere between sleep and wakefulness.

When I regain full consciousness some time later, I am sore and I cannot move. The people still surround me, and they begin to poke at me and squeeze me and hit me, and then they turn to pieces of paper in their hands and scribble across them. They are still talking, which invades my thoughts and punctures through any ideas or questions I have. I look down at myself and I see that I have already lost my glow. I want to cry out but I am so tired.

It seems to take years for these people to be done hurting me. I do not understand what they want. I only understand that they are not saving me, as I had hoped. After what feels like an eternity, they all step back. They look at me for quite some time and lower their talking noises. I am lying on the cold surface, and I cannot find the strength to move myself.

I wish to fly, far from here, back to my home, but they have torn my wings from me. They have not been careful with my delicate, beautiful wings, and I feel only emptiness where they once had been. I try to cry out again, to mourn for my detrimental loss. Words do not explain the unending grief I feel.

One of the people grabs me and puts me in my dark, tight space, but it does not comfort me this time. I await my next torture.

I have lost track of time long ago, when I first left my sky. How long has it been since then? Days? Months? Millennia? Could it have only been a few hours?

When at last my prison is opened again, I am dumped somewhere new. I seem to be in a large grey box, made of the horrible material I first felt when landing upon this world. Three of the walls are glass, including the ceiling of the room. The rest of the walls and the floor have crudely painted murals of a forest painted on them. There is grass growing in a patch in a corner of the room. I gingerly make my way there, only to find out that the grass feels jagged on my tender skin. I sit as softly as I can upon the stone ground, and I look through the glass. Many people, maybe hundreds, crowd their faces against the glass and again I feel trapped. They are all talking very quickly, and I can hear them in my tomb. Endlessly, they stare at me.

I know what is happening to me. I am being held captive in this place. I have fallen to the status of a zoo creature. I finally have the strength to cry out, to communicate with these horrible beings. I am begging them to me me go.

They are all quiet now. They are smiling. They have heard me, they have heard my voice but they do not understand me. I cry out louder, pleading for release, and it sounds like the wind through a thousand wind chimes. People are murmuring among themselves, waiting for me to sing again. I will not.

More people come, every time I look to the glass there are different faces.

I eventually get to see my sibling through the glass, and they are beautiful. The dawn brings such a bright blue sky as opposed to my deep black. It is the only thing that comforts me. I wonder if the dawn misses collecting my stars.

My heart feels like it explodes with pain. I will never again hang the stars, never take pleasure in seeing my work. My children will never be born again. The stars will never shine in the night sky again.

The night rolls around, and I feel that my home is an ocean away from me. I will never get to return.

Time passes. I cannot count the passing of this torture. My skin, once soft and fragile, is now cracked and splitting. My glow has been gone for a very long time. People come to see me, and then they leave. But I can never leave, for humans only want to possess that which they can never understand.

The people, I know, are deliberating about what I could possibly be. They laugh, and talk to each other. They may guess all they like, but they will never know the truth, because they will never look to the sky.

I was the dusk. I was the one who hung the stars.

© 2013 Annie

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Added on September 19, 2013
Last Updated on September 19, 2013
Tags: fiction, stars, creature, fables, tales




My name's Annie, and these are a few of my ideas floating around my head. They may never get finished and they may not be very good, but I invest my time in them and I think that's pretty rad. So read.. more..

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