There was a time many moons and suns ago, when I was a different color. I was young once too you know. I’ve heard, or actually since I don’t hear, I’ve felt that I am descended from a long line, that my ancestors on these great dry plains are plentiful, some might even still be floating around.
The old ones. One or two passed me by in my younger days. Those were but brief encounters. Time stands still in those times when the yearning thirst for rains and moisture are long, here within the shimmering furnace of nowhere.
I am sure that had I eyes to see, I would not be fond of the view, because despite the changing seasons, there is not much change on these distant plains – I can feel it.
I thought my day was up, or days. I thought my roots had reached for the last damp, or the last lick of dew to be had in this rocky outcrop, in the hard and the dry. I have let go pieces of myself – there will always be a branch to spare.
I suppose I should’ve expected it, having experienced the faint wisp of a passing relative, that I one day too would be free.
I passed by some embers some time ago, can’t say how long. It could well have been some relatives of mine, giving way for another world, another time. The wind will claim them. The wind claims everything, just as it carries and rolls me along.
It’s still dry here. It’s always dry here. Ancient murmurings make this to be that place called the cousin to a desert. Why, because what little growth there is – like myself – provides that glimmer of hope, where a desert has none. I have passed by some far off dwellings and some lonely living things. All are waiting, that is all anyone does here, to wait, for those clouds to bring a faint promise...
We wait. I use to wait too, until I took this journey, this long journey. Who knows how long it will last or where I will go. I do know that there is no more waiting, not for me. But, I do feel like this journey, my only one of substantive distance, shall be my first, my last, and my only.
For now, I tumble on… and in this vast land of nothingness but dust and thirst I am what I am. I am home, in this place without time, of dust and rock and me, where the sun is my shelter, referred to by many in a grating whisper, on an umpteenth wind as, ‘Thirstland’.
--- Flash fiction by Steven Benjamin
| || |