[flash fiction] Reprieve.

Image credit: Dan Wiersema
Image credit: Dan Wiersema

(Originally posted 9/5/2007, Writingscape v1.0)


It’s a relief to be dying.

The worse part, so far, has been getting through the thirst and the shriveling that constricted me with such intensity I couldn’t understand why I still lived. The heat. The burn of the sun. It takes more pain to kill you than one would think.

I’ve passed that threshold. I’m numb, now.

I’d never dreamed such pain existed. My mother had always provided constant nourishment for me, for all of us, but then the tempest came, the rending and blowing, and we were torn from each other. Mother stood thick and massive, unharmed. But little me? I must be very far away because I can no longer feel her—or anyone’s—thoughts.

Strange, no longer being part of a collective, this hollow silence. So cruel. Just die, already.

But then I sense it, in the distance yet coming fast. Moistened soil, fresh. Thickening clouds. A dripping and pinging. Fat droplets.

The storm soothes me with its rhythm and soaks into my shrunken husk. The wet wind, long absent, bathes me in waves and restores what was taken until I swell again, plump and fertile, until I can reach into the earth to anchor myself and run feelers, until I can foresee becoming the image of my mother with glorious green hair, sprouting a collective of my own, and the voices return.



Dynastic note: Joyce Fetteroll over at the Dragon Writing Prompts blog challenged everyone to write a rainy scene without ever saying the word rain. In my defense—haha—I limited myself to 15-20 minutes writing time with only the most necessary revision, as it was a writing PROMPT. So please forgive my profusion of adjectives. I’m sure you never thought the life of an acorn could be so frickin’ melodramatic. I don’t even like acorns, particularly. Heh.

Writing prompts take time away from what you usually write on, but the benefits in the long run can be huge. So make a little time for them. It can’t hurt.

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