Day 195: Make a snowball.

Originally scheduled for Thursday, July 14 — motherfucking Bastille Day, that was.

I went outside, holding the deck of cards. Once, we’d shuffled them together — before you were gone — and earth had fallen from our fingers, and clouds and thunder filled the sky.

It was hot, outside. It has been hot for a long time. The sun was not yet up, and the heat was already oppressive, stagnant and heavy and thick.

I held the cards in my hand, and thought of snow. I thought of you, and the time we held the cards, our fingers moving together, shuffling, the earth falling from our hands, the clouds and the thunder and the howling wind.

Before you were gone.

I held the cards, but I was afraid to make them move: it had been so long since I’d taken them out, so long since I’d tried their magic, so long since I’d felt there was any point in trying. I stood, in the rising heat, looking without looking at anything in particular, my mind wandering — it was too hot to think — wandering through memories of you, and memories of a time when it was cold, when the world was blanketed in snow.

The heat became tangible, reified, and I ceased to be myself.

 

When I came back to myself, I was lying in the garden, and the world was blanketed in snow. The cards were scattered all about me. Whether I — or the cards — had conjured the snow, or whether I had wandered out of myself, in a fugue state, until the heat broke and winter came on, I never knew. I suppose I could have asked, but whom would I have asked? Who was left?

I rolled onto my knees, and staggered to my feet. The sun was high and clear, but gave no warmth.

I bent down, took a handful of snow, formed it into a ball, and threw it at the place where you should have been standing — where once you stood, while we watched the storm we’d called forth, and were afraid.

Then I went inside, poured a glass of wine, and faded away.

(Apologies to Charles Williams.)

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