Wednesday, April 3, 2013

They Would Have Called Her Beautiful Before (A Sketch)

A spray of dirty rainwater awoke her and she looked up to see the weathered tires spinning past into the dreary gray morning. She was tired and weathered herself, and her upturned face invited the fat droplets that shook her worn frame. Rain was supposed to be revitalizing, but instead it just made her weary. Rain like the day she was here to commemorate. And it was still raining; rain day after day, as if it had never stopped at all.

An SUV sputtered by, and a little boy peered out the tinted backseat window at her. Children were the only ones who ever seemed to notice. His nose was pressed up against the glass, his nostrils fogging the window in two small ovals. But his eyes only lingered on her for a moment as they passed, quickly leaping forward to some new object of interest along the roadside.


His name, so lovingly and tearfully inscribed with a black Crayola on the small wooden cross next to her, had long ago washed away, ink leaching into the dark soil and disappearing. Forgotten. She was the only one left to mark that he had ever driven down this road; the sole memorial of the anxious moment before the boy in the SUV started watching but after the rain started and then never stopped; the dreamlike Newtonian nightmare when two sliding objects stayed in motion and he was laid to rest.

She was tired of being the only one to remember.

He was one moment here, the next moment evanescent. And yet she was tied down, ageless yet dying slowly in the rain that never stopped. Would never stop until her last weary silk rose petal fell and washed away toward the ocean with all the rest.

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