Tuesday, September 11, 2007

~Requiem for Hope by Ann Walters~

Sadly sighs the wind and in his arms a butterfly still wrapped in its silvery cocoon. He wouldn’t cry for any other lost particle but this. This was his lover and her wings should have unfolded in kisses. Her brilliant bands of gold and green were to have been the gems upon his fingers but now the scales fall from her body like fragments of rainbow. He holds her close, tosses her high among the trees until she snags and catches there, held forever in her crib, her crypt.

***We are overwhelmed by the choice of this contest. So many different directions, interesting, moving themes, all.***

5 comments:

diane said...

I was not the first butterfly to be born into our family. Papa's sister had been one too, as well as a cousin on his mother's side. So he knew exactly what I was when I came out, all slippery and shimmering, still in my chrysallis.
Mama took this picture of the two of us. I look like an overstuffed burrito in Papa's arms. My parents had to care for me diligently for four weeks after my birth. I was still so fragile--a strong gust of wind could have paralyzed me forever.
A few weeks later I emerged. Mostly I played in the backyard, sometimes coming into the house for bowls of nectar at the insistance of my mother. I was loved the same as my brother but of course could not enjoy the same luxuries--swimming lessons, sleepovers, or little league baseball. I rarely longed to have a normal human childhood, though. After all, for most kids, a powerful push on the swing is the closest they get to flight.

Comrade Kevin said...

The relative calm of the open-air market had been thrown into turbulence when the first of two suicide bombers detonated her explosive vest. The explosion produced spread shrapnel in every direction at a distance of up to 900 yards. In long-practiced habit, the villagers collected themselves and went about the gruesome business of separating the dead from the wounded.

This little girl had walked hand in hand to market to purchase the family's supply of food for the week. She was discovered in the rubble of a nearby hut. The blast had reduced it to a mixture of clay, sand, and glass shards. Rescue workers had to use thick gloves to avoid being cut during the search.

Her aunt identified the body, falling upon it with a combination of tears, rapid-fire Arabic, and desperate pleas to Allah. Members of the media swept in to photograph the carnage and to interview family members of the dead. Most held a stoic attitude of wearied resignation.

Sharon Hurlbut said...

Requiem for Hope

Sadly sighs the wind and in his arms a butterfly still wrapped in its silvery cocoon. He wouldn’t cry for any other lost particle but this. This was his lover and her wings should have unfolded in kisses. Her brilliant bands of gold and green were to have been the gems upon his fingers but now the scales fall from her body like fragments of rainbow. He holds her close, tosses her high among the trees until she snags and catches there, held forever in her crib, her crypt.

FranIAm said...

Achmed held his dead daughter in his arms and wept. And wept and wept some more.

Samira was just a little dove, a sweet bird, playing in the yard.

When the bomb exploded, shrapnel flew. Projectiles like heat seeking missles gathered speed and fury.

In a moment, his baby was with him and then she was gone. In an instant, with a shriek- the shriek of the metal object, the shriek of his child, the shriek of his wife.

Then the keening of his wife, like an alarm on a car, that won't shut off.

It is all he can hear and he wants it to stop.

In that moment Achmed crossed a line from man to monster. He too now would kill.

No, he wouldn't. But he wanted to.

Samira, at rest in his arms, like a toy doll held by a child, would not allow it.

Clarke O'Gara said...

Diane that was a great entry!