fall down. get dirty. (static_abyss) wrote,
fall down. get dirty.
static_abyss

LJ Idol Week 1: The Man

I joined a writing contest.

The Man

When God sees the man crossing the street he thinks, about time.

He’s been watching this man since he stepped out the door at the age of three. He was smaller back then, the hair thinner than it is now, but not as thick as it was once before. The man’s hands were smaller then, the face livelier, eyes round with wonder. He used to jump on flower beds and run, his hair flopping on top of his head, until he couldn’t anymore.

When God saw that child he thought, he’s going somewhere.

But, the child grows, his hair lightening until it’s almost unrecognizable from when he was small enough to fit into the cupboards. The fingers lengthen, the angles of the face sharpen. Everything changes, the smiles are tighter, the ones for the parents cold, the ones for the friends, easy, fake. No one but the altar with the pictures and crosses can see the real smile, the downward turns of the mouth, the eyes; eyes that remain the same.

God hears him calling, soft words echoing through the vast expanse of time and space—each one lingering, touching corners of the world that this young man will never see. The tears on the face touch hearts that the young man is not even aware are watching.

When God saw that young man he thought, he can still go somewhere.

There comes a day when the young man stops crying. Hair falls, hands grow old and weary, tired of the tasks they must do. The skin of the face gives up its battle with gravity. The mouth gives up too, too tired to keep up pretenses with the world. This face has no smile, no carefree laughter from lips that belonged to the child.

The words keep coming, echoing the sorrows of a man much older than he looks. There is a tinge of ice under the words, layered thin so that it’s hard to hear, but there all the same, like the man is reproaching those who listen, reproaching the one who could have done something, but never did.

God watches this man and thinks, if he could move.

Nothing moves him, the man at the edge of the street, looking straight ahead at the sign that says “Go.” There are no cars, the street on his side silent. God has answered his call, from the moment the child stepped into the world and even before the words fell from that mouth. He has known what the man would ask and He has done it.

There is no one lining this side of the street, not a sound from anything, because at this moment nothing exists but this man, the street and the sign that says “Go.” It’s been this way from the beginning, before tears and words, but the man doesn’t seem to realize this. He is looking at the sign, reading it, but he doesn’t move, not even when the people from the other side wave at him.

When God sees this unmoving man he thinks, you have prayed, now move.

One day, the eyes change, focused and clear. The man blinks like he’s seeing things for the first time. He looks both ways, eyes drifting over the empty street, the endless emptiness of the place he is in. He takes a step forward looking back at where his feet have left permanent imprints on the ground. He looks forward, the other side of the street sending over sounds of laughter; alive.

The man that crosses the street doesn’t look both ways, doesn’t look up to see if the person holding his hand is smiling because there is no one holding his hand.

When God sees the man crossing the street he thinks, about time.
Tags: lj idol, week 1
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