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|Posted on January 23, 2012 at 4:40 PM|
Eyes That Truly See
by E. A. Irwin
Gregory walked through life not understanding what it meant to be alive. At one time he’d known, now, he wasn’t sure. His life had turned into a momentum of shifting grays with an occasional sepia tone added if something happened to alter his existence.
A recollection flashed through Gregory’s mind. An evanescent moment when color existed and sound meant something other than cacophony beating against his eardrum. Visions filtered through his brain when he closed his eyes, allowing her beauty to fill the recesses of his emptiness.
Wisps of memory spun their magic, weaving before him a tapestry of their shared life. Strands of ebony claimed her head in silken tresses, while brushes dipped in the ocean’s hues painted her eyes with color. Gregory sighed, remembering how they laughed while eating a peach; often telling her that her cheeks were abloom with the same shade as that luscious fruit. Kissing the nectar from her lips was his greatest joy on those days.
The remembrance faded to a bleached watercolor, and then turned gray as Gregory released the vision. Biting back tears, he made his way through the room cognizant life for him had almost stopped. Even the ticking from a nearby clock reminded him of the passing of time, setting Gregory’s teeth on edge. He watched the advancing minute hand as one would watch a slow waltz. The pulsing movement a hypnotizing effect, steadily luring him to the place he constantly avoided.
Sound infused his mind—a trickle of conversation, her full-bodied laughter, and the gentle whispers in the night as she laid her head against his chest and sighed. Oh, how he genuinely missed the sounds of her cries in the night when they were finally able to truly become one by the worship of each others’ bodies.
Those sounds soon faded along with the color of his previous life, leaving vacant the part of his soul which could never be refilled. Gregory sat at his desk, aimlessly swiping a layer of dust away as he stared at the calendar. He checked his movement as his eyes honed in on the date.
Another memory reeled his mind. Pushed the agony through his gut as the vision plummeted him backward. She lay in his arms. Blood gushed from her as he tried to gather the remaining bits of her flesh and reform them into the woman he loved. Her black hair matted and full of glass. Her eyes fixed, no longer holding the beauty of the ocean’s depths. Her cheeks lacked color, and the lips he so loved to kiss were blanched and slack. Gregory lost her that day when a hit and run driver mowed her down in a crosswalk outside their home. Lost the ability to save the most important thing in his life. More than that, Gregory had lost himself to the eternal miasma in his head as he relived the moment of impact; no longer able to identify with the living, only waiting for the moment when God would claim his life for eternity.
Gregory jumped as a man entered his cubicle and began speaking. “Yes?”
“I know it hasn’t been very long since your wife died, and you have only been back to work a few months. But we would like to tell you how proud we are that you continued living through what must have been a horrendous time in your life.”
“I haven’t done anything to make you proud of me. I spend my time walking through my days remembering how much I’m alone.”
The man pointed to the crowd around Gregory’s desk. “You aren’t alone, Gregory. We all care, just look around. Who are you going to believe, me, or your own eyes?”
©E. A. Irwin
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