Submitted for GBE2 Week#127
He Guards The Echoes of His Memory
Forty years and a day ago, he had it all--laughter, love,youth, and a family of warmth joined safely together in his living room . Nobody ever sees a tornado coming from their blind side. He didn't watch the weather channel that morning before he rolled out of the driveway. Something the sky was brewing was on its way, and it appeared as dark as the end of time...as eerie as a ghostly fist repeatedly pounding the same dreadful chord.
Forty years and a day later, the neighborhood children take turns daring each other to startle the long-bearded man with dusty eyes, who stares all day and night at the broken-down shack that so wearily leans over the edge of a dead-end street; but he hears and sees no distractions...he'll never leave or lose sight of home again.
Every evening she takes long runs that lead to anywhere but there. If she runs fast enough, she could almost be the invincible wind...nothing could ever snatch the wind when it flies through the dark. A hope beats beneath her chest that this is the final run that will put the screaming daylight to rest. She knows if she turns to look back at the long stretch of road behind her, she'll see bruises everywhere, and that solid white line will become a scar that connects the past to now.
Suddenly, a pale little girl--with the woman's same scared sound, though much younger voice --
hurries and catches up to the runner just as she collapses near the bridge; kneeling beside her, she asks with good-bye eyes, to be rocked to sleep one last time.
She climbed as far north as she could up October's tree, and waited patiently until December--but she still felt the same when the first snow finally came. She shook her hair in the brisk air hoping her thoughts would drop with fall. The tag on her clothes described what little girls were made of, and the fancy ladies they must grow to be. The mirror on the wall told her she should love a boy or not at all. Now Autumn has run out of paint, and it doesn't matter, because changing her true colors was never a possibility.