Bright White Digression


A weekend of fever dreams and sign posts…


I stand on pale gleaming gravel, curling ahead and behind me through the old growth of my youth.

Beyond the evergreens I see the doomed mountain, white and sharp against a leeched sky. I remember that I will soon watch it die, blasted into gray steam as I stare, surrounded by horses and people who hate me.

Music drifts from below, singing on the scent of drifting wood smoke. A white sportscoat and a pink carnation…my father is near. I remember he dies too, long after his mountain, abrupt and random like a handful of plummeting beads. I will not watch him fall, I will only feel him scatter.

I walk up the gravel road, away from the music and into the trees. The air smells wet and rich, approaching winter clear in the scent. I continue through the dense woods to the fated clearing I remember, a ring of twisted stumps, a grim firepit, footprints in the ashen dirt.

She sits by the same charred wood, awaiting me.

I watch her from a distance. Her skin translucent white, like frozen milk. Her long hair opalescent, her dark eyes blind. She looks through me.

“I will wonder where you have gone…” Her words have the weight of sterile ages, of lush memory. They are measured and soft and precise, like an aunt’s embrace.

The sky slowly grows brighter as I watch her considering what else she is supposed to say. My silence disconcerts her. It disconcerts me.

My eyes begin to tear from the glare. She is growing agitated, anxious.

“Things won’t be as they were before…”

The sky is pure white now, the light streams all around her, through the trees like rushing water. She can’t feel me anymore.

I finally speak as movement is all around me. The words tear through me like glass.

“No they won’t. I am changing the rules…I will not go through this forever. I will accept the scar, salvage what I can and move on. I am done with white.”

She says something…but I don’t know what as the light finally shatters and dies and I am in the dark, surrounded by black and breathing and doubt.

I can still smell the winter as my eyes tear.


1 Comment

  1. Doubt is not a bad thing.

    Doubt means you’re still growing. Doubt means you haven’t frozen in place. Doubt means you’re still capable of taking risks.

    The down side of doubt is yes, insecurity thrives on it. Pain doubles, hurt trebles. These *are* bad things.

    But don’t discount doubt. Doubt is the great unknowing. Doubt means you don’t have all the answers, but you’re willing to look for them.

    Doubt means you’re not dead yet. Doubt is, ever so slightly, flavored with freedom. And that’s a *very* good thing indeed.

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