Monday, March 25, 2013

Tommy's Twilight

By: James Rosier Jr.


There once lived, in a quiet little pond, a goldfish name Tommy. Tommy was no ordinary goldfish rather what others in his school often labeled a daydreamer. So many more times than he could recall he found himself looking up at the sky of his pond trying to make sense of the strange swirled images he often caught glimpses of just beyond his world. He was often puzzled by their movement and their origin.

Many times he had asked his teachers or parents what it was that lived just beyond the barrier that separated his world from “out there?” Yet those he asked would answer, “There is nothing beyond this place. That is the edge of reality there, the surface of our pond. Beyond that is only empty space.”

Tommy would swim around thinking about his atmosphere which he fully understood. He would think of how he was comfortable moving around in his world and how he was taught to search for food on the pond floor. He considered how he communicated with relatives and played with friends; how even fish of another species were not strange to him and how they each had a frame of reference with which to perceive their aquatic three dimensional reality.

One day as Tommy was drifting along on a warm current something strange and all together alien broke the surface of the water. At first Tommy was afraid and tried to flee but the indescribable thing was swift and seemed to see his every move. Tommy eventually gave in to the fact that he had no place to hide and surrendered to what he surely knew was his death. In the infinitely long seconds leading to his rapture he recalled stories of others who had been claimed by the dark figure who came to take all fish home at some point and appreciated that no fish knew the time or day of his ending. Even as he pondered these things he felt himself lifted up and the higher he was lifted the brighter his world became. The brighter it became the warmer his skin was and soon he found himself also breaking the surface of the pond and struggling for a moment to breath. He was blinded by the intense light and made dizzy by the movement all around until at once he felt himself falling and landing in a warm and quiet place.

Tommy, half afraid to open his eyes, eventually did so. This place around him was clear and bright and the ground was covered in colorful stones. There were no sounds except for a gentle, nonlocal humming. The plants were bright green and as though he had wished it suddenly the tastiest of foods rained from the sky and he had none to challenge for his meal.

Tommy’s eyes grew wide as he looked around his new home. Before in the pond all was dark and one could not see very far. There was only the floor of the pond and the space around one. The upward field of view was limited as well by a mirror of a sky that only during certain times yielded a fuzzy glimpse of a “somethingness” gleaming from elsewhere. He had no words to describe what it may have been for his language was limited by the things he had experienced before, the things he knew and had quantified. Here though, he could see in every direction for great distances and even time seemed to consist of everything at once. Suddenly, just then his eyes caught a glimpse of something strange yet all too familiar. In a distant corner of the space beyond his new world he saw what looked like another body of water yet this was a much different perspective than he had ever seen before for he found himself looking at the surface of his pond from the other side.
 
 
Just below the surface, however, he could see figures moving about and recognized them as his friends and family he had left behind. He called out to them in vain for the distance between them was great and his voice was held captive by the glass of his new world, the space between him and his old world and the surface of the pond itself. Had his voice arrived at its destination at all it surely would have been faint, a mere whisper he thought and yet he was well and alive in a reality outside of and encompassing the one he once held for all inclusive. Tommy’s thoughts wandered as stared at the shadows of his past swimming about. If he now found himself in a greater world that nested the once he once occupied, what hen, if anything lay just beyond his current perspective? As he contemplated this new and nearly insane concept he heard a strange sound from behind him and a new light illuminated his bowl. The sound was a bell and the light came from beyond the door of the pet shop he only partially perceived and yet without his commanding either he was now on his way to yet another new place where his falsely interpreted death meant a new life and his reality would again be nested in another.

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