Article: 288691 of talk.bizarre
Newsgroups: talk.bizarre
Subject: (FTSD) seeds
Date: 2 Dec 1996 00:18:09 -0500
Organization: Mail to Usenet Gateway
Lines: 68
Message-ID: <961201.001916.+0200.LIOREN1@WEIZMANN.WEIZMANN.AC.IL>
X-Mailer:     MailBook 96.01.000

  It was that certain time after dinner, when the food is gone but for
the crumbs and the dishes are resting in the kitchen.  I was drinking strong
Turkish coffee from a small cup.  Jean had her hands around her large
glass mug, filled with steaming herbal tea.  The kids had their gay porcelain
mugs on the table, all cocoa gone, waiting with their eyes forced open and
feigning interest in what Jean was saying, well aware they'd be put
to sleep when she's done.  It was winter outside.  Not at home.  Here
it was warm and safe.

  "And that is how we get bread," Jean said, absent-mindedly
pulling on her practical pigtail, while the steam from her tea rose and
made her eyes glitter.  I didn't like seeing her in that pigtail.
I knew she would look so beautiful when she got around to it.  I wished
she could be that all her life.

  "But Mom," the older kid stalled, thinking of something to ask, "how
does the wheat grow?"

  Jean closed her eyes and wore a patient smile.   "Well dear, God makes the
wheat grow, and then we get bread."

  "But how, how does it grow?"

  She made one of her short, bright, didactical laughs.  "You're such a
sweetie, Chris, you know?"  She ruffled his hair while he made his "I'm
not having fun" look.  "C'mon kids, let's put you to bed."  We all got
up, and I walked outside as the kids padded to bed, slippers making no
sound against carpets.

  The door creaked shut behind me, and a silent moment passed.  I
realised how hot it was indoors.  I took a sweet breath, dreaming of ice
crystals dreaming of being snowflakes, and started walking away from the house.

  Outside it was dark, still and pretty cold.  A random cricket was
trying to start a conversation as I passed him.  The ground was nearly
frozen and I could feel it through my sandals, walking through the short
grass to our patch.  I noticed I cast less of a shadow on the ground now -
back in the house I could imagine one curtained room's light going off.  Soon
another will be on.  She'll be reading up for me, after she puts on her healthy
make-up mask for the night.

  I kneeled down among the short seedlings, held one in my hand.
Rising like a hope out of the black soil, it was nothing but two wide
leaves, the size of a finger each.  Touching one hand to the ground, I gently
pulled the plant out a bit and stretched its leaves out.  I went through the
others, then took a step back to look at the little patch of errant
green, gathering dew, growing against an endless horizon of nothing at all.
As if it was putting the whole nothingness into shame by its truth, its
unforgivable simplicity.

  Then I turned back home, leaving the sooty shoes by the back door
and walking barefoot past the now-empty kithcen and into our bedroom.
Jean had fallen asleep with a book in her lap and her reading glasses on.
I took them off and put the book away, then watched her smiling face for a

Everything was so perfect.

I turned off the last light and we slept.

(Attribution, Dammit: this idea bilong Joseph Conrad.)

-- "Sire, will itself is nothing but delusion, and when it comes into  --
action it shakes the foundations of Earth.  When delusion leads to action
 it is no longer a delusion but the beat of this world.  The delusions of
----    the singular are the soul of the world."  -- Nathan Shacham. ----