Friday, January 19, 2007

Starry-Eyed

New

Sunday afternoon. Rainy and peaceful and beautiful. Tara and I were lying on my bed passing a joint back and forth. We're silent, enjoying the sleep-like quality of the day, until she says:

"I can see the future. Wanna try?"

Goofy fuck, I think. Tara's been my best friend since 3rd grade. Sometimes I think we don't have much in common anymore. She's into peasant skirts and power crystals and tofu. Me... not so much. But my life wouldn't be the same without her. She brings some magic (and marijuana) to my practicality. We indulge each other.

"Sure, Tara. How can I see the future?"

"Remember when you were a kid, and you'd press your hands against your eyes to see stars?"

"Yeah."

"Start there."

I closed my eyes and lightly pushed my palms against my lids.

"What do you see?"

"Corneal damage."

"You're no fun, Ashley. For real. Tell me what you see."

I sighed. "I see stars. I see swirls and galaxies and bursts of light. It's like I'm moving through space."

"Good. Now, keep your eyes closed."

She cupped my chin with her hand. I thought for a minute that she was going to kiss me, and I held my breath. Then she touched a fingertip to my forehead, and the stars came into focus.

A single galaxy zoomed in from my right. Its arms spun slowly, leaking light into the corners of my eyes. I fell into its pink clouds. I focused on one point of light until it expanded into a disc, then a great globe with a host of circling rocks, almost filling my vision. I watched the planet's meticulous spin, counting off time, speeding it up and slowing it down, but always moving forward, always to the future, always in one direction around a far away star.

I moved on, further in, to the smaller worlds. The black was so absolute, I could only aim my gaze at the sun in the center. Finally a blue speck appeared, grew, a tiny jewel expanding like a salt crystal - it overtook me until I was in that blue world.

Where I looked for ocean, I saw ice. Flat ice from horizon to horizon, and me getting closer and closer to the ground. I put out my hands to catch myself, and the world dissolved. I smelled the sweet smoke around me and heard the rain on the roof.

"What happened?" I asked.

"You took the pressure off your eyelids."

"They hurt."

"It will go away in a minute. So?"

I told Tara about what I'd seen.I felt like I'd let her down, forgetting myself and ending the vision too quickly. And she seemed genuinely disappointed.

"I'm sorry."

"Oh, no," she said. "You didn't do anything wrong. I think maybe you were in the wrong galaxy. That happens sometimes. But you lose a bit of the impressiveness of it when you don't get to peek down on humanity."

"It was beautiful."

"Yeah." She handed the joint to me.

"I think I'm good. Thanks."

I closed my eyes and tried to retrace my flight, as though I knew enough about the universe to determine where I'd been. But surely that was Jupiter I'd seen?

"Tara?"

"Mm."

"You don't think that was Earth?"

"Well, I hope not. Don't you?"

"I guess so."

"Even if it is, it doesn't really matter. How much time did you count off?"

"It didn't seem like that much."

She stretched and picked herself up off the bed. "I'm hungry. Italian?"

"Mexican. And margaritas."

"Yeah. Let's have a toast."

And she smiled the most beautiful smile in the world. She is my starry-eyed love, until the end of the universe.

 

9 comments:

Pat Paulk said...

I remember days like that, a few years ago. True or fiction, very well written!!

simpleton said...

I love this.

JaneDoughnut said...

Thank you!

The universe my characters live in is getting bigger and bigger. Paul and I are in the process of weaving that universe into a more cohesive project - I hope y'all will stick around to see what we come up with.

simpleton said...

I'm going to.

Kevan said...

I saw the future tonight. It was more Saturn-like, with rings. I had the munchies bad, too. :)

Andrea said...

I can't say I've had an experience quite like that, but as said before very well written. :o)

ARAJAY said...

Excellent. Where a lot of your writing could be considered "fiction," I feel this short (with light polish) could be considered "literature."

Tisha! said...

Hey darling guess who is going to be on My Point Radio tomorrow? Me! Can't believe it...it's during your work hours I am sure but I put the details on my blog and hope that you can make it! Hugz

Jean-Luc Picard said...

It sounds like some Betazoid concoction you wrre trying.