Friday, March 16, 2012


Outside the sun is so bright it nearly blacks out the interior of the room.  The faded wallpaper surrounding the window is nothing more than a black box from which the light emerges.  A blinding green coming from every corner of the world as new life emerges again.  It’s so overwhelming he can’t see the world through the color.  There is nothing but the green burning into his eyes, enveloping him in a cocoon of greedy weeds swallowing his body completely. 

Outside fresh stalks are pushing their way up through the ground.  Slowly climbing through a thick weave of clay, top soil, dead leaves and lush weed cover until they finally break free to the air and sunlight they thirst.  He can feel the light warming his skin.  Eventually, a sheen of sweat will begin to emerge from his pores as he traces the residue of long, hard days working out in the field pushing plows through red soil in the oppressive heat.  He can sense it the way that arthritics sense rain.  A dull pain in his muscles promising hours spent kneeling in a garden combing through the moist earth planting seedlings and staking budding plants.  His body aches for it- a hunger in his bones.

Outside the wind is full and ripe, almost like it’d been blown in from off shore carrying the scent of salt water and flotsam.  He hears it beating against the window and can almost taste the scent.  If he focuses he can smell the entire world out there.  Every particle flooding his nose with scents that bring back memories of landscapes so lush he can barely breath through the aroma.  They say that emotion is more deeply rooted in olfactory stimulus than any other sense and he can feel the truth of that now.  His eyes water with the deluge of feelings that pour over him.

Outside there is a pulse beating heavily as the world moves.  He can hear it thumping against his eardrums and his body responds to it violently.  The sound of his heart, of his blood flowing through his veins, his breath moving through his lungs, his muscles stretching all fall in line with the rhythm.  Every molecule in his body is one with that sound and it moves him like the tempo of a song so old he can’t remember its origin.

Outside it is spring and he knows it.  He knows it in a way that he is not capable knowing without eyes or skin or a nose or ears with which to connect to it.  He knows it on a level that transcends the lifeless body that cages him. 

As they turn off the machines whose incessant beeping keep his heart beating at an artificial rhythm the sound of the outside world becomes more real.  As the sterile, blank interior retreats from his nostrils he can smell the soil and the sea.  As the tubes that pump air into his lungs slow he can breathe the air outside.  As the feel of the starched cloth evaporates he can feel the wind and the sun and the rain.  As the sight of people around him crying and talking of loss and endings fades away into the green he can see the shores and fields beyond the window.  An excitement expands beyond the boundaries of the physical form that once jailed him.  Because today, he is finally going outside.


  1. Some tantalizing descriptions, Bev, and the repetition of "Outside" as an intro grew on me by the middle. Good work!

  2. Beautifully written piece of fiction.

  3. Hi Beverly - I liked this - very poetic - particularly the little things like the repetition of 'outside' (I tend to do things like that too sometimes). And needless to say I felt glad for the poor man that he found peace - outside.


Thank you for your comment! I will love it and hug it and pet it and call it George. Or, you know, just read and reply to it. But still- you rock!