IRIN de SADE











 

stars2

Omg..its full of stars!!!

Mrs. Holden walked into her elder son’s room and sighed. Books and clothes were strewn all over. His favourite baseball player stared at her out of lifesize posters pinned to the walls. Not an inch of those walls could be seen. All of it was covered in graffiti,posters and post-its displaying glimpses of a 20-year-old’s life. In the middle of the room a bunk bed graced the thundering chaos. A music player blared the guitar riffs of “Alice in Chains” by the window. Agnes Holden whispered a silent prayer for her neighbours. She picked her way gingerly around the flotsam and jetsam on the floor to reach the bed and the sprawled form on it.

 

Darien Holden was lying on his bed oblivious to the world and its sufferings for the moment-he was safely in the arms of deep slumber. His mother shook him rudely awake.

“Mmm…unhh…” mumbled Darien, his verbal abilities somewhat challenged by sleep.

“wake up Darry, Its your brother’s birthday. We have to do something nice for him. We must get out the tables and clean the dining hall. You also need to go get the cake and decorations.” said Mrs Holden shaking her son.

“Mum, it’s only dawn and we have all day. Besides I doubt Edwin really wants a birthday party, he grew out of those the day he was born!” Darien chuckled.

His mother made to hit him and he ducked crying, “Okay okay, I will get up. But its dawn Ma and you’re a wicked slavedriver.”

“Darien Holden,” admonished his mother,”12 noon is not dawn for normal humans. So get out of bed and stop procrastinating.”

Agnes heard her younger son calling her from his room on the other side of the house. She hurried out of the room. She hoped he was fine. She constantly worried about him. The weather was also treacherous and she was afraid he would catch the deadly flu. But she had promised him she would take him outside on his birthday and so she would. But only after she’d swathed him in enough warm clothes to muffle his protests..she smiled.

Edwin was sitting beside his windowsill;his customary position and watching the children ice skate on the frozen pool behind his house. Or so his mother thought. He was actually doing what every boy his age did, watching a cute girl. This was also customary. She skated beautifully and it was his life’s mission to sketch her one day. Kind of difficult if  the girl in question happened to be his brother’s bestfriend-almost-girlfriend. She was coming for his birthday today and he was excited though his good sense told him he should not be. His mother entered the room,crossed over to him and kissed his brow.

“happy birthday darling.”

“Thanks Ma, am I going outside today?” enquired Edwin his face full of barely concealed enthusiasm.

“Yes sweet we are. But you have to cover up well.”Said  Mrs. Holden and was immediately met with a slew of protests which she fielded with the ease that only mothers possess. Saying that she left to get his warm clothes. His attendent lurked around his door. Edwin hated having that guy around and was always glad when his mother gave him a day off, or when he would leave. His mother brought his clothes and the attendent helped him out of the wheelchair and into the layers of clothing which his mother had conjured effortlessly.

“Mum why do I have to be mummified? (no pun intended Ma.)” complained Edwin.

“The doctor has said to keep you warm and it doesnt hurt to be careful.” quipped his mum.

“Careful is he who wishes to live life like a puppet.” came back Edwin.

His mother looked at him,exasperated. She never knew what to make of the serendipitous comments her son was given to making suddenly. “you’re young,” she said,”at least try to pretend like it.” Edwin laughed and stared at his mother as if she had made a blasphemous comment. “Lets go out Ma.” he said.

She took hold of his chair and without further ado wheeled him out of his surreal mini-universe into our narrow two dimensional world.

Edwin looked at the pretty picture that Nature had painted with every color that could be perceived by blending the seven rays of the sunbeams. The trees stood bare and beckoned to haunted souls with their barren arms. Snow,pure and white, covered the musty dirt and grime of human existence making life seem pristine to behold. Chickadee flew in circles above the translucent mirror of the frozen pool. Shimmering images of the young happy skaters adorned the glassy surface. Every chord in every being resonated with the notes of cool winds and humming blizzards. Edwin turned his face up to the skies perfect except where they were broken by angry faces of floating clouds. A lone beam illuminated a lone squirrel on the ground who had not quite mastered hibernation. Edwin laughed with joy that his body could barely contain. He held his hands up and closing his eyes, pictured himself running along with the other children on the fluffy snow, occasionally stopping to pick up fistfuls of white fluff to throw at unsuspecting strangers. In his mind’s eye images whirled. He was jumping in the snow like a jack-in -the-box;he was skating at high speed holding hands with his girl;he was feeding nuts to the birds;he was playing volleyball with his neighbors;he was free;he was exhilarated.

The world was good. In his imagination he had done everything that any child,adult,man,woman,human could imagine of in each of those capacities. His window was his Stargate,his portal. He had travelled deserts on the backs of lofty camels,ridden horses at equestrian championships, fenced with gladiators, walked on the moon,painted the Mona Lisa……

Edwin looked at his world and overlaid his own imaginations on it. The superimposed image filled him with a sense of completion and wonder and awe that he aptly expressed by saying out loud,

“My God,it’s full of stars!”

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