A BLUE JAY'S TRIP

WHAT IT IS

Her manner of dress was unique and intentional, it belonged to a different era, perhaps a half a century ago when paisleys and tie-dyes were common among women of her age. Auburn hair, long, frizzy and awash in split ends cascaded over her shoulders, covered her back and danced around her thighs. Her walk was slow and deliberate, no bounce in her step, no faulter in her direction.

For as long as he could remember, Miller’s recurring dream would play over night after night, to the point where he actually relished in the anticipation of another night’s sleep and another encounter with his serial vision. It even got to the point where Miller believed he could induce the dream in the moments before sleep arrived. His heart pounding run through the forest saw ghosts and phantoms closing in on him as he reached a steep gorge with menacing waters rushing below him. On the other side, a woman watched a blue jay, brilliant yellow leaves swayed in the breeze as she encouraged him to jump the gorge to her side. He never could…a distance too far.

Miller reached inside his breast pocket and fingered the soft Strathmore envelope. For the first time in his life the dream had changed, as had his trajectory. As the women drew near, he recognized her from a lifetime of encounters, and he handed over the envelope.

WHAT IT IS NOT

His head cocked in that curious way monocular creatures do when they survey their surroundings. The blue jay’s landing was unplanned, a massive down draft grounded thousands of birds on this day, but his descent and subsequent landing could not have left him in a bleaker place. The tree he was perched on was dead, the water below him dank and muddy with a colorful oily scum glistening on the surface. He saw no other creatures, just debris shifting endlessly in the strong wind, disturbed occasionally by erratic dust devils on their way to collect what they were owed. The moral authorities who created this oasis must have had a special connection with the synapses that fired off inside their collective brains bringing them together in a dark orgy where they stood shoulder to shoulder with a god of their choosing. A heritage of annihilation doesn’t disappear easily, scars of the billionaires wrestle the victims into an eternity of promises and lies where the pressure of deceit, overtime, convinces the victims that fault and blame are inconsequential. It’s a soft landing for the billionaires, and they of course embrace it, live for it…to the point where they sit at the right hand of what once was a moral compass and watch the dial spin wildly in all directions. A heritage of annihilation doesn’t disappear easily, but when the blue jay blinked once either he or the landscape vanished.

Author: whatitiswhatitisnot

Member of Camerauthor, a cooperative that writes on the blog What It Is/What It is not. Our membership includes a fantasy writer, a general fiction writer (Ellie) and two amateur photographers. All photos on the blog belong to Camerauthor.

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