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Saturday, May 27, 2006

elaina! check out my pseudonym!

Here's the key to destroying any and all action on one's blog: post a school project. Give yourself a pseudonym so everyone thinks it was written by someone else. Why should they comment? Really, would you? Would I?
Maybe, if I thought you needed the encouragement.
Nevertheless:

Every sinew in his face was taut with fear. His nerves spasmed beneath a frail coverlet of skin, like a rippling curtain hiding a brood of anxious actors.
There was no hiding it--Matthew was afraid of flying. The stewardesses passed Matthew and smothered him with sublime smiles. Matthew could not respond to this sympathy, except with a sound that barely escaped his throat, and perished beating against clenched teeth.
These gestures of compassion did not go unrecognized, however. Sean, who sat up straight in his chair and assumed the airs of a grown-up, nodded pleasantly toward the stewardesses who met Matthew's glazed eyes with concerned looks. Other passengers noticed Matthew and nudged their companions. Our token psycho-phobe, their glances advertised. To these, Sean mustered a dismissive smile, as if to say "Don't worry, citizens, he's under my expert care."
"Dad," He said, in a voice that was as fluffy as a cloud of calm.
"Yes, son." Matthew croaked. His fingers twitched with the extra effort.
"I'm scared of flying." He said dramatically.
"Don't be, son. There's nothing to be worried about." Matthew said, trying on a smile that was quickly crushed under the weight of his frightened eyes.
"Just the same," said Sean. "Can we ask God for a sign that we'll be alright all the way up there in the sky?"
Matthew looked as though he fully intended to ignore Sean's plea.
"I mean--" Sean cleared his throat meaningfully. "If God told us we'd be okay, I'd believe him."
Matthew tried the smile a second time. It failed more miserably. A droplet of sweat followed a curvy path into the corner of his mouth.
"Sure. You do that." He gripped his son's hand and meant to shake it reassuringly, but both hands landed on the arm rest, where Sean's remained entraped in Matthew's vice.
"Dear God," Sean started praying, suddenly losing his facade of terror that had been so convincing a moment before. "Please send us something nice to let us know that the sky is safe for us today. Send us..." He pondered. "A rainbow."
"Son," Matthew jerked his head, as if to dislodge the thought that tormented him. "It's dark outside. Rainbows need light to exist."
Sean raised his eyebrows meaningfully, and nodded slowly. His hand remained enveloped in his father's mammoth of trembling anxiety.

I ran to greet them at the airport. Matthew was tired, his eyes were blank, and his forehead glistened with beads of sweat.
"Daddy looks like he's been fighting a war." I joked to Sean, as he ran into my arms. Matthew didn't seem to care for my joke, and Sean kindly pretended not to have understood it.
"Mommy, mommy, you'll never guess what was in the sky tonight. Tell her, daddy."
"You tell me, pumpkin. What was in the sky?"
"A rainbow. It was too dark to see it, but I know it was there. And the best thing about it," He said in a pristine whisper. "Was that it was sent from God, just for us. And God made it even without light."
--Grace Webber

4 comments:

Blogger Joan said...

what's a, "pseudonym"?

5/28/2006 1:35 PM  
Anonymous James said...

A pen name.

5/28/2006 10:37 PM  
Blogger Warthogs Unite said...

OH OH OH!!!
How do you say that word?
We were stuck on that for HOURS!

6/17/2006 8:35 PM  
Blogger Florence said...

su-dun-im...su-don-im.
something like that.

6/17/2006 10:34 PM  

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