• J.

Colorless Sea

Updated: Mar 21

On this squared cornered cargo ship, another slave was killed by the holders. An accident. No one will say how awful or how gruesome. They will not say how he held so much life brewing within his raw heart. There won’t be any articles, no papers with details threaded in truth. There will be no funeral. No weeping families, no weeping friends, no weeping. There will be no clamoring to his wife—who’s name hardly thickens their arteries with guilt.

There are no promises for the children, who will grow without him. No clasping of fingers or simple prayers lifted to God. He will not become a memory, no, not even blurred splotches in their mind to bring a thin sadness. Nothing to remind that his life was more than a crisp stem, lying dotingly upon the grass, waiting to sink or for it’s inevitable end. He owns no more good times when he drank too much. Not even memories of when he tore through meat and allowed the melodies of taste to fill his belly.

No one will miss him, too, and no one will remember him. His life was the sloshing of heavy mud sifted for the discovery of diamonds, but not the treasure itself. His life was not important, but held what could have been. His life united with other mud, then another, was swallowed into the pan. No one knew him, not even the parts that he shares. No one will remember him like newspaper wrapped loaves, fresh jars of lemonade on a hot day, or even penny films.

In the end, though many believe life truly starts when it ends, his life on his cargo left as quickly as it came. And I will write of him on this fragile, insubstantial page.

But I can’t.

I’m tied near the bow of the cargo ship. It is slicing through the waters, gnashing on high waves, throwing up plumes of grey. The air around is colored. The water around me is colored. And the sky, stretched above, is colored. But the holders, the reasons for us here, are passing around like shadows. Their faces are wet with the spit of the sea and windburned, their cheeks heavy with numbness.

They stare like I am the predator, breaths leaving in gasps like a prey. But I am trapped, tied down, helpless, yet I am the wild animal. I can feel the heat of the sun’s glaze on my neck. No matter how they try to paint me as the predator, the one needing saving, the one needing to be civilized, the one who needs to learn it; I know their hunger, their patience, their relentlessness. My heart beats ten times for every single beat of theirs. Though I am tired, there is a thought that prances in my mind, a single question on which one of us will be dead first.

But then I tell myself that death is a leisure. Any of us could go there tomorrow, a day from now, weeks from now, or even right now. No one wants to die though. Not because they truly fear death, for it is the friendliest of pals, but because we have grown too attached to this world.


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