A essay inspired from a photograph taken of a lost boy with a simple daydream.
|This story is about a boy, a lost boy. This boy sits, quietly sobbing on a familiar curb. In back of him is a familiar fence that separates him from his most intimate dreams. His red colored head is between his knees and his dirt-smeared arms hug them close to his chest. Safety. Protection.
It is always the same dream. These dreams are simple, but even the most simplest things can be extremely complex.
They involve happiness and sunshine; and distinct, deep laugh lines on a shining, beautiful woman’s face. This woman always wears the same dress, a flowing, aqua colored dress.
This woman is not of this world. Her face is indescribable, her body, incomparable, and her dress unmatchable. What makes her dress so transcendent is the earth and the millions of people in it are patterned and painted gracefully and perfectly on it. Every single person on her dress moves when she moves; they look like mini movies covering every area in her dress. It's as if she is supreme over everything.
As the dream progresses the dress moves gently to the light breeze and the people on it look like they are dancing. She calmly glances down at them, her pink full lips spread with a smile. The dress flows like a river to the breeze, gracefully grazing her perfectly molded white ankles. Now the distinct people look like they are swimming.
In between his knees the small boy gives a playful, boyish grin amidst his tears as he lets his imagination control the daydream. The beautiful lady lifts her arms above her head and opens and closes her fists as if to grasp the wind, and the emotion it erupts in the abyss of her heart. The warm, loving wind travels from inside the woman’s heart to the boy’s. It stays in the boy's heart, melting away the sorrow, the pain, the part of the boy that is lost.
The tears cease from spilling down his cheeks. Simultaneously and slowly he imitates the lady and lifts both arms above his head. His hands reach up to the sky opening and closing. His eyes are closed, still in the dream. He sees the lady opening and clenching her fists; he copies.
The woman looks up towards the sky, her eyelids open like a curtain revealing sparkling hazel colored eyes. These eyes are not from this world. The lady is not from this world.
The boy lifts his head up; eyes remain close, as he continues to escape cold and dreary reality. Her eyes produce swirly patterns of colors from gold to lime green to aqua blue to blood red to an earthy brown. She blinks again, her eyes morphing into the lightest blue imaginable. The color transforms into real salt-water tears and they roll down her red cheeks and soft, pink lips. The tears flow like a waterfall down her arms, her thighs, her calves, and her ankles. Finally at the bottom of her feet they collect into a puddle and travel up the sides of her body. The millions of little tears frame her, like she is the picture. They elevate her earthy brown hair so that it is floating around her head.
She blinks once more, however instead of changing colors there lay a little boy in her eyes. The little boy’s hair is red-orange with earthy brown stripes coming from his spine. His body is sparkling clean and his eyes are dry. No frown lines have formed but instead a huge smile rests naturally across his face. The boy is happy. He is laughing. His laugh is as clear as a bell, as deep as the ocean, and as happy as a songbird.
Outside the dream the boy stands on the curb, places his arms gently on either side of him and with eyes close his brow furrows and he licks his cracked, bleeding lips. No matter how many times he dreams this dream, this part always puzzles him; because the little boy in the lady’s eyes looks so familiar.
He always feels extremely close to him, like they share a bond stronger and tighter than anything of this world. The little boy stops laughing, and the only thing heard following that was his breathing. His chest goes up and down and his breathing sounds so soft yet so strong, like a calm ocean wave hitting the sand. His breathing is music. There’s a rhythm to it. The little boy’s breathing escalates and grows louder and stronger and higher and faster! The loud sound completely fills the lost boy's ears and he innocently covers them with his hand grimacing. Suddenly the woman shuts her eyes...the little boy vanishes. She places two fingertips tenderly on her eyelids like she is trying to touch that boy deep in her eyes. Gently, she moves her pointer fingers in circular motions.
The boy with eyes closed can feel soft hands caressing his cheeks and his arms. The touch is as soft as a wishing weed. He can feel the woman’s motherly floating arms wrap around his scrawny shoulders. She feels like a cloud, the sun, and the ocean mixed together. Then back inside the dream, she places her arms gracefully on either side of her and walks backwards. Elegantly. Slowly. Like she is walking through a memory, every step is a new sensation, a new feeling, a new thought, a new emotion. She keeps walking backwards for hours, it feels, fading away. Finally, she fades into nothing.
She has walked out of his mind.
The loneliness and desperation to get her back always follows her disappearance. He longs to see her face, feel her touch, hear that little boy's laugh, and stare into her multi-colored eyes. The lost boy stays standing. He reluctantly opens his eyes. They are hazel. They are sad and downtrodden as if they have walked for thousands of miles, and have seen so many despairing incidents.
The boy turns around and walks slowly towards the fence. He puts his fingers through the fence; his eyes can be seen through two of the holes. He stares longingly through them. His dreams and everything he desires is through those diamond shaped hollows. He has only to break free of his illusions and take what should be his. However, he doesn’t. He would prefer to be in a dream than actually living. All of a sudden his face contorts with pain. Glancing down he sees the familiar rusty nail that always burrows deeper in the same spot on his shin. Ignoring it, he sits back down on the curb.
A wishing weed stands short and unnoticed next to him. The breeze makes it sway side to side, as if it is waving to him; he plucks it and looks at it for a moment with a blank expression. Then he gently strokes his face with the bushy head of the wishing weed. He remembers the woman's soft, cloud-like touch. Finally he stops caressing his face with the weed and looks at it again. Closing his eyes he makes a wish. A wish so simple yet so powerful. A wish that would make the ignorant and the foolish laugh, but the wise and kind understand. As he sits there wishing, tears gather in his eyes and swim down his cheeks. Aggressively he breathes in as much air as he can, making his whole body arch back, and blows as hard and strong as he can on the little wishing weed. Afraid to look at it (fearing that all the seeds haven't been carried by his blow) he opens one eye and peeks. Every single last seed had left the stem. He doesn't smile. He just watches the seeds being carried by the wind and wishes he was one of the seeds. How simple life would be to just let the wind carry you, to fall where you will fall, to have no need and desire to have control over your life. He places his bright orange colored head between his knees and encases his arms around his legs. He grips the rest of the wishing weed tightly in a clenched fist and sobs quietly as he dreams.
His dream is filled with memory, mystery, simplicity, complexity, happiness, laughter, sunshine, and familiar faces. He will one day live his dream, but for now his dream is who he was,who he is, and who he will become. One day nothing, including that fence, will block him from getting his dream. But until then the only thing that will wash away his pain, his sorrow, his grime- stained body is the lightest blue-colored tear streaming from his eyes. No noise just tears and dreams. For even the simplest thing can be the most complex thing in the world.
This story is about a boy, a lost boy, a boy who will find his way.
The picture that inspired me= file://localhost/Users/pearlscalzo/Pictures/iPhoto%20Library/Masters/2012/03/25/20120325-144713/Screen%20shot%202012-03-25%20at%202.32.59%20PM.png