We found there to be an unlimited amount of time and consideration put into their dilemma. The tribespeople talked amongst themselves in whatever language it was, shook their spears and shared some strange, green smoke emitting pipe. After two or three hours, they came to a decision: They ate us.
Lost in a swirl of endless beginnings, we closed our eyes and prayed.
“Hold on!” cried Pete.
Around and around, we span.
“This is it!” bellowed Maureen.
With pops as of a punctured bubbles, we all tumbled onto the carpet.
“Where’ve you been this time?” asked mum.
“Everywhere,” we laughed.
Balancing we trek
Across ancient dragon’s teeth
Waiting for his bite
We were tired, so tired. The trip by train across two continents and seventeen nations had worn at our souls if not our eyes. Each new day had offered experience, adventure, and a test of not falling asleep. Yet in all those hours, those moments in time, the one view I’d savoured most was the last. Home was a sight for sore eyes and the one place to rest them. Home was a beginning, an end and everything in-between.
The road coughed up dust like a cat a hairball, neither pleasant and both lasting too long. I'd traveled the same baked mud for ten days on an incline that wore at the soul. When the horizon fell away, however, a new land unrolling like a tapestry, I remembered why.
Every boat had a captain, ours just happened to surf stars. Instead of water, he had the universal currents of space, riding the night in endless gravitational waves. We had no idea how he knew where to head, (it all looked the same to us,) but he did.
One day, or night, or evening, it was so hard to tell, I took a once around the deck. Pointing at comets was a hobby I’d procured; I never dreamt I’d see new life instead. But I did. How I did!
The sun coalesced from vermillion dust cast amongst the star stuff. Right there before my eyes, it sprung into blazing life. I gasped. Who wouldn’t have?
When I felt a tap on my shoulder, I almost jumped overboard, only the ship’s crystal balustrade held me back.
“What do you think, son?”
It was the captain, a strange glint in his ageless eyes.
“It’s the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen,” I said. And it was.
“Life,” he said almost to himself, “doesn’t get any better than this.”
“But don’t you see such things every trip?” I blurted.
“Yes,” he replied and slowly walked away.
When we arrived, they’d all gone.
It doesn't matter how many pairs of boots you wear, the miles they've covered, what they've seen, they'll never replace a pair of slippers by your own door. It was a simple detail, lesson learned, but learn it I did. I just wish you'd been there to pass me them.
“I’ve lost my boat.”
“It sailed away.”
“Did someone steal it?”
“Yes. They jumped in and drifted off into the horizon.”
“I’m so sorry. Would you like a lift off this island?”
“No, thank you.”
“That was the reason I stole the boat in the first place.”
“I’m chasing the Summer.”
“But it’s Winter?”
“Gotta be Summer somewhere.”
He leapt on his Hog.
“No plan, then?”
“Never coming back?”
“Not even when Summer returns?”
He lowered his shades.
“Summer ain’t ever returning, not here.”
He left in a cloud of dust; it never settled.