Shadows of autumn leaves spread across the stained glass windows like little black ink prints on a concrete rainbow. They tremble ever so slightly in the gentle afternoon breeze and a serene calm fills the chapel.
I’ve dreamt of this moment a thousand, million times. The moment where your bright hazel eyes twinkle with joy and an uncontrollable smile breaks across your lips when you see me, dressed in white. Soft music will play as I walk down the aisle, one step at a time. My father’s smile shall be a contradiction of happiness, sadness, and pride. Thank you, I will whisper when he leads me, and when the ring is slipped onto my finger.
But alas, the bride is not me.
My fingers tap lightly onto the piano keys. Their touch is smooth and cool unlike yours, hot and rough. My heart breaks as I play the tune to your wedding, a soft, gentle melody. Tears brim at the edge of my eyes as I watch my love move farther and farther from me.
The salty winds brush through your bright golden locks.
You eyes are emeralds, sharp against your sun-kissed skin. Such otherworldly beauty pulls me forward, one step at a time. My breath hitches. A hint of a smile flutters across your cheeks.
Come, you beckon.
My heart wrenches in delight as it follows that sweet, heavenly voice all too willingly. You are enthroned upon an uneven rock, and a long white dress flows over your figure as I stare, open-mouthed;
Alas! Tis’ the mermaid of bard’s tale!
Flirtatious laughter escapes your lips as you meet my gaze. I look away shyly, embarrassed by my mortality. Come, you beckon, and a loving kiss is placed upon the cool back of your hand. Your deep green eyes are the last thing
I remember as I sink into
I don’t care.
You can try your best and tear me apart.
The pieces of my heart will paint the skies like the dazzling stars,
and when the sun rises, it will be a
The tears running down my cheeks will become a silver river
that flows through the realms of Dor-lómin. There, elven songs will chime and soothe my fatigued mind and mend
my broken, faithless heart.
“Hē nīvu, ēḷuva.”
I felt a rough prod against my back as I winced slightly. Where was I? I looked around frantically as I tried to build a quick mental picture of my surroundings.
Nothing. Blackness. Just pure blackness, everywhere.
“Nīvu sumāru avivēki huḍugi calisuva nillisalu, mattu calisuva paḍeyuvudu.”
Okay, whoever they were, they didn’t speak English.
I felt a rough tug as I was hauled upwards, onto my feet. I stumbled slightly at the uneven ground below me as I was pushed forward. Distant laughter echoed up ahead, where a tiny speck of light shone brightly. Was that the exit? Hope filled my chest as I struggled to stop myself from running . A rough sigh sounded beside me, and I gasped in surprise as I felt a large hand caressing my back. Goosebumps ran all over my skin as a wave of nausea washed over me. Where does he think he’s touching? I trembled, panic-stricken. Wherever they’re taking me, it’s not a good place.
“Nīvu sākaṣṭu halavāru mārāṭa hōgi nīvu!” Deep, throaty laughter sounded all around. What were they saying? What language were they speaking in? Where was I? Why am I here? Where were they bringing me? Uncertainty and fear engulfed me. I breathed heavily and my heart raced rapidly against my ribcage as blood pounded loudly in my ears.
Who were they—
That’s what you do best. One look through your straight lashes and I’m down on the floor.
You would tell me what I couldn’t do, how futile my efforts were. Your hits were always hard across my cheek, the shackles tight around my ankles. But
guess what? There’s a fifty in the ashtray
for your car that I’m driving down the highway.
Your gurgling laugh echoes in the hallway and your pattering footsteps follow next.They fall gently upon the wooden floorboards, like the soft drizzling rain. You laugh, and a smile tugs at the ends of my lips.
Mambu was your first attempt at calling me Mama. You got it right eventually, which made me feel bittersweet. Mambu will always, secretly, be my favorite word.
For you, learning the alphabet came as naturally as crawling. On the first day you were starting with Z; the very next day, you had it all down. Me and Dad thought you were an alphabet prodigy!
Your smile is like the sun, warm and bright. It is the best remedy for anything. Even if you did break my favorite porcelain flower pot. One smile and I decided I didn’t quite like it as much anymore.
“I’m leaving, Mom.”
The finality and determination in your voice squeezed my heart as hot tears rolled down my cheeks. We knew this day would come, a day when you went out to the world and learnt how to fend for yourself. A day when our little one would grow up and gain the independence we always hoped you would. But it was all too fast. How had all these years passed by in a blink of an eye?
“Okay,” my voice shook as the words formed in my mouth. It took all the courage and strength I had to keep my composure. I wanted to say no, you aren’t going anywhere; I wanted to keep you safe and sound for as long as I could.
“I love you Mom.”
I know little one, I love you too.
Your eyelids flutter and I am trapped by that bright hazel gaze. I freeze, like a deer caught in headlights.
They are beautiful.
They twinkle whenever there’s a laugh. It’s like an addiction, and I can’t seem to look away. My world swerves and bewitched, I watch as it plays in slow-motion.
My heart skips a beat too many as I fall,
slowly, into oblivion.