Thursday, May 3, 2012

Giant's Hammering Nails

Miss Lily woke with sunlight in her eyes and rain drops on her fingertips.  Bladed grass grazed her temples and a lump of dirt lodged itself between her second and third rib on her backside.  She sputtered a moment with the rain filling her mouth as she tried to breath, and she rolled on to her side and coughed.  The grass was a light green, fresh and new with spring, and a small, black beetle scurried up one grass blade toward the sunlight that shimmered in the rain.  She coughed again and then breath came sweet and with ease and she wondered why she laid on this grass with the sun-rain coming down.

She last remembered her home, with the windows wide open where a rustling breeze had blown in and stirred her papers on her desk.  She had been writing a story for her sister who laid still in bed.  A story about a girl who had long yellow pigtails and ate butterflies with toothpicks and liked to call angels fart-mouths.  The little girl wore purple and brown with pink polka-dots and had a dog named Larry.

The rain stopped now and the sun shone brighter and more heat radiated from its rays.  She rolled on her back and closed her eyes.  For some reason she wasn't eager to rise, to find out why she laid on spring grass with beetles walking. 

Miss Mary, her sister, wore a frown and played no more.  No, Miss Mary didn't have a chance of coming home or laying on grass with beetles.  But Miss Lily could lay here for her and sing tiny songs like fairies and pretend she had wings and could fly.  Fly, fly, fly away from here.

"Miss Lily, where are you?"

She opened her eyes and laid still like a fallen stick.  She knew the voice that called her, a kind voice from an evil woman.  The woman who hurt Miss Mary and wanted to hurt her.  Is that why she laid here, out of the house, far into the woods in a hidden meadow?

"Lily!  You show yourself right now!"  The woman shrieked and screamed, guttural like a wild wolf.

Miss Lily shivered and curled into a ball like the rollie-pollies her and Miss Mary liked to find in the dirt.  I could be a rollie-pollie, she thought.  I could scamper away on all my legs and live in the dirt and be free.  Miss Mary would want me to be free.

"Rollie-Pollie, Rollie-Pollie, I am you, you are me, we are free.  Rollie-Pollie, Rollie-Pollie, I am you, you are me, we are free," she said under her breath with her lips against the ground, again and again.

The evil woman's footsteps came louder and louder like giant's hammering nails and then she stood above her with hands on hips and cheeks red from movement.

"Lily, where are you?"

Miss Lily stayed ever so quiet.  She held her breath and knew the woman would see her at any moment, had to, for she laid at her feet, inches from the woman's boots.

But she didn't see her. 

The woman left, huffy and puffy, with hands still on her hips, shaking her head and yelling.  Why hadn't she seen her?  She was right here, in the bright sun.

She stared at her own hands which weren't hands any longer.  Rollie-Pollie she was and would be and so she was free.