Wings On Fire

January 21, 2013

Sense of Sight2

I’ve grown wings.
Enormous wings.
They’re rich and lustrous.
And if you stand just the right way in the sunlight, they shimmer.
They weren’t always this big.
It wasn’t long ago when I noticed them on my back.
Little buds bursting after a long winter.
Expanding in the summer heat.
When I turned my head to glance at them I noticed how extraordinary they were.
I was speechless.
I figured it’s not often you grow wings.
So I decided to look after them.
Like I’d never looked after anything before.
I brushed them, washed them, and nourished them with good food.
You should see their glow.
The other day I thought I’d try to fly.
I closed my eyes and took a running jump. And grazed my knees.
I wondered if their purpose might be ornamental.
Still, I decided I might not be ready.
I needed more rest.
Which lead to much napping.
Languidly lilting into the long afternoons.
One day I was lying there with my wings cloaked around me like armor.
It was then I saw something out of the corner my eye.
It was a bedraggled old black bird.
Its eyes were pits of sadness.
Its feathers all matted and torn.
Let it go! I heard a whisper.
So I opened the window as it flapped madly to be free.
Poor sad bird.
When I got up, a bolt of light surged through my spine.
I started making plans for my wings.
I started looking for opportunities.
For just the right thing.
And then, in an instant, doubt slithered in like a filthy thief.
What if people would laugh at my wings?
What if they just wouldn’t understand?
Would it be easier to blend in to the grey?
All the confidence my wings gave me began to liquefy.
I went out to the garden to breathe and flutter.
And there it was again. That black bird.
All shiny and clean now.
Feathers preened and crisp.
Eyes so glassy bright.
Hey little bird, I said. And it sang a beautiful tune.
Irridescently catching the air like sun drops.
It was crystal.
And just like that I heard the answer.
Bursting through like a gentle wave.
Softly nuzzling my disbelief.
All I needed was my own tune.
And I had one.
It had always been with me.
I just needed to sing it.
So I loaded my wings.
Their elliptical span stretched from tip to tip.
They were heavy, yet so courageous.
They were powerful, yet so graceful.
In the face of the sultry wind I opened my eyes.
And began to sing.
Not caring what anyone in the world thought of me.
I propelled myself through the garden.
My voice spiked higher and higher.
The beating of the bristly wings swiftly lifted me.
Like they were on fire.
The song soared through me.
Majestically ringing like a bell from my heart.
It was intoxicating.
Every note of it was exquisite.
Because it was mine.

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* Image: Annie Louise Swynnerton (Public Domain)

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