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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

P is for PEACE and WEP


"They dress the wound of my people 
as though it were not serious. 
'Peace, peace,' they say, 
when there is no peace." 
- Jeremiah

Where Can You Find Peace
In A Dark World?

I will let my avatar, Samuel McCord, answer that question from a bit of French Quarter Nocturne.

 His arch-nemesis, DayStar, has come for him in his darkened club, Meilori's.

Not just to kill him but to destroy what little remains of his soul. 

 (564 words)

Out of the blackness a voice, like the tolling of bronze bells far off in the desert, spoke, "You have interfered one time too many."

"Been said before."

"Not by me."

The half-moon peeked out from behind a cloud and for a flicker of an instant I caught two gray eyes studying me.   

Deep, gray eyes that seemed to look inward as well as outward.  Eyes that appeared to burn with cold fires. 

The darkness grew denser around me.  
 "I went to some effort to bring Katrina to New Orleans only to veer away, building up hopes of escape, and then have my carefully constructed levees collapse in the fashion I wished.  Such despair and death.  It was delightful."
DayStar took two steps towards me.  "But then, you had to interfere."
He sat down in the plush leather chair opposite me and neatly arranged his clothes.
"Armani if you are wondering, talking monkey."
"Only the very best for the very worst."
He laughed as if I mattered.  I smiled back as if I gave a damn.  We both weren't fooled.
  I asked, "Don't you have a government to topple, a politician to corrupt?"
"All in good time, Samuel.  All in good time.  In fact, I am having a marvelous time right now with the opportunities still afforded me by Katrina.   
Whispers to bruised egos to insure one agency will ignore another.  Stroking of inflamed pride to keep insufficient mouths from asking for help until it is too late.  Suggesting of shallow men for pivotal positions.   
All so simple, so enjoyable, so effective.  Government agencies are such great fun to play like puppets.  And the nature of human nature makes it laughingly easy."

His voice lowered until I had to strain to hear it.  "And the helpless die."
I barely made out the flutter of his long fingers.  A dim flicker of images swirled before my eyes.  An old woman clutching a small child as the rising waters threatened to swallow them.  A faint mewing came from the young girl.
"G-Grandma, I'm ... I'm scared.  Awful sc-scared."
"There, there, honey.  I'm right here.  I got you safe in my arms."
I watched the woman hug her granddaughter as the waters steadily rose, saw the shivering girl clutch back as if onto a lifeline.   My fingers became fists in the effort it took me to keep on watching as the dark waters crept up their chests, nibbled at their chins. 
I forced myself to keep on watching their thrashing about as the waters choked them, then smothered them to finally rise to the ceiling.  It took them much too long to finally die.  I felt DayStar's eyes on me. 
I ignored him.  All I seemed able to see was the trail of bubbles shorten, then stop as their bodies slowly became loose and limp.  But somehow the grandmother's arms still held onto the small girl.  All became black once more.  And DayStar laughed as if at the funniest joke in the world.
"Tell me, Samuel, where was your invisible man in the sky in all that?"
His question echoed my own.  But I would be damned if I gave him the satisfaction of admitting it.  I reached into the bruised shadows of my mind for a truth I could say with a straight face and forced my throat to work. 
"In the arms of that grandmother." 

Where Is Peace In This Dark World?

In The Arms of Love That Refuse to Let Go.





25 comments:

  1. Roland, I love the quote from the Bible: 'Peace, peace,' they say,
    when there is no peace." So true. Not a lot of peace around the world at the mo', is there? Nice touch with the corruption of governments and politicians which is all around us. That was a tragic image of the grandmother and grand-daughter drowning...but a beautiful image of God being in the loving arms.

    A great entry for WEP's Peace and Love. Thank you.

    Denise :-)

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    1. Thanks so much for the kind words, Denise. I liked your riveting entry as well! :-)

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  2. Her grand-daughter knew that there was safety in those loving arms. Even to the end. Safety and comfort.

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    1. Sometimes knowing we are wrapped in loving arms can make even the darkest moments brighter.

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  3. So hopeless, Roland, so sad and hopeless. For an unbeliever like me, this is unbearable. I guess that's why I don't read horror or tragedy. I want hope and happy ending in fiction, I really do. I'm so sorry for them all: Samuel and that grandma and her little granddaughter. Maybe that vision was false? Maybe they did get rescued, but the villain just wants to torment Samuel? Yes, that would be a much better story.

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    1. All stories, if continued far enough, end in death, and he is no true story teller who would keep that from you.

      Yet, love can make that end better for its embracing arms -- at least I am sentimental enough to believe that.

      Like you, I do not like sad endings in fiction -- there is a happy ending in my novel later on for the young girl and her grandmother. :-)

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  4. Hi Roland - such a dreadful outcome ... and to watch - not sure what I'd do ... but not watch. Desperate to think about - so sadly matched by so many souls suffering today around the world ... it is difficult to relate to, when one sits at a computer responding to posts, or comments ... and living a life. Peace where is peace - I hope Love will come to the fore by all men and amongst all peoples ...cheers Hilary

    http://positiveletters.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/peace-and-love-blog-hop-write-edit.html

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    1. Poor Sam could only watch and by watching lend compassion to an event already happened by refusing to turn away.

      Peace is a precious commodity in this troubled world for sure.

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  5. I love the way you point out the inconsistencies and the pain that has momentarily taken over and stopped people from thinking, and I love the book of Jeremiah.
    Excellent.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia

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    1. Poor Jeremiah had to live out God's lessons to His People - I guess each of us lives out God's lessons to those around us. Thanks for the kind words! :-)

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  6. 'In the arms of the grandmother.' That was just beautiful. The peace and love that a grandparent's arms provide are equalled by no other, not even parents.

    The Bible verse sums up my world in a way that saddens me. Thank you for a great, thought provoking read, as always.

    Best wishes,
    Nilanjana.

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    1. Nilanjana, may your world brighten, if only a little, in the days to come. :-) And yes, grandparents have matured enough to be more constant in their love usually.

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  7. Love that last line. Beautiful. Love the standoff too. Awesome characters.

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    1. I worked hard on that last line to make it authentic and true. Samuel and DayStar are my Holmes and Moriarty on a cosmic scale. :-)

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  8. Einstein presented such a profound simple truth.

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    1. Living under the Nazis lent him dark, sad wisdom I believe. :-(

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  9. What would have happened had death been dressed as a beautiful angel instead of a skeleton in black. We fear the journey, why? I look forward to it, although judgement, not so much!
    Beautifully done! Thank you!

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    1. It's the pain of transition that concerns me! Ouch!

      In my novels, the Angel of Death is a woman, her beauty a strange and terrible aspect.

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  10. Another poignant story, Roland. Beautifully written, this leaves the reader wondering at the truth in your words. I loved it.
    Nancy

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    1. Thank you so much, Nancy. I tried to evoke a sense of dark reality in this fantasy of mine. Glad you liked it. :-)

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  11. Love how you answered with hope, in the grandmothers clutching arms. Peace seems an impossible concept in today's world.

    We find hope where we can.

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    1. Thanks, Donna. There seems to be no sure road to peace in this troubled world -- only hearts that still cling to hope, right? :-)

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  12. Such a sad piece, and beautifully written. I hope he doesn't lose faith!

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    1. Finding the starving, wounded survivors of Auschwitz delivered a fatal wound to his faith. Finding the scrappy son he never knew he had restored it.

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  13. We saw what peace and love the rescue of New Orleans took, it was money, greed and indecision. It also took the government much too long to react. Neat way to show despair and hope, squashed by the likes of Daystar.

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