Sunday, January 31, 2010

Water Flows At Different Levels

A short story that occurred to me the other night when sleep alluded me. I can't say that I wish to explain any of it. Take it however you wish.

Water Flows At Different Levels

You go awhile not noticing it. A long while and you don’t see it until one day you become aware of some sort of dam that is now one entire side of your house. Maybe not a proper dam, but there’s something there and it is definitely holding something back. You don’t tell anyone about this, you don’t alert anyone to it and since no one else is noticing it, there’s nothing to tell, really, is there?

There’s definitely a pressure behind it. You sense this though it isn’t transparent. You feel it. And one day there is a leak. A small one. You press a finger to it and a clear, cool liquid appears. You taste it and it tastes very good. It makes you smile. Over time the trickle becomes a leak. Soon you are filling a cup with the liquid and it quenches a thirst you had. But it’s getting on the floor. You can clean it easily. No one notices the puddle.

Some days it leaks badly and you’re annoyed. Other times the trickle doesn’t seem adequate. So you take an ice pick to it one day and a lot of the cool water comes out. Too much. You need to stop it before the excess moves from room to room, staining everything. Soon it will be noticeable and the source will be discovered. It is almost too much to clean up. You plug the gap and clean it. Your panic soon leaves you and calmness settles in. No one will notice. And the leak has been taken care of.

Time passes.

Fingers caress the dam. Sweet water trickles again. You touch your lips to it, remembering. Smiling. Wishing you could swim in it. Immerse yourself within.

You are still the only one who senses the pressure there and it doesn’t seem likely to burst, ruining your home. You’re quite certain it won’t. And this comforts you and saddens you both at the same time. But you’re glad it’s there.

At least you think it’s there. After tending to other things you are surprised to find it has vanished. You had come to take the dam as a given, its presence always there to slake your thirst as you wished. Where would it go, after all? You search, fingers sliding over cabinets, appliances, and a wall, but there is nothing more. It is gone. As abruptly as it arrived, it has vanished. You stand there for awhile. Mystified.

Then you turn and walk towards the waterfall that occupies the den. Who needs a trickle when you have always had that waterfall to wash over you? After a time, the dam and its slow trickle is no match for the feelings the cascading water is giving you.

And you forget.


  1. Perhaps you shouldn't judge the grammar of others until you get yours under control... I think sleep eluded you, not alluded you. ;)

    On an unrelated note, however, I liked your story. Very interesting, and I think I have an idea of what you are alluding to (see what I did there?), but it may just be my own experiences coloring it... Either way, keep writing!

  2. Water is fantastic to write about. It has a big impact on our lives and will do more so over the coming years. Soon the world will fight more about food and water than oil and energy!

  3. This is me tonight. Painting crappy paintings to try and remember the talent that I seem to have let slip through my fingers ...