Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

Another snippet of Grace Awakening Myth March 31, 2012

A little snippet from Grace Awakening Myth for your pleasure.  Ben is narrating.  ‘She’ is…well…  You’ll figure it out.

She shook her head. “It’s not our policy to interfere in such a way. The threads have been spun and the destiny is spun into them.”
“New people bring new thread though, don’t they?”
“Of course. Oh. Your thread, do you mean?”
I nodded. “Doesn’t it make me an important thread in her life?”
“Your thread is woven quite tightly into her tapestry so far,  true.  A thread can be continuous within a life. It doesn’t have to bring anything positive, though.”
“I’m positive.” I stared at her doubtful expression. “I’m positive I’m positive!”
She rolled her eye.
“You have no way of knowing that. You don’t know who she would have been without you.”
I stared at her. Better without me? How could Grace be better without me? What did she know about who Grace would have been?
“Your thoughts are on your face,” she said matter-of-factly.
I shrugged. My stomach was moiling. Would she have been better if I hadn’t been following her through time. I swallowed. “No.”
She gazed at me, sympathy warming the eye to tenderness. “Your wishing doesn’t make it so.”
“Can you show me?”
She wrinkled her brow. “Do you want me to pull your thread, so you’re removed from her picture?”
“If you pull it, can it go back?”
She shook her head, “No. Once a thread is out, it can’t be reintegrated the same way again.”
“Could it be better than before?”
She smirked. “Ah. Your optimism amazes me.”
“That doesn’t answer the question.”
She shrugged. “We’re artists. We use our skills and tools to create, but we only have the raw materials we’ve been given. The tapestries always reflect the life stories they tell. Some are ugly simply because the life is ugly. Sometimes the tapestry is strangely compelling for all its ugliness.”
I ponder that for a moment. “Wait.” Do you mean me?”
She guffawed. “Oh by Zeus no. Have you seen your thread? No, not you at all. I mean the lives of people like that snarly creep Ivan the Terrible or that miserable, greasy little Hitler.”
I blinked. I’d lost the rest of her words, frozen by her first statement. I whispered, “Can I see my thread?” In several millennia the audacity of requesting such a thing had never occurred to me. Both gods and men generally avoided interaction with the Moirae, their power was great and terrifying. But I was here, now. Clotho was in a pleasant enough mood. I might never have another opportunity like this. I whispered, “Can I see my thread?”
She glanced around, and then, assured of our privacy, she grinned mischievously and held out her empty hand. She rolled her thumb back and forth across her fingers in rapid circles. A line of sparkles shimmered like a trail between thumb and fingers. She rolled her thumb in quickening circles and the sparkles aligned themselves into a glittering opalescent glow. I stared, awestruck. I reached out for the glowing thread. She grinned at me as she dropped the strand into my palm. “This is just a sample, of course. If we cut thread from the actual tapestry…”
“Yeah. I know.” Mortality was held in the scissors her sister Atropos wielded.
I held an end of the thread and raised it to the light. In a milky whiteness blue, orange, green and pink flamed like an aura of hope. “This looks like a positive kind of thread.”
“It’s beautiful, obviously. One of the most beautiful we spin, actually, but beauty isn’t always good. You know Aglaea. And Aphrodite herself, for that matter.”
This was bold talk, but perhaps the old woman was beyond concern for love, and therefore beyond Aphrodite’s power of retribution.
“Look, sometimes something this sparkly is a distraction. It detracts or endangers. What if her life requires camouflage? This kind of brightness is going to bring the guns on her.”
“Unless she’s trying to camouflage at the Academy Awards.”
She laughed. “Well, that’s true I suppose.
“Beauty, Radiance, and Joy.” The natures of the Three Graces.
“They’re glorious threads, aren’t they?”
She shrugged and glanced away.
“You lying witch,” I muttered.
She raised an eyebrow. “That’s not the kind of thing you say to someone you’re trying to convince to give you a favour.”
“I am a positive element in her life.”
“You’re welcome to think so.”
“I am a continuity of love and acceptance, giving her strength,” I said firmly.
She scoffed. “You’re a continous source of pressure and obsession.”
“In a good way.”
She tried to look serious, but she had to stifle a snort of amusement.
“So will you help?”
“Oh, quit looking at me with those mushy, puppy dog eyes.”
“What if I write you a song?”
Her eye lashes fluttered. Perhaps she wasn’t completely out of Aphrodite’s influence after all.”
“Just for me?”
“Well. To keep you in harmony, I suppose I’d better compose a verse for each of your sisters as well.”
She sighed, “I suppose you must,” and gave me the most coquettish look I’d ever seen from a single eyeball. “But my verse will be the best one, aye?”
“Indeed. You will help?”
“All right. Come over by the door, and we’ll discuss the details.” She gripped my hand and pulled me along behind her. She was surprisingly strong, and I was reminded that despite her wizzened appearance, she was not to be trifled with. Her verse would have to be the best.


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