Sunday, June 19, 2011

like that

“touch my back,” he said again.

He was holding two large loads of garbage, swinging each from a fully extended arm. The weight was wearing, obviously, as his muscles shook though they held steady in the exertion. I was hesitant, but reached out gingerly and made soft contact with the his trembling back.

“It's like that.”- and he meant the force of holding nothing, of holding the world on one's shoulders, the force of Atlas or Jesus or Hercules.

Instead it reminded me of the little birds I used to pick up out of my yard in Alabama, fragile. Small. They always died. In hopes of saving them from the cats I would hide them in converted shoe-boxes down by the dryer, where it was warm, and feed them crushed worms, but they always died. Always.

I used to carry nothing. It does grow so tiring.

2 comments:

Reclaimed Dasein said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
misssrobin said...

It can be difficult knowing which loads to carry. And it's tough to figure out a balance when the load keeps switching.

I guess the best we can do is to keep working those muscles and know when to put down what isn't our responsibility.