'Kill it', she said.
Then, as I picked it up...
'No, don't touch it.'
"it" was a gecko.
"it" was only an inch long.
"it" was ever so still...
scared and desperate--
like a scream,
looking for a mouth.
I could feel it's heartbeat on the palm of my hand...
all the way down the hall, past my horrified co-worker and out the glass doors, I could feel its heart--
tiny and so fast that it was more like a vibration than an actual beat against my giant hand.
I put my hand, palm up, on the ground. The gecko stayed for just a breath and then there was nothing but a strange stillness where the rhythm of a heart had been.
that night, falling into dreams, i prayed
that as night cradled me in gentle hands
it would feel my tiny heartbeat
and there would be mercy
The night before, I'd breathed life into a body.
I didn't know if I was a monster or a hero.
I didn't know if I'd allowed a soul who needed more time the power to wander for a bit longer or if I'd jump started a machine and forced a soul to remain trapped inside.
I so believe in souls.
I sat up all night watching shadows on the wall and demanding of myself--'who the fuck do you think you are?'
I felt, this night, that I had conspired with the universe and conquered every force that had ever worked against me.
The stars, that night, were mine--every last one.
three nights before, I'd failed
I sat up all night crying, not because it was my first loss but because I'd wanted so badly for this person to see tomorrow, and demanding of myself--'who the fuck do you think you are?'
I looked up at the sky and the stars seemed, that night, to all be looking lazily away. I felt abandoned or worse--cheated.
I felt simply forgotten by the universe.
To let go a body from your hand--
to not really give life but allow a continued existence and wonder, at the same time, if the hand you're standing in will allow you the same immunity...
I just don't know, you. I really just don't know.