Dream date: April 16th, 2017.
A large, sweeping tree, though the branches do not touch us. Quadrifolium sitting underneath, partly in shade, partly alit. We four sitting in a crescent. Turtle, Andrei, me, Chizuru. The breeze tousling us, we sit, small talk, small motions, waiting. Waiting, exhausted from searching. A bridge near to us, closest to Turtle. Wooden bridge, stone supports. A gentle river, a white swan.
Calm, though certainly not at peace. Poised. Chizuru notices the approaching Kirari first. Kirari comes to us, going to her knees to meet with us, though the height difference is subtle. Only Andrei surpasses this differential.
All our breaths return, engaging in small talk once again. A sigh of relief, like welcoming a familiar friend.
Andrei: All those stars, the hosts of heaven, looking down on us with pity or wrath. Sometimes it’s tiring.
Nostalgic. Poignant. Andrei in black, me in white, Chizuru folding a red lotus from paper, Turtle cascading pink lotus petals from his hands, flowing through his fingers.
Kirari: Ever think of going back? To the celestial worlds, I mean.
Kirari’s tone has me humbled. Inquiring, serious, wisdom beyond measure. Compassionate. Genuinely concerned and wanted to know, a desire expressed from a heart that has witnessed suffering. While she is watching Andrei as she asks this question, I felt the inquiry was for us all.
Me: Sometimes I look at the sky wistfully, remembering. But then I see you, this world, and those here. And I recall our decision: This world, too, is beautiful.
Chizuru finishes the lotus, holding it in her palms as if in offering. The breeze picks up. Turtle’s pink lotus petals, bearing a creamy white, stream around Kirari. She gazes at the four of us, smiling. A distant, patient, compassionate love. A loneliness, but not cold. Patient, wise, compassionate.
It’s then I realize. We weren’t the ones waiting for her to come to us. We were to come to her.
I woke that morning, during the ninth hour. Tears once again slipping my left eye while my right eye moistened. Crying, not bawling. Just tears, only tears.
- “Viva Forever” by Spice Girls