fear and doubt - a story in parts - 1

he feared that everything had been done before. he was afraid but the fear was comforting at times. the fear allowed him to feel less guilty about the static routine his life had become. "i needn't try that, it's already been done," he thought to himself, holding the finality close against him, warm and comforting as a cup of tea. the thought was the mug that held the tea and the tea was the feeling - much too hot - insulated to protect his heart he imagined. he kicked out at the dirt under the park bench and squinted at sunlight dancing through tree leaves. he heard his own breathing under the sounds of the park and listened to children play. he noticed they either skidded down the slide to stop abruptly or fly out into the sand. he felt like the little girl in pigtails and pink nail polish whose hands flew out to the sides just short of the break where plastic became air and pressed against the red tubing. at the same time she raised her knees so her bare sweaty feet would fight the gravity that sent her down in the first place. she sat looking out into the playground from the tunnel. 'children see too much' he thought as she caught his eyes. he flinched, looked down at the patchy grass and felt depressed. he was at the bottom of his red tube.

she sighed hard and felt as though she sent her expelled breath clear across the lake. she twisted the blanket beneath her between her fingers and closed her eyes tight. "what am i going to do now" she thought to herself, not a question, more reprimand than possibility, not at all open-ended as questions ought to be. she wanted to lay back and lift up onto the wind like her breath. 'inhale' the worries her head fought with her heart over and 'exhale' them out into the atmosphere. 'oh, if it were only so easy,' she thought and placed one hand over her chest and another across her forehead in the hopes her hands could quell the fury flying between the two. but her head wouldn't let her heart be, her head bombarded her heart with questions that were really accusations covered in a facetious film of curiosity (her heart could tell.) her head rang out with worried what ifs that all boiled down to missed opportunity. What if she should have pursued piano - damn her childish fears of the royal conservatory exams that kept her from returning to write the exam that fifth time. What if her limbs were meant for dance and she was keeping them from their true purpose - she cursed the insecurity that kept her in the back row of jazz class far from the mirror her own shape obscured by other bodies. What if she had been a more active student and survived not three but four internships or taken not two but five languages or tried to run the school paper instead of spin records hiding in away with music at the school radio? What if, what if, what if, whutiph, whutiph, whutiph... Her head was running away with her heart in the back seat, dictating the road to take and gaining speed. To focus she tricked her brain into slowing and stretching by pulling her hair from the roots at her neck, then tugging her ears out to each side and rubbing her temples round n' round. She sighed again and imagined herself floating up onto the air out into the atmostphere.

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