From my window, I see a starless sky. Clouds block the view, ringing the moon. Rain is coming. It will be a cold, long, pelting rain.
From my window, I see a world made of individuals. They work, they breathe, they seem to love. They quarrel mistakenly, alignment too quiet to pierce the din of squabbling for sport. They commute without community. They take care without caretaking. They gather without embracing. They exist without living. Their bodies function, their minds reason, but their souls flee, pausing to ring the moon on commute to the heavens.
I see a country once a moonlit mansion, its denizens dancing, its citizens smiling. A mansion now decrepit. A country that has lost the light. The dead ransom the living over oaken sins. Strife squeezes souls from bodies. Minds darken, mouths howl, fabric comes apart. Beneath it, skin glistens with the sweat of straining against justice and injustice alike. As guns blaze, anguish is everywhere yet nowhere at all. It touches minds without touching skins, yet the pain is felt. By one, by all … a commune of tears. But without it, no commune at all.
I see a city bustling. Cars, people, buildings, bridges, statues … the music of life echoes across the landscape. This is the music of a speakeasy secreted from the world. Within, people are free to thrive. Rubber meets road. Money changes pockets. Love shimmers in reflections from ponds. It walks under trees, soaking up the rays of sun that sneak through clouds. People hold hands. They forget the world and the country and even the universe. They work and they laugh. They are together, happily occupied and oblivious in their hive.
From my window, I see a street full of neighbours. They walk their dogs and chat. They keep an eye out for one another. They gossip, snoop, pry, and survey. Yet they are patient, caring, mutually supportive. They seem to understand. Kids and pets are respected and held safe. Errant drivers are challenged. Drunks are cursed. This is the other commune. They fancy themselves neighbouring monarchs … kings and queens of so many castles. But their kindnesses betray a mere mortality. An unspoken vulnerability. A need for one another that dare not offend pride by speaking its own name.
But the love is there, and it is felt.
William Sommers is an American writer.