Friday, April 16, 2010

Building Freedom

I looked out at the city behind me, my view from the top of my apartment building. The roof was quiet, and a warm breeze swept by me. It brought the scent of the sea. I listened to the whisper of traffic far below me, and the occasional airplane above me. Venus and a nearly new moon lounged in the western sky, and the water looked like a blanket of pitch.

I wasn't depressed with my life, but I wasn't content, either. My apartment had become barren, a place only to sleep, eat, and work. I'd quit my job, hoping to finish my last project before what little money I'd saved ran out. I'd spent the last month building freedom, and after many midnight tests, I thought I had the final product in my hands. It was lightweight, luxuriously soft to the touch, and flexible in the right places. After so many failed attempts, I knew this had to be the one that gave me my freedom. It had to be, I said, because I couldn't afford any more tries or wasted time.

I stood on the edge of the barrier that kept stupid people like me from falling to their deaths. If I'd had friends who cared, friends who visited me, they would have grabbed me and pulled me back. "You idiot!" They'd say. "You have so much life ahead of you! Are things really so bad?"

"No," I'd respond, "They're just so average."

With what I hoped was a graceful leap, my feet left the building. My heart seemed to stop in my chest, and I imagined it trying to leap back up to the safety of my apartment's rooftop. I left my life behind me as the wind whipped through my hair and pulled at the skin on my face. I turned my watery eyes from the ground rushing upwards to the unmoving sea.

I spread my wings and flew away.


  1. Flying is good for the soul. I love the description of the contraption itself, it leaves a lot for the imagination to fill in. :)

  2. Have a wonderful mental picture of the flying-machine... Just goes to show that well-meaning friends can sometimes simply hold you back from going for your dreams!

  3. If it's average to have wings, then I'll gladly be a typical man. Happy you're flying, if only on words.

  4. Very nice and poetic. Almost a prose poem really.