Flash Fiction: Every Soul Lost in Sunset
...as you read, enjoy the sunset.
Will You Be Lost in Sunset?
It is just another sunset. So you say. But, no matter, they keep coming: old ones, young ones, arriving in style in vintage cars, or riding on motorcycles, seated in vans or sedans. Some walk, some ride bicycles. Some come in wheelchairs, little children perched precariously on the withered laps of the drivers. Some come riding scooters, hopping off at their destinations, wearing the pride of their efficiency and economy like a loose mantle flapping in the wind. They stop short abruptly, scattering sand underneath their little wheels.
They will all soon be souls lost in sunset, these sunset groupies - no, sunset junkies.
Each observer stakes claim to a small space to stand or sit - turned toward the sunset - the old ones thinking it will contribute to their immortality or, at least prolong their appointed days.
The young arrivals are just discovering the significance of such an awesome event - the inevitability of the daily setting sun. The very young merely follow along, unsure of their role, some barely walking others skipping in time to the waves that gently glide closer and closer to their toes. Eventually they will learn the ancient meaning of this sunset. One day they too will be lost in sunset. But for today, there is just fun.
The setting sun. It means surviving one more day, not just survival of their own small lives, but of the entire world. It means nearly everyone will get another chance at dreams fulfilled, another shot at tomorrow because this group is lost in the sunset today.
Sunset images everywhere.
Ritualistic, reverent, almost other worldly. Faces lift in expectation. There is no warmth left. Still, they bathe in the afterglow. This is the magic of life, the giver of life, the extension of life. The golden orb silently slides down to kiss the horizon, lingering there, held like a lover. Suspended on an invisible thread stretched taut, until the hold of heaven gives way, the horizon wins and the sun slides into the horizon's embrace, waters glowing golden in the blaze of the struggle.
Heads turn expectantly. Sunset images emblazoned in their minds. they've seen this struggle so many times before. The Heaven's claim can only last for so long.
The sun is a fickle lover, giving itself to the Heavens for just a finite space of time. None but the slightly irreverent and the children speak in hushed voices. Then complete silence and for an instant, all hearts pause, no one breathes. The rivalry between heaven and horizon is played out - the sun the prize.
Silent prayers are sent extolling the Sun God or their God of Creation, their God of Destruction - to be there for them the next day; asking for life, asking to feel the warmth enfold them in a blanket of safety and well being. Lost in sunset, holding fast to their souls, praying, seeking another day.
Copyright 2011: Cynthia Turner
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