By Yvonne Williams
You ask for a story from me. I suppose I should start with you. You will be the character who will fill my pages with action and love and heartache. You will be the person whose thoughts my pen will deliver to the world. But how does an ordinary person metamorphosize into one who will survive throughout the ages? Where do I begin this seemingly unachievable tale?
Do I recount the number of times that you have wanted to kick yourself in the vain hope that all of the stupid things that have escaped your lips will somehow reverse themselves and flow backward onto your tongue? But, suppose I give the specific account of a specific moment during a specific day, will you then be comfortable living outside of anonymity? Or will you curl back under the pages hoping that those who saw you will someday forget that they ever noticed at all?
Shall I express the gravity that dwells within the swirling crevices of your fingerprint as the buds of your tongue lick the tip of your finger in order to more easily turn the page? But, if I tell of the feel of canyons languorously swiping against the tips of volcanoes, would you deny that such a sensation had ever existed anywhere in proximity of your body? Or will you rejoice in the knowledge that you are capable of experiencing life so profoundly?
But then, what if I incorporate those moments of fear when your ears rang cold with the rapid thump-thumping of your heart. Or when the sweat from your brow delivered a clammy stickiness to the webs of your fingers? Would you wipe the gluey residue from your palms onto the thighs of your pants then declare that fright has never resided beneath the transparent shell of your flesh? Or would you fall to your knees and beg for admittance into the clique of humanity?
Tell me truly, if you knew that my story was about you, would you insist that I start with a man on a boat who is hopelessly lost at sea and only wants to find his way home?