Thursday, October 15, 2015

Momentum

It was dawn and he hadn't slept all night.

He was riding, without permission, on a cross-country freight train.  The noise wasn't letting him sleep.  The train had passed through thousands of miles of terrain: desert, mountain, lake, forest, rock...

The train had killed many a wild animal straying on the track.  It had killed many birds in its hurtling motion.  It had gone over carcasses and boulders and fallen trees and snow and sand...

The momentum of the train was immense.  Against its momentum, nothing lasted for long.  No view was eternal, no horizon remained a horizon, no cloud was permanent, no object was an obstacle.

It was dawn and he hadn't slept all night.

The sun was coming up far in the east, and the silence and softness of that early hour was in sharp contrast with the thundering roar of the train.

On a whim he jumped off the train.  The momentum continued to thrust him forward, dragging and bouncing him by the tracks, injuring and lacerating and scraping him all over his body.

Eventually he came to rest.  The train had disappeared in the distance.  He looked around him and saw tiny leaves, flowers and dewdrops on the grass.  The sunlight was shimmering on the drops and he dared not move, afraid to disturb those precarious beads of water.

He remained that way for what seemed to him an eternity when another freight train leaped up from behind him and deafened him with its roar.  This train was filled with cattle and sheep and monkeys who were all asleep at that hour.

As the train was passing him, he gulped a mouthful of air, stood up, faced the tracks, picked up a big rock, and with all his might, threw it under the train.  He had a perverse impulse to derail it.

The wheels of the train came in contact with the rock, and crushed it to powder.  No animal on that train even registered what had happened.  In all that noise of that train, that incident was as-if silent and non-existent.  The wheel smoothly passed over that powdered rock without experiencing even a minor bump.

He laughed aloud at his own ambition and foolishness, turned around, and vanished into the forest.

2 comments:

zrini said...

Great story. Would he look at it differently if he happens to find himself in the train again, with the new wisdom?

Anonymous said...

"...He looked around him and saw tiny leaves, flowers and dewdrops on the grass. The sunlight was shimmering on the drops and he dared not move..." So it was after dawn...?

"...This train was filled with cattle and sheep and monkeys who were all asleep at that hour."

Thoughts are non- sequitors, but as usual, a good descriptive read:-). Stay well.