No Bird but an Invisible Thing

by Christian T.S. Crumlish

I reached under the lampshade to turn off the light.

In the real one I'm up late trying not to make any noise.

The story can start anywhere

So is foreknowledge then an essential aspect of the story?

Look.

The record is incomplete,

Still I spend the whole day

The characters in the story tell each other

            He is dead.

Trying not to think about money

Cyrus wandered along a shady river. It was hot and there was no one in sight. He hit fast forward. Shadows blurred by the sun reached higher and higher overhead. In the distance he could make out a bent-over figure. He resumed normal speed. As he got closer he heard her weeping. Are you Isis? he asked her.

Here I am she said, dark tall hollow eyed willowy seemingly draped in mists. Hunched over one minute filling all space the next. Who are you, mortal, to approach me unafraid and challenge me thus? Donít you see my grief?

He nodded.

Donít you fear the goddess in her sorrow? Her eyes flashed.

He said, I am sorry. I will show more respect.

What are you thinking she said suddenly. I do not like the look in your eyes.

Quickly he said, Why are you crying?

Is it not supposed to be a mystery? she asked. Do you think you can come and ask me anything? Are you an adept?

I donít know, he said.

You knew one of my names, she pointed out, Do you know my brother my lover?

I may know him.

Did you know he was dead?

I had heard but how can a god die?

A god is just a hero from a long time ago, she lectured; another hero can kill him. Seth the destroyer has scattered him in the river. I am plotting revenge. She gestured at a pile in the shade.

He tried to look without displaying unseemly interest. He could make out a thigh or piece of a torso a hand what may have been a shaggy mop of hair. You can put him together again?

I can. I could do it now but he would not be whole. There is a piece of him I cannot find and while I fear it is lost forever I owe it to him to look.

And what kind of love is it

And if you were always in the now

She came out squinting

Pat and Mike went fishing.

Finally it came to me what they saw.

            He is dead.

Let me tell you how she saved my hand:

            He is dead.

END