She was so sweet, that deer. She stepped right into the crosshairs of Bob’s rifle and poked her head up as if to say, “Look at who you’re killing.” Clenching my stomach, I turned away.
In that moment, two things happened simultaneously. All noise disappeared and all movement froze. It was like I had stepped into a Grant Wood painting. I was surrounded by shapes and patterns, by color and form. Quite simply, the world as I knew it had stopped. A monk shimmered before my eyes. He radiated calm and, in that surreal moment, he seemed familiar, almost like a friend. My heart thumped and yet, strangely, my mind was a calm sea. In what seemed like an eternal moment, we stared into each other’s eyes and connected. I instantly understood that the deer wasn’t going to die after all. It was me… I was going to die, die that very night, die at 7 pm in fact. And, shockingly, then continue in another body.
I forced myself to belly breathe. Did this happen to other people? Was death … flexible? Were there alternatives to the hereafter that we could not begin to imagine? A holographic movie started playing in my mind. I saw the waiting body, the long dark hair, so different from my own short curls. I saw the hospital equipment surrounding a lone, female figure, wilting flowers on a formica table, a tortured older man sitting by her bedside. She didn’t want to be here. She resented being born in the first place. And she couldn’t wait for me. For 7 pm. For release.
The monk took my hand and gently squeezed. “Prepare.” His words were a whisper and a warning. The golden field around me became luminous, the monk’s robe shone with firelight and I could smell the earth, rich and bountiful. It was a freefall into nothingness and then everything snapped back into motion. Bob turned his head to me and smiled. “We’re going have venison tonight, babe!”
I shook my head. I’d had a breakdown. My failing marriage had finally gotten to me and this was clearly an overdue hallucination. There was no way I was dying tonight. Impossible.
“Hey, what are those?” Bob asked, pointing to a path nearby.
Glowing footprints rounded a tree and seemed to vanish even as we watched. My eyes widened. “I think it means I might not make it to dinner tonight.”
Photo by Alice Popkorn
The Daily Post: Connected
Sunday Scribblings: Seven