He looked out west over the sea. Where he was used to gilded opulence and vistas thronged with sycophancy, here was wind and the gentle caress of ocean spray. Behind him, from the rushes of the dunes, were his footsteps, chastened by the winds of time. That same gust passed through him as though he were a ghost, brushing away those moments to the past. For a brief moment, maybe for the first time, he felt at peace.
He surrendered because in that state he was everything. His soul was not constricted by his mind or the vibrations in his pocket and he was free to soar with the seagulls bending the horizon, chewing the skies like a tractor takes the fields. Weakness in that moment no longer frightened him. This land was where forebears had spent their lives rotating into one another as surely as winter moves into spring. They would rise with the longer days, consolidate with the night, taking leave with the foliage of autumn and giving themselves to the land anew.
This pattern had eluded him. This severance caused pain and had been a part of him his entire life. He had never realised he was screaming. He was borne far from all of this like a rabbit in a cage. This cage was what he had been raised to believe as sacrosanct. He believed it was what he deserved as innate reward for something he could not speak of. Yet it made him so angry. What stirred in him was trauma that he tried to satisfy with gold that nourished him like poison. Amidst such confusing depression, the cage became more of what he deserved.
Mistaking the dagger in his heart for ambition, he stretched further, deepening the wound and enveloping millions of others with a cloak that would smother their own understandings to what once was. There were countless stories like his of severed people, trying to return to a story that never existed. He embodied all of this, the misguided idea that individualism could vanquish the demons that were being summoned greater day by day. Throughout human history, no one had ever been so ridiculed. No one had ever been so lonely.
On the shore, for a brief moment, he is released from all of this. He is a mirror reflecting the opposite of the contortions he has become. He is captivated. A needle pricks his eye and a tear falls from his face. He doesn’t recognise it. The thread is weaved and in another life he will have the chance to repent. He will begin the journey to reclaim his soul. The waves rose high and with them he was gone.