ESCAPING ETERNITY

xOx

He cannot escape the rain
He sees it fall down porcelain rocks
Feels it on his hands as he pushes his boat from shore
It's always a struggle to set sail
But so is the journey along misty grey streams
For he can always hear the rain

He cannot escape the loneliness
For though he is surrounded by people
They are always running away from him
And he is tired of chasing
Tired of the fear etched on people's faces
When he finally catches up to them
He understands them, in a way
He's always wishing he could outrun the loneliness
But he knows there are some things you cannot escape

Like grief, he cannot escape it
For once, he'd like to experience happiness
He sees it everywhere
In the faces of parents cradling newborns
Couples announcing engagements
Families going on holidays
But whenever he reaches out to touch it
The happiness dissipates
The parents stand by tiny coffins
The engagements have been replaced by funerals
The holidays have ended up at the morgue
And all the while, it is still raining

He has come across many like him
Souls overcome by loneliness and grief
Whose dreams echo with the sound of rain
And he has helped them escape
To joyous lands under eternally clear skies
Lands which he only glimpses
Midway from a silver-white bridge
He wishes he wasn't always pulled back to grey shores
But he understands why it is so
The gift one must receive to walk the bridge
Has not been given to him
The Angel of Death cannot die

And so he sails through the mists
Singing songs of lamentation
That reach mortal shores as howls of wind
Leaves fall from shivering trees
And birds end their songs as they see his shadow
Walking along the beach in the rain
They fly away hurriedly to sunlit lands

He sits on the sand and stares out at the horizon
And is surprised to see an old man
Walking alongside the waves
When the old man looks at him and does not flee
He wishes he could save him from fate
For this man looks kindly upon him
And he cannot remember the last time someone smiled at him
Then the man stretches out his arms
And a thick fog starts to form
A voice rises above the pained wails of the wind:
You regard yourself as the Angel of Death
But to me and many others, you are an Angel of Life

When the birds return
The wind has subsided
The fog has cleared
And the beach is empty
Save for a small boat
Disappearing beyond the horizon