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The Eye of the Beholder

He was walking down a busy street. His skin was pale, as though he never saw the sun, and his clothing seemed old and dirty. The people waling by ignored him entirely, concerned only with themselves. He tried to look at each of their faces, interested in them all, but there were too many. He soon gave up and focused on the path ahead.

He seemed to notice for the first time the trees that lined the sidewalks. Fascinated by them, he found a way through the river of people to the nearest one. He whispered to himself, "Green..." He reached up and picked one of the leaves. He felt the smoothness of the small thing, and tried to think back, but couldn't go far enough. He gently put it into his pocket and continued on his way.

The people began to thin out and other things became noticeable to the man, such as the cars. Hundreds zipped by him, the majority of which were yellow. He desperately wanted to get in one, but the speed that they traveled at frightened him.

He looked up and saw not only the tips of the skyscrapers around him, but also the sky itself. It was a beautiful shade of blue. He could see something bright from the corner of his eye, and turned to look at it. It was a ball of whitish yellow light. As he looked straight at it, he was forced him to squint. He had to turn his gaze to stop from seeing so many spots. He blinked a few times and they passed. He unhappily went back to the gray street that he was walking along and quickened his pace.

He turned a corner and then another and saw another body of blue, but this one was darker. Straight ahead of him was nothing but blue, dark and sloshing below, and light and wistful on top. The only thing that dared to interfere with it was a tall statue of a woman. She seemed strong, supported by everything around her. Concentrating again on the horizon, he thought about how he had never seen that much... water. The water he was looking at was nothing like the water he had ever seen before. He started to get closer to it when the ground shook violently. He opened his eyes.

He was surrounded again in the never-ending darkness, only a few small fires daring to pierce it. The ground shook again and this time he heard the explosion. The man knew to run then, hoping that he still had a chance. He reached what used to be a subway station before the next missile hit. He sighed and reached in his pocket, half expecting to find the leaf that seemed so real moments before. There was nothing there. It had only been a dream. This was reality.

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If you've read Upsideclown and old articles here, you get the idea. Submissions are always welcome: We operate a strictly hands-off editorial approach (we won't even correct your spelling). Once submitted, your article goes to the vote by the seven clowns. A majority, and you're in the queue for Friday publications. Go on -- And if you want to know more, hints or clarifications: come ask us in talk.


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