Wednesday, May 10, 2017

The visitor

It happens not far from here. Maybe even in your neighborhood. You know. Leafy street. Fall. Early in the morning. It's quiet. A bright light appears in the corner of the sky. Is it a comet? An asteroid? It gets bigger. Brighter. It's coming this way, right to this particular example of a suburban grid. And no one notices.. Not even old man Zimmerman who suffers from insomnia and takes his dog for walks at 3 in the morning. He's asleep. No dog barks. No sixth animal senses engaged. No birds atwitter. No mice wrinkling their noses in alarm.

The ball of light grows bigger and brighter in silence until just as it's about to land a loud whooshing noise, like a freight train after all the bells and whistles have been sounded. It's a heavy sound, a sound of movement, of great speed. And then a sonic boom, car alarms, objects falling off shelves. Everyone will have their story. Where they were. What happened in their homes. Then a thud felt as the impact reverberates through the earth. Someone calls the cops. A pajama-clad crowd gathers in the street.

"Did you hear it?"

"Where did it come from?"

"Over here."

The crowd moves, its collective will stirred into action.

But when they arrive, they are disappointed by what they see. Instead of a crashed airplane and all the carnage it would bring; instead of an asteroid, a glowing, smoking ball of rock, instead of aliens and pytotechnics and fire and all the gruesome things imagination can conjur, there is.... A fallen tree. Dead grass. But nothing else.

A TV crew comes out. There's a short blurb on the morning drive time shows, but by the evening it is forgotten.

Only there was something. Something from another world. Something sentient and alive. Something intelligent. And it is still around...

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