The Ground A Breathing Wound
by Dan
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.



The Wandering Lake - "People"

Go to sleep. Please go to sleep now, I am tired and you are tired. Please go to sleep.

I don't want to go to sleep. I'm not tired. I'm happy because of your new job and because we live by the forest now. I know I'm not supposed to go in, but even just to live beside it, it makes me dream.

I named you Dark Rescue, you know how dangerous it is. Just check your geiger if you don't believe me. Now go to sleep. Please.

Tell me about the forest. Then I will go to sleep. I promise.

Fine. I will tell you about the forest, and then you will go to sleep.

--the light turned off, a candle lit for mood--

Do you know there are beasts that roam the Uninhabitable Zone? The beasts and the bugs and the plants have taken back the earth now, it is theirs again. They are sick and dying, but they are kings and queens nonetheless. A dying noble is still a noble, and they live their lives according to their station, short though they may be. On one of my trips, I've told you many times, I saw a fox wearing a hide, he wore it like a cape, and he was a king. I've told you many times about his wife, the fair tanuki, with her silver eyes and dripping amulet, but I have not told you yet about their daughter, the beautiful and fiery Iriomote cat. The king and queen adopted her after the waves settled her there, picked up all the way from the island of Iriomote to the northern forest. She was rebellious and wily and incorrigible, but they loved her. She loved to hunt, as all Iriomote cats do, and she was very good at it. She could catch a snake with one paw, her claws like perfect fingers that brought it to her mouth. But the adopted princess, her name was Ichi as she was the first child of the king and queen, became arrogant with her skill, always proclaiming she could hunt larger and larger animals. "I can kill a crane," she said one day, while batting around an old egg shell on their floor of their dirt home. Her mother, the fair tanuki, smiled and looked back at her work, sorting sticks into piles. "You don't believe me, I can kill a crane," said Ichi, more determined. "I believe you can do anything you set your mind to," said her mother, in the way that mothers set those words down like flowers on the graves of future plans. "You don't believe me," and Ichi set out into the snow, and made her way down into the buildings, where the cranes often took shelter. "Be careful," said her mother, looking back towards the sticks.

Ichi prowled and scampered through the snow, often deep in drifts, and made her way through buildings. She saw a group of cranes near an old fountain, just standing and dipping their heads. She watched one walk away, as if wandering, and she snapped herself into action; time to close in. Ichi went back around the old walls of a supermarket, the automatic doors held powerless open by snow, and followed the crane, a big black crane with partly white feathers, into the street.

The old crane was very wise, this was no easy target for Ichi, especially since it was ten times her size. The old wise crane saw her coming, saw her climb onto the edge of the old subway entrance to the underground, in the reflection of the glass on the automatic doors. She was trying to find a high vantage, in order to leap onto the crane's back and sink her teeth into its neck, so she stood perched on the walls of the old subway entrance, and it was slippery, covered in ice. As she began to lose her balance, the crane made a quick decision. If Ichi were to fall, she would land in the underground, which may kill her instantly from falling, but would kill her within hours from the radiation pocket. The crane swooped up into the air and plucked Ichi from the walls of the old subway and carried her high into the trees. As he dropped her, he said, "Hang on to those treetops, your parents need you to survive." And that was all he said, and Ichi did hang on, and she went back to her mother, who had no idea how close she'd come to losing her. "Did you catch a crane?" she asked Ichi, the sticks now sorted. "Yes," she said, happy to be back home, "but I let it go. Cranes are too beautiful to hunt. So I let it go."

Will you be working all day tomorrow?

Yes. All day and all weekend.



Posted by Dan at June 28, 2011 12:57 AM

This, is good.

Posted by Jimbob at June 28, 2011 7:23 PM

This sounds like it could be a Miyazaki film.

Posted by DocNoc at June 29, 2011 8:38 PM

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Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

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Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

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