Hear the Wails

I focused on the black and yellow markings of a cricket, watched my pain merge its colors into a liquid blur. The Burmans made dinner—dandelion greens with garlic, by the smell and weediness of the screams.

They were good people, took me in and treated me humanely, after other foster families had used faith and fist to beat their demons out of me. But why can’t they hear the wails of the flowers?

I closed my mind to the hurt, but one flower broke through. “I see you,” she said. “I burn in the dark, peeking through your heart.”

the wee notes…
– Linked to Friday Fictioneers. Visit Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ blog, to join the writing fun. Follow this LINK, to read what others have written out of the cricket.
– The markings of the cricket brought to mind a blackout poem I crafted some weeks back. The flower I drew on the blackout, plus the wee poem itself, reminded me of the young protagonist of “The Dark Place”, the last story in my Blooming Howls collection. I decided to write today’s tale from her point of view. It was nice—and devastating—to write her again.

photo by Shaktiki Sharma

I see you.
I am in the dark
through your heart.

95 thoughts on “Hear the Wails

  1. Dear Magaly,

    One word. Wow! “…beat their demons out of me.” Powerful piece. Well done. I like the artwork to go with it.



    • What would we eat, indeed… if we felt a bit more for the things around us. Or, perhaps, a more appropriate question might be, would we treat the things we eat more humanely if we thought them as more than just nourishment?

      • I think some would. It’s like anything else. There will be some who will think of others and some that don’t. Logic doesn’t enter the pic for some.

        • I think this is more about empathy than about logic. Logic dictates that if we don’t eat, we’ll die. Empathy should tell us to be more conscientious–we don’t need to destroy everything in order to feed ourselves.

  2. WOW! So powerful – and so intensely beautiful – it went in deep. And your art is wondrous. Sigh. It doesnt get much better, my friend, than how I felt after perusing this post.

  3. This is absolutely intense Magaly, especially “I focused on the black and yellow markings of a cricket, watched my pain merge its colors into a liquid blur” and “I closed my mind to the hurt, but one flower broke through. “I see you,” she said. “I burn in the dark, peeking through your heart.” Beautifully penned!

    Lots of love,

  4. I think they may cry when plucked from the earth even before wailing from torture for our consumption… Love it, the guilt inflicted via sustainance… Very unsettling … In the most Wicked way xox

  5. That was truly Wow. I, too, read it… actually I read it three times. Powerful stuff. And now I see YOU too have books out there for me to buy… sigh… these Friday Fictioneers are constantly giving me more to read!!

  6. Faith and fists, sadly how often those are used together. This was devastating to read, but only because you write so well, which makes it a joy to read! What a conundrum! Would that we could but dine on sunshine and sip from clouds.

    • You sweet talking, you!

      And yes, how cool it would be if the world could continue revolving without loss. But we know the Circle of Life needs both birth and death in order to go on. Maybe we’ll learn to be nicer to the things that die in order for us to live.

  7. This reminded me of a friend of mine who always had a tough time with the whole food chain thing. She loved her pet critters and hated that she had to feed other little critters to them.

    I believe I finally convinced her that all life requires exchange of energy and other life. The trick is to achknowledge what is being given in the exchange.

    I’m not sure I can internalize that, but your piece here reminded me that I ought to.

    • I believe that some things most die so others can live–from plants to animals, depending on what a person (or beast) eats. I just wish that we could be less wasteful, less greedy, less inhumane… Maybe we’ll lean, maybe…

  8. How traumatic, to always hear screaming – where would you find any peace? And just the hints at the narrartor’s past show that they’re in a better place, if not perfect. Wonderful job

  9. Wow, that is crazy good. So much magic and pain and mystery in such a short glimpse. What her life must be like, hearing those wails.

    I see you. I burn in the dark. Wow.

    The artwork adds so powerfully to it, too. Thank you for making this and sharing it.

  10. When I discussed vegetarianism with my father years ago, he said that if everybody in the world became vegetarians, it would necessitate mass genocide of all domestic livestock. I also discussed the same subject with my homeopath, who said that eating meat was okay, just as long as you didn’t eat it every day, and that the animals had been well-treated during their lives, and humanely slaughtered in the end. At the other end of the spectrum are people who literally won’t kill a fly, for fear of accumulating bad karma. It’s all a matter of balance and, as intelligent beings, cruelty, exploitation, and abuse are wrong, whether it’s to each other, animals, or whatever.
    Magaly, you’re such a powerful writer, with a most unique voice. This piece you’ve written is so well-crafted and just …well, as other people have said, it’s “Wow!”

    • I completely agree with your conclusion, especially the bit about me awesome and extremely modest. Just kidding *hehehe*. Seriously, though, I share your beliefs–we need is balance. I doubt our society could support a fully vegetarian population. After a while, the planet might not be able to feed and shelter all living things–the Circle of Life (and death) is a circle for a reason. We just need to use the huge brain Nature gave us to make things as balanced as possible.

      Thanks a bunch for sharing your detailed thoughts.

    • ISIS and every other religious group that insists on shoving their beliefs and way of life down everybody’s throats, weather the bodies in question welcome said beliefs or not. ISIS uses overt violence, the “accepted majority” uses their access to laws and their own sense of morality to cause damage. It’s a mess, a very sad mess.

  11. This uses horror in such a precise, steady, yet understated way. It’s like the little black dress of horror. Even without knowing the original, you get the sense the protagonist is likely quite mad, but that in no way negates the truth of some of the evil she has seen.

  12. The tears have diminished enough this time to leave a comment. What I love about words is that they communicate differently to each reader. “I see you” and the spark of light may flicker. Only the owner can put that little light out. I see you too beautiful Magaly!

  13. This is such an amazing story, full of wonder and worry. I try to imagine the sounds the grass makes when a herd of cattle is grazing… The art is great too, a thoroughly thought provoking and enjoyable experience, bravo.

    • I just tried to imagine the grass in the situation you described and… ouch. I wonder if someone’s sanity can survive hearing that all the time.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the reading. Thanks so much for telling me so.

  14. You illustrated so well that we have been given the gift to understand that every thing on earth has a right to compassion. It’s a really shame we do not use that gift more.

  15. So disturbing yet powerful, Magaly. It takes a very compassionate person to understand the pain of ALL living beings. And very creative to put it into artwork so beautiful!

  16. Oh what suffering the plants will have… if you could hear the pain of roots when we walk upon them too… it would be so hard.

  17. There’s magic here and this is so beautifully written. The line about the demons being beaten out her is quite powerful. It gave me a real sense of the darkness she’s in. Such a pleasure to read.

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