Down the trail between the trees I came upon a great big rock.
About waist high, Perfectly round it seemed.
I ventured a touch… Perfectly round and perfectly soiled. Laying my ear on it. A hum from within.
I knocked. Then knocked again.
Surprisingly hollow, each knock came back to me… not quite an echo…
A faint and muffled h-e-l-p! emerged from within — What was that..?
I quickly rubbed the dirt away and showed it to be the color of polished charcoal!
My ear against the glass, now clearly heard the voice.
Rubbing the surface, still black as pain…
I rapped the surface as loud as I could — my knocks came back!
They were blows from within. Cleaning the inside bit by bit.
Through the new little window cleaned away, I saw a very dirty child. Big round eyes, muffled voice, “Help! Get me out!”
I have to be quick! — slamming the largest rock in sight, but all it did was clean some more.
He must have gone in somehow, but where’s the door. I said, “How’d you get in?! Clean it some more?”
Blank stare from within. I rubbed and rubbed, till my hands were pain.
“I cleaned most of the outside, you must clean the inside now!” Screaming now.
He looked at me strange. Like my words were nonsense.
“THE INSIDE! YOU MUST CLEAN THE INSIDE YOURSELF! I CAN’T DO IT FOR YOU! YOU MUST DO IT YOURSELF!” Louder this time..
Time stretched on, then he started to clean.
“There! I can see it! It’s a door and a latch is inside!” — I jumped like a little kid.
I ran my hand around the square door but could never feel a seam. That’s why I couldn’t find it before The simple latch was clear, but unaccessible to me…
“Throw the latch buddy!”
Crazy talk, I read in his eyes.
Pointing to the latch I mimicked, yet he stayed frozen, eyes pleading to mine.
He kept screaming, “Help me! Help me! HELP ME!” — This went on and on…
Rock as heavy as my heart, I slammed the it against the glass door, time after time until my arms were dead.
“I can’t help you little guy. I can’t break in!
I’ve done all I can. Throw the latch and free yourself! If you would only try…”
I turned down the path, facing my feet. Steps heavy. Eyelids too.
Then a tiny voice stopped me cold. A child’s voice slowly reached me, “Wait for me! Wait for me!”
I turned to see a boy, flying through the trail. White teeth shining. Each step was joy!
We melted in a hug as time dissolved, then took our time back in giggles and song.
Copyright © 2016 By Ray Diaz