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Island Girl

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The drum in his heart, quiet but growing louder, was beating slowly. The air was thick and misty, it tasted spicy and was full of unknowing. Birds, ones he had never heard before were screeching wildly, like adrenaline, the kind that rushes through you when you feel the warm touch of the woman you love.

His eyes flittered as he arose from the damp mossy ground he laid upon. “This was a good shirt” he breathed.

This “good shirt,” though strange was in fact a good one; made in Sweden out of the softest imported cotton, and one out of two-hundred made in that style and color. The color was two shades of blue. The body was light blue zigzag striped like a polo, but the stitches were deep blue loops to match the loop hook buttons going down the front.

His lover always laughed at him when he wore it. She thought it was outrageous but insisted he wore it every time they go out. It made her smile and she admired the way he was proud of it.

Now the shirt was ruined, dirtied by the wet moss and muddy earth.

The back of his head pounded much like his heart. He raised his rough hand up to his head and looked around. He saw an opening in the tropical trees that led to the crashing ocean. The last thing he remembered was waterskiing with his friends. It was part of their vacation. The woman he loved was traveling with her friends so he went on ahead and traveled with his. They took their friend Jerry’s boat down to Florida and traveled all over the southern area of Florida and the Gulf. They all took a day off of site seeing to just goof off. They rented a couple of skis and went way south, about 100 miles, off Florida. They spent the day speeding around the water, the salty ocean spraying their faces and drying their mouths, turning their hands and feet into prunes and raisins.

As the sun started to set, a strange fog set upon the ocean. A kind of purple smoke; it was surreal. It became the aurora borealis of the ocean.

The group of friends decided this was a good opportunity for some entertainment. They decided they could take turns speeding in and out of the fog, feeling like they were zooming through the sky as they sped over the ocean.

When it was his turn, he went a little too far into the fog, thinking he was probably just going in circles and would end up back at the starting point. He then ran out of gas. He drifted a little while yelling for his friends, he didn’t fret until he started hearing his echo. He then tried listening for waves crashing on the shore to see if he had drifted toward Florida instead of away from it. He did in fact hear crashing waves but they were not where he thought they would be. He immediately thanked God for bringing him closer to Florida. Too bad it was the wrong thing to thank God for. He should have thanked god for bringing him closer to a place that would change him forever.

As all the memories rushed back to him he realized he should be looking for shelter and food, knowing he would be there for quite some time.

He got up, too quickly. He felt dizzy and the blood rushed from his head. As he started to walk he felt strange. He felt as though he weren’t alone, not that creepy kind of “someone’s following you” not alone, but that the island wasn’t deserted, that there was some other resident occupying the island. He tried not to think about it and instead focused on finding a shelter of some sort, or at least materials to make one.

He didn’t have to search for as long as he thought he would. After about an hour and five miles of walking he came across a cave, perfect to stay in for as long as he possibly could. After finding the marvelous shelter he went off to look for food.
This time he really didn’t have to go far. Only a few hundred meters from the cave was an oasis. It was beautiful. There was a large waterfall with flowers surrounding it, and tall fruit trees draping over the pool at the bottom.
He didn’t see her at first but there was a woman there. Not an old woman, but the young woman, you know, just hitting about 25 and not at all touched by any signs of aging. When he did see her he was speechless. Not that he had said much while he was there or had anything to say at the moment; he just had no breath, nothing at all to speak with, he couldn’t feel his body, he was gone, lost to the creature before him. Beautiful doesn’t even begin to describe her; no words possibly could. She was golden, not the kind of gold color you see in jewelry or even in the gold mines, but kissed by the sun golden. Her skin was glistening with drops of the island water, and her wild hair was shivering in the breeze. It floated, and danced around her face, adding onto the amazing indescribable beauty she possessed. She was wearing a green cloth that brightened her skin even more, something that seemed impossible to do. Everything was exposed and radiant except for the secrets, which her cloth covered. She had a perfect figure, lean and strong; she had lived on this island for many years he could see.
She noticed him quickly. She never expected seeing another person on the island. She had been there ever since she can remember; guided by an island guru, then, once he died she was on her own. But that was seventeen years ago, she had taken care of herself, not seeing anybody else for so long. It seemed impossible. She immediately fled into the jungle. If someone saw her it could mean danger. The guru had told her this about foreigners. They could be out looking for new places to colonize, and make money; words she had never herself understood but knew were of bad intentions. She burst out of the water and ran to the safety of the jungle. He didn’t seem like he was going to follow; he looked frozen. She still ran to the very back of her cave; he couldn’t know to go in there, maybe she might be lucky and he would even be afraid and stay as far away as possible. She could only hope.
He was definitely not going to stay away, not only was he extremely curious but that cave was his home for however long his stay on this island was.
After he collected his fruit, he ran back to his cave; setting his fruit up against one of the rock walls. He had that feeling again. That feeling that he wasn’t alone. He looked around the cave and saw her. She was standing in the back of the cave, as stiff as stone, in a very animal-like way. He approached her, knowing what he was going to say to her this time.
“You’re in my home.” She spoke before him. Her accent was thick, like the moist air of the island. He was shocked. Her voice made her even more beautiful than when he saw her. He reminded himself that he had to talk to her so he closed his mouth and inhaled deeply.
“Help” was all he could whisper. He cleared his throat and tried to speak again. “I’m sorry.” He cleared his throat again. “I have to get home. Help.” He sounded so desperate. Her eyes softened at his words. She understood immediately what he needed and wanted to help him off as quickly as possible. The sooner he left the safer she would be.
“Fire.” She spoke with that thick accent and once again he was completely vexed. “I will make one.” He was relieved she would help, so relieved he almost melted to a puddle on the ground.
That night after the fire the beautiful island creature took him out to the beach. She looked out into the fog and said with her beautiful voice, “The fog will be gone tomorrow. That is when you can leave.” He was completely overcome with joy and relief and sadness. He was happy to leave but he wanted to know more, to learn about this creature. Were there others? How did she get here?
He was also sad to leave a place so beautiful. The oasis, and the birds, and even the cave had a foreign beauty about them that he couldn’t describe. He had never seen anything like it back in Frostburg.
He wanted to learn the animal-like ways of the woman, the way she probably hunted and walked about the island. He wanted to see if he had that in him somewhere. Even if he had to pull it from the deepest part of him, he wanted to see if he had it.
But he couldn’t find that part of him now, the fog was going to go away, according to the island woman. He had to take this opportunity. The fog could come back, and maybe stay longer than before. He had to leave now while he had the chance.
When morning came around, he woke from the hard moist ground of the cave and looked out to the oasis. The water was running loudly and birds had begun their morning calls. The woman was perched on a rock at the mouth of the cave. She noticed he had rose and slithered off the rock to take him to the water.
“Come.” He was stunned, for maybe the last time, by her voice. He would miss that, even though his stay lasted only the short hours of a day. After recovering from the sound of her voice he obediently followed the creature to the beach.
“Swim. To the rock about a mile out. You will be close to home and won’t need my help.” He was sure that that was the last time he would hear her voice and he repeated what she had said in his head.
“Thank you.” His voice was a croaking whisper, like the first time he responded to her voice. She lifted her hand and placed it on the middle of his chest. He felt something. It was strange but he knew it from somewhere. He was suddenly filled with knowing. He knew things now, not that a scientist or mathematician would know, but things that only came from living wholly. He was grateful, so much so that it must have shown. She spoke once more, this time was her truly her last.
“You’re welcome.” This was said differently than all the other times she spoke. This was said through her hand, and her eyes. She never had to move her mouth. He heard her without her having to speak. He was shocked more now than he ever has been in his life. He never knew there was this much to learn. He never knew that this was even something possible to learn. It wasn’t taught in schools. He learned to connect his spirit to his body, and live his life however he wanted to live it.
He wasn’t sad about leaving the island now. He took what he was supposed to from the island and it was now time to go.





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This article has 8 comments. Post your own now!

LittleMissSunshine said...
Aug. 19, 2008 at 2:23 pm
So wonderful- I love it!
 
wassupp maxii said...
Aug. 19, 2008 at 4:46 am
ZOE!
i knew you were good, but i didn't know you were that good! i will have you know i did the same thing with my creative writing assignment, got all excited then did it way late the nigth before. but mine didnt turn out at all as good as this! really Zo, your super talented.
 
Satyam said...
Aug. 18, 2008 at 3:37 am
Wonderfully done Zoe! You have a real gift for words, metaphors,
 
pooka03038 said...
Aug. 17, 2008 at 3:37 pm
Zoe, I once read that a good writer always writes from the inside out not from the outside in. Your story certainly came from the "inside". Absolutly beautiful!!!
 
LILWHITEDOVE4257 said...
Aug. 16, 2008 at 1:43 pm
Zoe, I loved the writing and the story. You have done a great job. Keep up the great work and I sure hope you got an A on this story!!!
 
watercolorjen said...
Aug. 16, 2008 at 1:27 am
Great work Zoe! I love your ability to paint with words. And, like during the creation of a painting, you let the words flow like paint and let them take
charge. It's a little like magic when you
step back and see what came through you!
 
islandprincess23 said...
Aug. 16, 2008 at 1:05 am
OMG Zoe this was amazing I love it. You need to write more this is all I can say. I don't want to wreck anything by saying You need o embrace your writing, because when I read this I felt something that I felt only once before in the moment when reading about about a 16 year old boy jumping off a natural bridge in Maui. It that moment of hanging in the balance, in utter shock yet wouldn't dare to stop. All I can say it tell me more stories.
 
Marnie M. said...
Aug. 16, 2008 at 12:34 am
Excellent, insightful writing about male/female energies! Thoroughly enjoyed!
 
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