Hello once again and this time we have a piece that’s apart of something I made up just the other day called The Shape Series. Yes, I suddenly got the urge to write a series of short stories with shapes as a central image, all of which are dis-segmented or in other words, not connected to one another. But I did decide which of my many longer short stories I want to continue and thus that will come out soon as well. So for now here’s a short story about the past, about the future, and about coming to terms with the world. Here you go, “Shape Of A Cube.”
A cube represents strength. I walked with a small cube in my pocket. It fit my hands nicely and despite its size, didn’t do much to bother me while it was in my pocket. It was a wooden cube that was never painted on, and thus it retained a light brown color and a smooth texture all around. It was one of the things that I carry with me every day. I’ve always carried it with me since I got it from my friend. It’s always something that I’ve come to treasure. It’s my own little cube.
But the world isn’t a cube. The world can never be a cube, because the world is unbelievably round. And it’s funny that at one point, we thought that the world was a cube. We thought that if we were to walk forward for an indefinite amount of time, that we would be travelling an endless array of land and sky that no one would have ever traversed before. We thought we would fall. But we didn’t. We kept walking forward expecting something to come, expecting to prove something, but we didn’t expect to fall. That’s what happens when you roll around a sphere for too long, you fall.
I walked across the grassy plains with the sky hanging high above me, and the sounds of birds waking up filling my ears. I dodged the low hanging branches as they hung near my face, and made sure to watch my way for any rocks. Once I was through with making my way into the forest, I found myself at a small clearing. I didn’t know how large this clearing was, but at that point, it couldn’t be called a clearing. It was like its own little world inside of the forest.
I was surprised that it had been left undisturbed for so long. Miles, perhaps, of green grass just swayed in the wind with nothing at its company. It was lonely even. I shook my head upon these thoughts and continued forward. Even though this was my own little enclave, there was one obscurity that I allowed to exist. After all, it was something that I made, for someone whom I care for very much. I walked up to the middle of the large grassy clearing and smiled at what I saw. I gently lowered my hand to touch the top of it, and traced the curve that it made. It was very rough, for good reason. I then lowered myself again and looked at the words that were engraved upon the material. I smiled at it before even reading the words since I knew very well who wrote those poorly scrawled words. I traced my fingers on those scrawls, remembering every stroke and every bit of strength that was used to etch them in. They were very faint now, but I didn’t need to try very hard to know what those words said, or what they meant. I smiled at that too.
I pressed my fingers into the indents of the words, and began retracing them, making new words appear in my mind, and making new meaning towards them. So much has changed since those words were first etched and uttered, and so much has been made new. The person for whom those words were directed will never be able to hear or see what changes the world has brought along. But the person who cannot hear or see those changes, wouldn’t mind for as long as those changes do not bring conflict or strife, then he will be happy. Unfortunately, it is only a surface lie that the changes the world has brought is not detrimental to those living. Apathy should never be used to police the populace, but so much apathy is among the veins of modernism that it is inevitable. I’ve come to detest such a world, but such a world is one that I cannot escape, and so I live everyday knowing that I am a detestable person. That much isn’t a problem for the person for whom the words written on the material are for. That person is a much more benevolent person than I could ever be. And yet, those who have a voice seem to ever be drowned out in the mist of overbearing capitalism that floods the world, and seemingly falls off into a pool of anathema.
I looked down at the base of where I was to see that grass had begun growing and stretching towards the words. I knelt down to pluck out the grass with as much strength as I could muster in my constitution. Once it was relatively clear, I displaced some of the dirt and rocks at the base, and touched my palm onto the ground. I felt the warmth of what was beneath exude into my hands, and I imagined every single bit of the memory that was held there. I gave a short prayer, and then stood back up. I looked up into the sky, and I noticed that the clouds were beginning to form together. It reminded me of that day. The day when this was created. It also rained that day.
I came here when I was just a little girl. But that isn’t fair to who I was with. My uncle carried the coffin for me all the way into the forest. At first, I didn’t know where I was going to end up, but I knew that I wanted the coffin buried in a place where he would be happy, and in a place where I can be happy. I wanted him to rest knowing that he’ll never be disturbed, or that he’ll never have to worry others. My uncle was the only one who helped me get that across to everyone there, but, I didn’t know where to go. And I knew that the coffin was very heavy, even for my uncle, and so I desperately paraded across the forest in hopes of finding some kind of sanctum. And that’s when I stumbled upon the clearing. I yelled for my uncle to come quickly, and once he did, he was just as amazed as I was. We brought it up, and then he began digging. We were half way done burying the coffin when rain began dripping onto my head. I remember looking up to see that the clouds were formed together, and that the sky was gray. It started off as a light drizzle, but then it began coming down and drowning away my hair. Once we were done, I etched in the words as fast as I could, and followed my uncle out. I caught a cold that day.
I didn’t want to remain here as it rained, and so I picked myself up, and looked at the words once again. I let my eyes rest onto the material, and then I looked down, at where we had buried it. I felt around my pockets, and then smiled as the wooden cube tried to poke into my fingers. I rummaged inside my pant pockets, and then took it out. I let it gleam in the small sunlight still remaining, and then spun it in my hands. It reminded me of him, not because he had made it for me, but because it was simple. It was a shape that had six faces, all of which were shaven and sanded to give off a grainy texture. It was tough, and yet fragile. I could spin the cube for as long as my days, and it would still remain the same. It was unchanging and never falling. One point led to another and each vertex in a way was connected to one another. It was a cube, plain and simple. But that cube to me, meant more than surface area and volume. That cube to me, was his meaning to mine. A drop of water splattered onto the surface, and when I looked up, I smiled. It wasn’t raining. Not yet. But, even then, it wouldn’t fall. It would go back up, and recycle itself, put itself back into the system. Just like a cube, never faltering.