Sunday, August 7, 2016

Creative Writing #23 - Cain: An Alternative History



"What cannot be said will be wept" - Sappho

Cain: An Alternative History

His tunic, now dampened by the messy dew of the garden, clings to his chest as he stands in the dawn’s dingy light. The heavy, wet air rises in thick clouds, drowning the nighttime’s struggles in a layer of foggy solemnity.

Beat by beat, his burning heart returns to a steady pace and the primality of his tense body gives way to exhausted surrender—his skin glistening with sweat and sweet water, mixed with the crimson of his brother’s veins.

His head drops and his eyes meet the body at his feet: his brother’s face is finally stripped of helpless terror, its features shaped by that ironic peacefulness of death. As the man begins to drag the body through his garden, a sprouting of white lilies from the valley—Mary’s Tears—tumble from the murdered man’s limp hand and a gust of warm wind surges across the terrain.

The Earth begins to tremor—rocks splintering with screams. The heavens, moaning, fade into a penal darkness and the surrounding woodlands explode in hellish cacophony. Paralyzed by the Earth’s violent revolt, the man drops the body, his face turning as deathly white as his shepherd brother’s. A frigid fear overwhelming the heat of his murderous passion.

A foul stench saturates the air. The putrid smell of decay. His gardens—his life’s work, his offering. They are blackening, shriveling, rotting. A wailing rain passes over the valley and a large snake retreats from the scorched soil.

The Winds howl with holy anger, “Where is your brother?”

Shuddering, the man’s entire body collapses in prostrated repentance. Mute with sorrow, the killer weeps, his wordless sobs nonetheless crying: “I have sinned.”