Prologue: Death Rhythm
September 31st : Rhythm of Death
(Read to Rhythm)
The blurring scream, high pitched and wan, from alarm it did come from. A slender hand broke out the sheets. It pounded blindly fast and lithe. iPhone on table soon was silenced-- Timba, the drums go cold.
But rhythm soon would scarcely cease. The falling sky drummed a tap; twice and thrice, and hundred more. Cascading rain won’t cease for sleep, but gently prods the world to wake. And so our girl got out her bed; her name is Lin, or so she said. In truth Lindis was it full, but hear now shower steam and drizzle.
Like the world she woke and bathed; outside the rain jumped and played. Clitter clatter from above, it added meter to the day.
As she sat across from Pat, the man who joined her mother now, she sat and stared in groggy fog. But beyond the thunder call. With cymbalic bass the world did ring, the unseen conductor adding to the symphony.
Outside the stop, bus soon about, the whine of cars joined the bout. Like whining strings they almost seemed; the conductor’s delight in their offering.
And Lin with book above her head, ignored the world and acted dead. No hope to find in her sight, rote actions played out her life. But still the music swelled, all a world caught up in bells.
At school the clock acted metronome, the cadenced strum to which all acted. Teacher’s voice a flute chord acted.
As class dismissed Lindis yawned, to locker quick she did so jog.
“Hey Lin,” a boy did say. Her friend, Kane, like er’y day.
She smiled and hemmed, every world left unspoken. What’s to say to an old friendship unbroken. Many aquaitance she perhaps did have, but Kane her friend.
But all must break, you soon shall see. Even music crescendos and enters a lee. Life is just a rhythm; life is just a rhyme. What comes next? More of the same?
She visited the book store, no clubs for her. She tried them all and found them a bore. So mused through the bookshelves and ran past the classics. She loved Little Women, Frankenstein, and The Count of Monte Cristo, but those were all old news and she wanted more. No romance, no real life, something more.
Into fiction she fled, into science and fantasy looking for something that suited her fancy. Herbert was great and Asimov stiff. She had read all of Lewis, Sanderson, and Gaiman. Perhaps some of King? His well never dry. She saw a new book on the shelf: “Syche: The Dark Element” looked like pure trash. With three books in hand she checked out and she though: I’ll read them tonight, I’ve got so much TV to watch.
The rain tapped its beat and the thunder replied, the humans swayed to the machine’s reply. It was time the conductor saw, to extinguish this farce and to harry the living. Nary an hour, crossing the street, downtown Chicago, light on her feet. A gray pickup with balded brakes skidded and squeaked.
As poor Lin bleed to death on that fall September street, between East and Cornell her heart did thus cease. The conductor conflicted but pleased with the wave of his hand, gave the rain permission to stay its cold hand. The thunder quieted and for a second all was still. The music had ended. But never the thrill.
For you see this was not metaphor but a literal thing.
The Conductor, a capital “C” in his name, looked down on the streets and planned his next game. A new rhythm and song, a new beat in the dance. He was sad at her passing but giving new chance.
The beat broke then. What beat exists without border? For the next month would be chaos, a world without order The world may move to a beat and this city to his music, but death was greater and death had its due.
And now you ask what great loss is there? She seems so boring, prude, and blue. Sadly that’s what people are. They are dull; they are boring; and they could be so much more. But this is the story, one of becoming. How one can find passion, friendship, and glory. How one girl from Chicago became a person.
So quiet your head. Silence your phones. And listen to cacophony, no sound. This is the story of Lindis, death, and our song.