K’s Crow


His name was simple enough, so he thought of himself as K. He liked Kafka, though Kafka was not what his K stood for. It didn’t matter what it stood for. It stood. That’s what counted. More than once he wondered, where do we go once we’re gone? If not anywhere, if it is indeed from life to blank, where was nature’s balance in that?  Carl Sagan said something about the universe being organized. Is it so unlikely there are manifestations of nature we are incapable of imagining? Why not? How can that not be true? And who are we to assume ours is the best vantage point from which to decide the matter? Humble up, folks.

K’s head found itself busy with thoughts like these from time to time. Old enough now to worry about how much time he had left, a clarity had begun to emerge. Could the point of us simply be the contribution of our life as a whole, and then, that’s it. It seemed out of balance to him.  Why should Hitler receive the same fate as Gandhi? Is there really a conflict of good and evil? If not in those words, certainly there is a battle between healthy and unhealthy?

Wasn’t there something in the bible about a rich man having about as much chance of getting into heaven as a camel has of getting through the eye of a needle? The older you get, the more questions you have, is what K believed, at least for himself.

All this led to Alice, this woman who had once captivated him, and seemed to digest who he was almost instantly. The array, accuracy, and potency of the armor he had built up over six decades plus was acutely formidable, and it found no threat to respond to in Alice. K knew if he was asked what he loved about Alice he wouldn’t know how to answer with precision. It’s like asking what was it you loved about Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, the only fair answer one can muster in a moment like this is so say, “Where to begin.” Then, stop talking.

Early afternoon, an exquisite blue cloudless sky, not steel blue, but all a powder-soft velvety blue.

A crow arced across the blue sphere like a God.