On being a dune

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I am dust, swirling in a juice glass on a balcony; the sunshine exposing my deformed presence.

This glass looks empty from where you sit but it is not. I am swirling with tens of thousands of other dust particles.

There…over there…flakes from a Tanzanian elephant; forest fungi from Brazil. Oh god, look… the dreaded Ebola spore cosying-up to soot.

How did I end up here? My glory days gone, my presences minuscule, meaningless and unwelcome.

It was not always so.

Billions of years ago I was a glistening wall of granite rising 2000 meters above the sea. I was impenetrable, a monster mountain shimmering in the day’s light and casting my shadow so far over the land that even you could not trace my limits.

I was bare and cold, beholding to no one. My arms reached for the heavens, eagles fought for a place on my summit, my peaks dominated the sky.

I don’t know how long it took, maybe a couple billion years. How time flies! But I noticed my glacier-laden parts began to move. It was as if everything started to droop.

That pesky wind always whistling around my ankles nipping at my crevices. The incessant whistle morphed into ear-splitting screams. I became furious and believed vibration would throw the wind off my back.

Anger only made things worse. My sharp-peaks rounded and the rain got under my variegated streaks.

It didn’t take long, only several million short years, and I disintegrated into rugged rocks then splintered stones, then polished pebbles.

There were good years, too…

I spent a million years on being a dune. Rusty-red, moving slowly across the land, baked by day cooled at night. The wind whistled over my back pushing me south, south…those were the days!

But now my life is over; it ended in this glass among strangers skillfully competing for dying fame.

Once, carved defiant and everlasting; now, demolished to dust.

All rights reserved by Lesley Lababidi. To copy or re-produce photography and/or writings, written permission from Lesley Lababidi is required.

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