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Paul Day Paul Day
Recommendations: 14

The Eyes of a Child

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She had a friend.

This story is from my book "Glass House"

The eyes cast a slight gaze. The waterless pupils stare straight ahead. They stopped stinging hours ago. Flies test the warmth of the sticky salty crust in the corner. The lid no longer shuts to warn them off. A stain of dry mud has formed a crust along the brow. The skin, once brown has turned a pale blue. Every now and then the left eye twitches, but it means nothing. The child lays still on the burning sand. There is a shallow, rhythmic rasping emanating through partly open lips.  It is a struggle that belies an unwillingness to live. The heat has cracked the lips. They would bleed if it wasn’t for the fact the blood has congealed.

The sound of quiet sobbing can be heard from a tent a little way off. His mother has left him to the sand and to the sun. She knew he would not see out the day. She mourns already for she knows in a moment his breathing will stop. A month ago this same small boy could be seen running and playing, trying hard to make the most of his pathetic life. Subsisting off the scraps from the local dump.

One day the kids had found a deflated football which they stuffed from goose feathers and stitched up with some string they also found. This boy had joined them and kicked it around all day, sending it between two branches once, before raising his hands in joyous victory.

Now he lay, an empty shell, a death, waiting for the right moment. A moment that would soon see his soul released from the grip of poverty and disease, to fly amongst the Angels. The sobbing stopped and careful hands lifted a limp body to carry it away out of the village.  His eyes were still open, but there was no more life in them now. His small arms swung from left to right as he was carried away to eternity.

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