Tag: Epiphany

EPIPHANY: Kolya’s Epiphany By Sally Madison

Word: EPIPHANY

Words: 465

Kolya’s Epiphany

By Sally Madison

 

The soldier had shaken the bars so hard that the horses lifted their heads at being disturbed and gave a faint puff from their nostrils.   Kolya had covered their heads and they soon were soothed back to sleep.  Kolya grabbed his chest and sank to the ground, his eyes winced, his jaw clenched in pain.  The ancient man could take no more strain. Kolya whispered to Alexandria,  “I have often wondered why the Lord has kept me alive all these years, when all of my people have gone: my wife, your grandfather, all of the others that I knew.  Only you three ladies are left to comfort me in my old age, but now I know.  When I was a young boy – a rom, to my adopted gypsy family – I swore to myself that I would get even with the Turk savages who destroyed my village and killed my family.  I have reached an epiphany. My life’s work is complete.  I have avenged my family and helped save my daughter, Alma, and you ladies from those savages.  My life is complete.”

 

Alexandria wrapped her arms around Kolya, rocking him slowly and soothingly, as tears welled in her eyes.  “What price do we pay for our deception?” she thought, as she began remembering her childhood, and this man who had been such a large part of her life.  Now, this man, who had sacrificed his eternal salvation, by committing a great sin to save their lives, appeared to be dying in her arms. She wanted to scream; she wanted to cry; she wanted control, but she could only hold this man who had been her friend and protector all of her life.

 

Alma held her father’s hand.  Fear and hope alternated on her face, as she denied reality. Natalia dipped the hem of her apron in the jug of water, and gently swabbed Kolya’s wrinkled face.  All attention to the sounds of the soldiers upstairs was dismissed, as the true drama of life unfolded before their eyes.

 

In flashbacks of his childhood he remembered his family’s Orthodox Church, Kolya whispered, “Forgive me Father, as you forgave the thief on the cross at Jesus’ side.  I have sinned, but now I repent.  Lead, and I follow,” as he tried to crossed himself, right to left. He continued, “Hail Mary, Mother of God…”  Alexandria began working her fingers over her chain of  beads. Barely breathing, she whispered, “Hail Mary, Full of Grace….” letting her own faith take over the final moments.

 

With eyes closed, Kolya allowed God into his being to prepare him to go home.  In his mind’s eye he could see his wife, mother, father, siblings, gypsy friends and his best friend, Alexandria’s grandfather.  Kolya smiled, this was his time. Peace had overcome him.

EPIPHANY: Three Kinds of Love By Peg Scarano

Word:  Epiphany

Word Count:  406

Three Kinds of Love

By Peg Scarano

 

I do not attend church regularly, but I did go this past weekend.  The homily spoke to me.  The deacon talked about the three kinds of love: Love of family – passionate and deep; brotherly love – respect and concern for friends, neighbors, coworkers and people in general; love of God – Whoever or whatever your God may be – He/She could be the moon or the sun.  And I had an epiphany.

 

Our country and the world are a mess.  Our federal, state and local governments are run by politicians who have lost their way.  Our children’s faces are buried in their iPads and phones where they play war games in fantasy worlds.  How are they ever going learn about life and love?  And they are our future.  There is ISIS, North Korea, Syria, Nigeria and Putin infiltrating and threatening not only our country, but the entire world.  Muslims, Christians, Islamics, Hindis, Buddhists and atheists are all at odds.  The North and the South; the black and the white; law enforcement and both black and white; to kneel or not to kneel; which is the appropriate bathroom for us to use; respect or no respect; love or hate; sense or nonsense; good or evil; fake news or real news; and the list goes on and on and on.

 

All of this leaves me bewildered, confused, scared, anxious and troubled when it should be as easy as 1-2-3 kinds of love.  Why does it always have to be black or white? Why can’t there be any gray – a blend of compromise and tolerance?  Why can’t we all just respectfully communicate with each other:  country to country; democrat to republican to independent; man to woman and face to face instead of always taking one step forward and two steps back?  Why can’t we all think before we speak?  And why can’t we think with an open, rational mind instead of the “I’m always right” mentality?  What happened to the notion of compromise?  Have all of these concepts died or simply drifted away from our intellectual senses due to lack of use?

 

My epiphany was simple.  We need to focus on the three kinds of love – become a kinder, gentler people capable of listening, feeling compassion and caring about each other and mankind as a whole instead of being selfish, arrogant, cruel, egotistical and heartless human beings.  We are brittle and hard and on the verge of breaking into a million pieces.

 

EPIPHANY: Epiphany B.A. Sarvey

Word: EPIPHANY

Word Count 500

Epiphany

B.A. Sarvey

Her epiphany came slowly—not in a thunder of fireworks, like that sort of thing is portrayed, but creeping and curling around her like whispers of mist off the creek on a cold morning. She almost ignored it nudging into her periphery.

Part of her had suspected. Part of her did not want it to be true. But there it was—what other explanation could there be?

Busying herself in the kitchen—dabbing at the coffee ring on the counter, rinsing her cup, washing and drying her hands—she did all the things she did habitually. But today, she began to think about each step, from pushing herself up from the table, to turning on the water, dampening the sponge, jabbing at the partially dried spot. She could almost see the realization seeping into her brain, like water soaking into the sponge. Every day. Every. Day. Call it what you will—routine, habit. Doing what needs to be done. The rut had been of her own making. Useless to blame someone else. And now she knew.

It is only my own inability to move forward that holds me back.

The force of this realization nearly knocked her to the floor. Staggering back to her chair, dish towel still in hand, she lowered herself and sat. Inhaling shakily, she held her breath for a count of nineteen before she needed to exhale. Counting helped balance her thoughts, allowing her to breathe normally. Allowing her to think.

So much time wasted. No, don’t think about that. Don’t think about the hours spent—the years spent pursuing, clinging to, someone else’s dream. Long after the dreamer was gone.

Once upon a time, she had interests. A dream of her own. Now, she barely remembered it. Was certain it had been faulty or unrealistic or unworthy of pursuit. Otherwise, why hadn’t she pursued her dream? A vague recollection worked its way past her reverie: Someone ridiculing her vision, demeaning her ideas, dismissing her abilities.

Humiliation. Was that why she had given up? Given in to the status quo, allowed her future to be chained to someone else’s whim? Expectation drove her. Was driving her still. Whose? A place for everything, everything in its place—that hadn’t been her. But it was now. Why? Didn’t need to anymore. No one was left to prevent her from doing, or not doing, whatever she wanted. I hold myself back.

Not going to make the Impressionists show at the gallery. Really wanted to see it. Too many things needed doing. She began to tuck her longing into her pocket, but stopped. ‘Inability to move forward,’ she mouthed, the words tangling on her tongue. Inability.

And then, another epiphany. She could erase ‘inability’ if she tried. “Move forward.” The thought was nearly crippling. With effort, she tossed the dish towel onto the counter. “Paintings.” She reached for the cookie jar, removed a fistful of cash. “A café luncheon.” Nausea twisted her stomach. “Maybe not. Maybe next time. Baby steps.”