Image of Short Fiction Contest - 2020
Image of Short Story

The whistles and chirps of song birds float in on the cool breeze that crosses through my window. With the curtains drawn apart and window fully open, the sound travels on swift morning gusts.

My loyal companion rests besides me, radiating body heat; not too warm, just enough to ground me. His breaths steady, the occasional rise of his chest provide the only movement in the otherwise still scene.

I lightly scratch his furry ears, behind them, and around his neck. Right in the places I knew would hold him here longer.

It was true peace. The half lidded eyes betrayed him. The soft yawn betrayed me.

The bed was warm, the blankets soft, and the position perfect. The small alcove I’ve created for myself encompassed comfort as it always have.

This moment is why we live. We constantly search for this satisfaction; actively pursue lifestyles that leave not one moment of pause. But it’s in these unexpected moments of pause where we can truly find peace.

It really isn’t something that we can look for or pursue. We cannot chase its trail or track its prints in the forest debris. We cannot search for it; as it does not lie in the stacks of paper that overflow our desks and cascades into our anxieties.

It simply find us.

Slowly catches up, and when it finally descends upon us, it’s like the warm hug of a familiar embrace. The embrace of an old friend, the embrace of a home cooked meal, the embrace of a well worn hoodie. It whispers to us.

“Be here.”
“Be present.”
“Can you see me now?”
“Is this what you have been searching for?”

The tinkling sound of its laughter rains down upon us, surrounding us with playful mirth.

“Open your eyes to my marvelous joy!”
“Search no longer, and once you stop, you’ll find that I will find you.”

It’s in the pauses between breaths, the silence before a sunrise, a gaze held a moment too long. A zone of “in betweens,” and “not yets.”

It pleads, “Don’t be so quick to jump from here to there.”
It advises, “Savor the transitions as well. It’s just as worthy as the main acts.”
It suggests, “Listen carefully and maybe you’ll hear it; maybe you’ll see it.”

The breathy laughter, a youthful smile, a beckoning wave.

Now go, and let yourself be interrupted.