Quick Tales 2: The Rocking Horse
Quick Tales is basically flash fiction, tiny short stories. Mostly inspired by pictures. Mostly less than thousand, sometimes even less than five hundred words. The Rocking Horse was written in less than half an hour on the back of a notebook in a boring class. I like to think of it in tones of black, white and red.
Any theories on what the girl could be? Leave me a comment to let me know:)
The inspiration for this story. Of course, I
The sculpture is by:
Santa Fe College
Found objects, paint
The Rocking Horse
The rocking horse is a gift.
It comes to the Care Well Orphanage for Girls packed in a large cardboard box. It bears the name of the little blind girl, arriving exactly at midnight on her birthday, and a note saying “a companion for your adventures,” in bright purple ink. There is no return address.
Similar gifts have made their way to the little blind girl on occasions. Last Christmas, she received a bunch of flowers no one really recognized. They were the purest black, just the shade of her sightless dark eyes. Last birthday, a nondescript grey box arrived, containing a single hand mirror, embellished with jewels and made of oxidized metal.
The nuns who run the orphanage always hand the gifts to the girl immediately, never coveting them, although they wonder if the sender doesn’t realize that he’s sending gifts to a blind person. They’ve thought of writing to him, only he had never provided a return address. And now the rocking horse sits in the playroom, dark as ebony, ruby-eyed, the wood at his base carved to resemble playful curly white clouds. It is stunning; something out of a beautiful dark dream.
The nuns lead the little blind girl to the rocking horse, describing it to her in detail, down to the white tip of his wooden tail. The little blind girl is allowed to sit on it for as long as she wishes, and sit on it she does, rocking silently, little head pressed against the top of the horse’s head as a princess might caress her beloved stallion.
The nuns smile watching her, sighing that some sunshine exists for the child born into darkness, and leave her to play.
Alone in the playroom, the little blind girl looks into the ruby eyes of the black horse, and smiles a secret smile.
As the horse rocks, she is flying through jewel-colored forests, deserts desiccated by years of sun, her feet skimming the crest of white waves close to a golden beach. She rises above the clouds, dodging lightning as it zaps close to her, purple and fiery and elemental. She laughs as an endless field of stars opens above her, the moon shining down in its white-silk glow. She shivers as rain and hail soak her as she flies above a city with colored spires rising to the sky.
She rocks and rocks and rocks, and with each movement, she is in a new place, a new dream, not all of them her own.
It is her favorite birthday gift ever, even better than the mirror that lets her see herself in a different getup every time she stares at it, even better than the flowers that she’d hidden under her bed, the black flowers that never wilt and smells exactly of home and winter and caramel.She breathes a thank you to the horse, and then calls for a nun to lead her into the darkness of the mortal world, a world that is not for her eyes, which can behold only wonder.