Against all odds, I stand to inspire faith
O. Henry’s the last leaf is a short story that I remember reading ages ago. I was a brat in school when I first came across this tale. I memorized it and in time, I aced that English exam. The story remained in memory and as I clocked mileage in life, I came to understand the beauty of this wonderful story. The last leaf.
Today, I find myself in a spot where I see this tale in a brand new light. As a blogger who fancies narrating tales through diverse perspectives, I’ve come to enjoy writing tales as seen through eyes which usually don’t have a say in the general scheme of things as far as tales go. I’d like to view this tale through three distinct eyes.
The Leaf :
As a work of art from a dying man, I see myself as an object of purpose. I was brought to life in pursuit of life. Of course I do feel precious and good about myself for I did inspire a will to live. How many of us are presented with an opportunity as special and meaningful as that?
Yeah, I was drawn to near life like perfection. Yet, I can’t help but wonder at the obviousness of the truth. Drawn to a near life like perfection and yet a tad whisker away from life itself. I do wonder about what’s next. Immortalized by purpose and cast to a lifetime of make-believe pretend.
As I cast my eyes across the world around me, I am but amused at the pursuit of people that surround me. I see a glimpse of humans consumed by their pursuit of meaning and happiness in their lives. It is that pursuit that both keeps them alive and at the same time distracted away from the very life that they are in pursuit of. While here I stand, fulfilled of purpose and now left with no further reason to exist. I will remain as a testament to one man’s unconditional love and care. I will for ever exist as an extension of his sacrifice. I will forever remain robbed of a self and an identity of my own.
The smiles of satisfaction keep me happy today. That happiness is of course short lived.If lucky, humanity would believe blind in the power of what I stand to represent. It would reduce me to a shaman trinket, an artifact of blessed omen. In time, when I’ve witnessed my fair share of life and death, I’d probably be jaded with the conflict of faith and will in humans that I behold. I’m forever left to witness in silence this state of will.
Maybe I’m blessed to see that struggle for life. Maybe I’m cursed to see that succumbing to fear. Time would probably unravel the odds to me.
Johnsy aka Joanna
Ah, the sweet cold embrace of death surrounds me. I can’t help but find that courage and strength to carry on. There is no fight left in me anymore. I can see the curtains now. They are set to close down upon the stage that I call my life. I had dreams. I anchored wishes and desires in my heart. Tonight, I see the decimation of that heart. I wish there was a god who generously offered miracles. I wish there was a sign that would tell me if my time was up. Maybe the leaves would announce my exit from this life.
I smiled a defeated smile. I must sound desperate and childish to pin my hopes on a tree of leaves. It’s not about a blind faith or forced superstition that rules my heart. I’ve seen that look on the people’s eyes. I see myself in my grave in their eyes. I’m too scared to will upon a life. Maybe this is the end and I’m struggling to come to terms with it. Of all the prayers that I’ve prayed, of all the requests turned down which were screamed upon deaf ears, I no longer have the courage to pray again tonight.
Maybe I’m not god’s favorite child. How could I be? God left me at the foothills of death. Why would she see this as a befitting end to my time on this mortal plane? Maybe I should have been better. Maybe I should have prayed harder and lived a life of a little more purer white. I don’t think I have it in me anymore. My sins have consumed me. My illness is my sentence. I shall embrace it with a smile. I’ll try.
I’m leaving it to the universe now. This is a call that I no longer dare to make. If the leaves survive, maybe I shall too. If they perish, maybe I shall with it. So be it.
“Ha ha ha ha ha ha” , I laughed in the comfy confines of my walls. I couldn’t help but laugh at the irony of life here. I squandered my dreams away. I braved to dream but could never bear to watch them burn. I lived a life of despair of what ifs. What if this world would never recognize my work of art? What if I was another failed artist? What if all I had to look forward to were jibes and ridicule?
I’ve lived my life in fears. I don’t think Johnsy deserves that in her heart. I’ve wasted my youth to thoughts that were never mind. My youth was spent on opinions that I never got to hear, but repeated them loud in my head of things I imagined. I laughed at the irony in the comfy confines of my walls.
An artist dead and living while another was struggling to stay alive in death.
If all it takes is a leaf to bring her life, so be it. I shall give it my best shot. I shall breathe my life into it so that it inspires a will to live in her heart.If it does work, maybe I’d deserve the place I’ve always wished that I had always had. If my art fails, well, it sure doesn’t change the death that I’m already enduring.
Last leaf. A simple tale of triumph of life over death. A celebration of life.