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I’m the first man ever to land on this beautiful azure blue world that’s almost four times as large as Earth. The bright yellow oceans are hard as steel. I look up to see 13 brilliantly shining moons illuminating the thick atmospheric sky where floating clouds of ammonia, methane, water ice, and pressures millions of times greater than on Earth, theoretically will squeeze all into liquid and then diamonds that sometimes fall as hail, and when they hit ground they sink to the core and rise again, polished and faceted by planetary pressure.
Enclosed in my craft, I can’t see outside, so I dress in heavy anti-pressure, ant-gravity gear and ease through the hatch. The blinding light of 13 moons reflects off of faceted surfaces etched into what appears to be stones.
I climb from the hatch and step onto a loose gravel like surface that gives way under my weight. I start to sink. In panic I grab my lifeline attached to the ship, but I stop sinking before I have to save myself.
I scoop up a glove full of the gravel and see it’s not gravel at all, but tiny diamonds. I’m almost blinded by the twinkling brilliance of their faceted lights. I rejoice because it’s true. Ices of methane and water are squeezed to carbon that turns to crystal lattices creating diamonds in the atmosphere.
There are more diamonds underfoot than in any mine back on Earth. One bucketful is all I’ll ever need. I look up and see a storm is brewing, and I see warning lights flashing around my ship, telling me I had better leave. I know I should, but diamonds forming in the sky is something I want to see. Maybe I can blast off before the planetary hail arrives.
Some of it will be as small as salt grains, and others as large as boulders. I’ve been told the diamonds’ cutting edges will perforate me. If I stay, I’ll be the first ever to see diamonds falling from the sky. my curiosity won’t allow me to board my ship and leave.
Brilliant light replicates throughout the sky. It isn’t falling snow, but diamond flakes reflecting starlight in the sky and on the ground. It blows into piles. I’m safe I know. The diamond snow doesn’t break through my suit, and I wait to fill another bucket with glittering pieces falling from the sky when it starts to hail diamonds bigger than my fist.
I watch the hail beat down onto my ship, and soon nothing remains. I bury myself in loose stones. The storm passes away and I pull myself out from under the diamonds that are almost dust, but were strong enough to protect my suit from getting punctured.
I have enough diamonds to buy the entire world. If only I had a way to get there.
As soon as she came into view, like lead falling from the sky, strange, unknown feelings and thoughts struck me. She changed my entire being. Apparitions of love and soft silk entered my day to day and changed my life. I found that extraordinary one, and my face turns red when I think of how my heart got caught, unprepared. It has always been cold and hard until now.
Harboring meanness and malice had kept my emotions bound in a strait jacket called life. Strife hardened my heart, shutting down any feelings other than anger and hate. If there’s a God I thought him cruel, for giving me a life where I went to dinner and watched movies alone. I thought maybe because I liked being with myself more than any other was the cause. Views like that vanished when I met her.
Too late for me now I know, but how it hurts my newfound heart, to recognize that I’ll never touch her silken skin, feel her soft hair, nor match her delicious lips to my famished ones, wishing to devour love like a starving man.
Seeing how much I missed when life passed me by without love for any other except my kids, brings me to my knees in anguish. Why did I take so long to see what could have been? My life is almost over and for once I delight in being with a woman, because feelings have softened my heart and mind. But why now and not before?
If there’s another life after this, I’ll be sure to find a cloud nine where I can show my hidden love. If I can’t, I don’t want to exist again in another time or place without what it took me so long to learn here on Earth, that God made a woman for every man. If only I had known when I was young and didn’t wait until my life had condensed to discover the splendid plan.
Blinding light spawns liquefied steel, like a volcano sending its molten core across the metal in front of my face. My eyes are covered with darkened glass. I only see flashes of burning white light that I have to judge by touch where to point and what to melt.
My fingertips guide the flame while constructing a sculpture. I follow Picasso’s design to create an original thing with wings who will sit in my yard with Boadicea my warrior queen made from cement and her dog Spot, constructed with materials like hers.
Images no one expects to see stand on my sandy desert lawn bordering a residential street. Thin, tall sculptures stretch to the sky and beyond. Cars jam on their brakes and stop at the sight. Even children stop to look and point. A little boy asks, “Can I look at the cool statues?” Unbiased judgment I couldn’t get anywhere else.
I can hardly wait to get a welder of my own. Maybe build an Eiffel Tower on my front lawn for the kids to admire and maybe climb along with the King Kong I’ll build too. Maybe I’ll sculpt the king and have him powered by the sun to light up at night so everyone can see where he climbs after dark.
What will my neighbors say, people ask. I don’t give a damn, is my reply, but I really do, and only design politically correct things to adorn my yard. Why I even turned my white queen brown when people protested a brown skinned girl being painted on a mural at a local school.
Surprising to me, she was enjoyed by many more than ever before once she changed her color. Can it be that color only makes a difference if it’s on someone’s skin?
“What’s the charge?” the female judge asked the clerk of the court.
“Crimes against nature.”
“Be more specific please?”
“Rape and murder,” your honor.
“Guilty or not?” the judge asked the accused man who stood as though abused.
He raised his head and manacled hands as high as the chains would allow, folded them as in prayer, and said aloud, “Your honor, it’s not my fault. Mother Nature is to blame. She’s the one who made me what I am without any exam. She made my sex drive so strong, I can’t resist when I see a woman. Mother Nature doesn’t give a damn about any manmade tools they claim are rules.
“To call nature, mother, is misleading, because it’s not heeding the fact that though nature naturally sounds normal, I say what she does to our world should be considered a sublime crime against mankind. People like you who enforce the natural law are in awe of her and allow her to claim in Mother Nature’s Name, that man commits crimes against her.
“Stop to think what nature has designed. It isn’t in the name of love. Insects capture others and keep them alive to lay their eggs inside the thing while still alive, and when the larvae hatch, they’ll have a movable feast under their feet. A torture like this should certainly be a crime and punished like any other committed by a mother.
“What’s so good about nature I want to know? If I followed my nature, I’d rob and kill to fill my needs. Doing that is more natural than to wake to an alarm and work all day long in a field, a factory or someplace worse. I naturally kill things to eat, to wear, and sometimes just for fun. Mother Nature gave me the keys to that door. So, I say, I can’t be guilty for doing what comes naturally. Or did she only give me this idea to turn the screws when I choose to follow her dictates? Couldn’t, wouldn’t the planet be a better place if Mother Nature had a father to show her how to run the world?”
“You’re as guilty as can be,” the judge said, “and if you think Mother Nature can be cruel, wait till you see what I have in store for you. You’ll be taken to a hospital where you’ll become a woman.
“You should have known better than to rant against nature!” said the judge, “and now you’re about to discover why there’s a large woman in charge.”
To prove god wouldn’t have permitted me to commit the crime that carried a death sentence. I couldn’t say where I had been when it happened. The woman I spent that time with would make God content. Married as a trophy to another man, I vowed when it all began, that I’d never tell she slept with me while he was away. Death before dishonor was tattooed in my brain and on my arm. A constant reminder that I was obliged to do no harm.
Twenty years in a four by eight space waiting to be murdered by the state for a crime I didn’t commit. Though the time had come for my life to end, the one I protected never came to save me from the state assassin paid to do the job no doctor would.
Nightmares often came of me being trapped in a cell and then strapped to a table while eyes that never smiled, but filled with hate, as though I was unwanted freight, watched as that state sponsored murderer stabbed my arm with needles full of Sodium Thiopental, Pancuronium, and Bromide Potassium Chloride.
If I were lucky I’d inhale in despair, become unconscious and wouldn’t be aware of the sting traveling through my veins, setting my nerves on fire, burning me with industrial pain. If I stayed awake after I was injected, I’d be paralyzed and wouldn’t be able to move my mouth nor breathe, and only a tear would show how much I endured while waiting for my heart to stop its habitual beat.
This procedure is deemed too inhumane for animal use, because it’s better to hang them in a noose, but for condemned criminals in thirty-five states it’s okay. The chemicals are in such demand that all states have to wait in line to get the drugs needed to kill. It’s hard for me to accept as true that people discount this state-inflicted pain, only because a person, once convicted of a crime becomes something less than a man, not worthy of belonging to the human race, nor deserving to be treated better than a dog. Not worthy of being protected from pain that is against the law to inflict on any animal, but a criminal is considered lower than that.
Even though I could save myself from such a horrible fate by telling the truth, I’d keep my vow to remain silent. Labeled by society as a murderer and a criminal deserving death, I knew I was better than those paid by the state to take my life.
As they strapped me onto the execution table, I held my arm high so all could read what my tattoo said, and I didn’t tell the warden that the night the crime I was convicted of committing, I was with his wife.