Every child is a story/ Felici (because I was torn between these two titles :)

Felici you’re a bird

A beautiful beautiful bird

You’re happiness

You’re love

There is no limit to you

You are our story

Our love.

I never saw things this way until today. I was walking along 5th avenue, whistling away with my cap tipped to a side. It was a good day, a good sunny day, and every one was out. I was on my way to the department store where I worked my day job. Just as I dropped my suitcase in the locker room I saw this little girl peeping from a corner of the room. I double checked to be sure because why would a child be in the locker room, in a dark hidden place… “hey little one I said, what are you doing there?” she swiftly hid her face in her arms and I curiously had to go meet her where she was.

I stooped down with my face before hers and gently removed her palms from her face. She was the most beautiful little girl I’d ever set my eyes on. I was taken aback for a good number of seconds and couldn’t find the words to say. She looked at me, searching my face, my eyes almost as if she was digging into my soul and a part of me that I’d repressed for the longest time.

When I finally found the words, I asked for her name. That’s the first thing you do when you meet someone yeah. She said as subtly as the touch of a feather “Felici”. I tried the name on my tongue, feeling it’s weight. It felt light and breathless “Felici”. Finally I said “that’s a nice name you got little one”. I went on to ask how she got here but she shook her head vigorously and nearly broke down into a torrent of tears.

She wasn’t talking anymore, she couldn’t at this point. Now I had to do something. I was both worried and annoyed; annoyed that someone could have abandoned a child and because I didn’t in my wildest dreams think this would be happening to me, not on a beautiful morning like this. But Felici drifted across my eyes and I knew there was no turning back.

I told her I’d be back and left to sign the arrival slip. I stopped by to inform the security department and they said they’d look into it. In about a minute, Felici was taken down to the security unit where she was fed and interrogated. They wondered how she had gotten past security in the first place. I stopped by periodically all through the day to check up on her. The day went as fast as you can imagine, as swiftly as a bird flies. I was eager to know the leads on the situation and bumped into everyone on my way out. Their findings: Felici didn’t belong to anyone. Not anyone in the store, not anyone in the country, not anyone alive.

The traumatized nine year old had been on the run for days. She was able to relatively describe her ordeal and the pieces of information she let out shattered me. Every word of it. They were running away from someone, some people. They caught up with them, hijacked their car and killed her parents. They didn’t kill her. She managed to escape and had been running…

The police got wind of the event and promised to investigate. For the time being, I volunteered to take Felici home. The state wanted her in their custody but I promised I’d bring her to the station everyday. What made me do that, I can’t say, but I knew, I knew I just had to.

My wife Laura cleaned Felici up and gave her new clothes from my daughter’s. She found a piece of paper in her breast pocket. I looked upon Felici and saw through her beautiful face. I at once had an epiphany. This child is a story. Her eyes speak of a love that defied meaning, a forbidden love. Her hands were a collection of two souls. Fleeting and powerful. It seemed her parents knew what was to come and so they made her… as a testimony of their joint existence, a testimony of every little moment they’d shared. What could not have been was made substantial and their lives and love continued through her. The fibers of her skin were delicate and true and she smelt of old Spanish wine. I knew without doubt that I’d been made a custodian of this story.

I put pen to paper as if compelled by a force beyond me, but not before reading the words on the paper, each line written in two different fonts, one careful and beautiful, the other mystical and urgent.

Felici you’re a bird

A beautiful beautiful bird

You’re happiness

You’re love

There’s no limit to you

You are our story

Our love.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s