The Sugar of the Earth – part 4


The ocean split in white plumes beneath her hull.


The ship was a slight craft of some twenty feet. It had once been a pleasure vessel of an otherwise unnotable roue. That lecher, his veins flooded with rum, had drowned not ten feet from the boat after the misfortune of toppling overboard into a school of gigantic stinging jellyfish. The fathoms drank his corpse, a mere shade against the light of the jellyfish, themselves the vigorous orange of exploding zeppelins.


Still, Zgija would find knocking about the boat the absurd paraphernalia of it’s previous owner.


The island loomed. All about it, wreathed in wide circumference, were the delicate motu: satellite slivers of land – sands like salt, frothed with feathery palms, shivering against the wide waves of the ocean, sieving those heaving waters into liquor-clear lagoons of eerie stillness.


It had taken Zgija some time to find a passage through the motu, the shallows offering a labyrinth of deceptive depths and sandbars. Skittish fish darted before the bow. It was full dusk when she at last steered the craft safely into the crescent bay cradling that small town. Little glass globes of lanterns bobbed in the streets. Some few folks moved about. Behind the town, arching to it’s volcanic origins, the island piled up into the night.


It wasn’t that there was nowhere left to go, only that each attempted solace came with it’s own set of concessions. On the island the shame of metabolism might be tempered with vital fevers, skin plucked at to test it’s boundaries could yet become flushed with ebullient infections. Sleep came easy. Wakefulness grew on trees. The island, if one could find the way, was an eye in the storm that crawled across the ancient planet.


By some magnetic conspiracy of deep science, the one lasting horoscope in the ruination of all others, could only be seen from that one island. Zgija plied the sky with her glass. But, no. Or, at least, not yet. The evening was green yet. There was ripeness to come in the fleshy hours of deep night.


Her eyes were opulently large. The sockets in her skull must have been tremendous to hold such orbs. Her lids closed over so great a quantity of those eyes that she had about her the perpetual look of the wry or the freshly woken; one might wonder if she were to unroll all the lid from each eye how many other pupils, freshly dilating in the light, looking on to what other vistas, might be revealed.


Across the bay the kinship flash of another spyglass winked. On a cliff above the little town, Zgija could just define a figure there peering as she did at the island, at the waters, at the sky. He was a ragged thing with long hair. When she was at the cusp of defining him more a new quality of illumination ignited among the stars.


That sought after structure, that one whole zodiac, The Starhenge swung into view.









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