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For my future that is to be, to be, that not has yet come, to reach, to reach what lies beyond what these eyes see. To know. To wish. A fallen star is nothing more than a sparkle, a flash, a wink. Only to illuminate and dazzle night’s sky for one brief moment, then fall, sparkle gone, extinguished by night’s cold hand. Only a memory remains. Nothing more. No one will remember when it shined so brightly…then is gone. Will you remember Matthew? Gone. Gone. A life gone in one tiny instant. Life passes you by, you fallen star. Hey, Matthew- after that, how many people’s secrets and stars did you watch fall, gently, right through the palms of your hands…and how many of them did you crush?
I hope my future makes me needed. Hope I make ripples and ripples in the pond. Make a difference and change something, find something once lost. Discover how to make it known again. To be noticed. Changed the pond didn’t I? For a little while anyway...I made a splash and made a difference.
To be remembered. What will be left when I am gone? Gone. Gone. A memory? A picture? A hazy face in someone’s mind. Only to be blown away by an icy wind from a far off star. Once you knew me fallen star. Fallen star, fallen star. I’ve found out what you really are. A face behind a long worn mask, the contents of an empty shell, the tiny treasure hidden inside a long lost box. Inside. Inside. Look deep and make a splash. Come on Matthew, don’t leave the rest of us fallen stars alone in the box…
I hope to write big. Write so big that there is no choice but for me to be remembered. Make the fallen stars of this world inspired. Imbue them with the spirit to do something BIG. Why go through life unnoticed? Who knows, fallen star, maybe you will shine again someday.
You’re it! You’re it! Mathew yells. Across his lawn I stand, ready to pounce like a lion before its final kill. I’m it, I’m it. I spot Tori and Abby behind me. One has tagged me. I’m it, I’m it. Time to go. I run towards Mathew since he is slowest. Across the lawn I sprint in the summer sun, the grass never greener, our smiles never bigger, the sun never brighter. To be 8. Mathew gets away in time, but I chase him again and again. Finally, just as I’m about to tag him. He’s down. Just like that. Flat on his back. Didn’t slip. Didn’t trip. Just shut off like a computer. Snap. Crackle. Pop. Usually a computer comes back to life once you turn it on. You wouldn’t call that ordinary. Hey, Matthew- come back soon. Or else I’ll come to you.
Wake up, wake up I say. He doesn’t move. I shake him. Nothing. Unresponsive. To be terrified at 8. I tremble. I shake. Wake up, wake up you fallen star. Tori and Abby are standing behind me on either side. 6 and 7. 6, 7, 8.
Narcolepsy. I don’t think that’s it though. I don’t remember what they told me. Mathew’s brain just shuts off when he is up and about. He is homeschooled. Never played with them again. Right across the street they live. I see Abby dance around in her room through her open balcony door. Tori on her front porch talking to her brother Mathew. I watch them with eyes unseen. A memory is all they ever were to me. I still watch them through my open door, on their lawn.
There’s an edge between the sidewalk and the shoulder of the road. It’s a three-inch strip of concrete cut off for no reason anyone ever bothers to think about. That’s where he walks. Always, all the time, Every day walking. You wouldn’t call that kind of walking ordinary. You wouldn’t think that walking toe to heel, toe to heel- was perfectly average. If he felt like it, he would sometimes turn and wade up the flow of people even if it meant taking the long way to his destination. You wouldn’t call that ordinary. Right? Right? Right? Terrifyingly extraordinary. Aren’t you afraid of not being remembered…snap. Click. Zap. You’re gone. He would be remembered. Even if it was as the only person who walked the opposite way everyone else walked. Something different. I Want to remembered I tell her. I want to be heard and am afraid of it not being so. Worried for the other stars. I am afraid of not helping the others out of the box. Of not being able to come back when I’m out. …Matt…Are you proud of me? Even if it’s a lie- please tell me that you are…
To inspire the fallen stars. They can each be something. They can each shine. Be BIG I said to Tori one afternoon at 9. 7, 8, 9. Different now but still the same. What, she asked me. Remembered, I said, Don’t fade.
Make others remembered. Not an image, not a name. A face. A story to be told again and again. I hope to write it in big blue letters across the sky. Be BIG, never small, learn to live and live it all, never let anything pass you by, laugh your way up to the sky, you fallen star, so high so high, like a moment that never dies.
The future that waits for me is one in a small yellow house, so small, so small, but inside it is hidden something BIG. With another fallen star I shall live, make them shine again, so brilliant so bright. Ripples, ripples I will make. Ripples, ripples in the pond. Laughter, laughter in my wake. Together we will make a splash you fallen star. Mangos, mangos you silly star. Fallen star, Fallen star, I know, I know who you really are. Did your parents know this Matthew? Did they treasure you; tell you that you were special? Did they build you a box of their love? With a ceiling of fear and interlocking hands that made sure you didn’t fall? Boxes care for our precious things. And boxes break. Matthew, is it terrifying being a fallen star?