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Violet Skies and White Fields

Gravestone of a childhood friendship

By M.Published 3 months ago 4 min read
Violet Skies and White Fields
Photo by Florencia Viadana on Unsplash

Violet skies and white fields.

We cross a parking lot covered by a thick blanket of snow. Everything seems otherworldly – the concrete jungle of the city’s outskirts hidden beneath a white coating. Concrete jungle is a term I use with a poetic license, here. This is not NY. Not even remotely that important. It is a town, too mediocre to be called shitty.

The point is that for us, right now, this might as well be the whole known world. The only thing we have seen of the outside was filtered through the pixels of unwieldy old television boxes no longer in production.

Back to the snowy parking lot. This could be a desert. This could be the moon. The place we knew vanished under beveled edges, streets and walkways like frozen white rivers, trees bowing in the shapes of old, white bearded giants. I always loved the snow. When everything seems so different, it’s easier to pretend you are somewhere else.

Violet skies, white fields.

The sky is filled with heavy, pregnant clouds, their gloomy-tinged underbelly demonstrating the dictionary definition of stillness right on top of our heads. Of course, this is the adult me recalling the event, not the kid me experiencing. Anyway, even back then I could associate that grave violet with the kind of sky you can only see in a snowstorm.

Our snow boots sink in the palms deep ice crust, that crackles as if it’s made of chips. Every sound is muffled and far, exception made for heavy breaths under my scarf. It’s December, I think. Early 2000s, one of those years at the start of the new millennium.

A traffic sign pokes out from the snow, lone sentry on an empty road. We target it with snowballs, making it sound like a gong. My aim is bad, I rarely hit it.

Violet skies, white fields.

In a couple of years, I’m gonna be angry at you. I’m gonna feel abandoned. When my so called friends will turn against me, hissing like vipers, you, who were the first, will do nothing to help. You’ll stand in the sidelines, slowly watching as I become a recluse.

But that has still to come. In that afternoon we just walk in the snowy field, chitchatting about school and family, friends and foes, hopes and projects. The future is a castle that might as well be built on clouds, for what we know. We struggle to learn, to grow fast, to understand. We try to reach ideas that we don’t fully grasp.

Many years later, you’ll tell me you needed to get out my shadow. To build your own personality, to stop feeling like my henchman. I will act surprised, as it never occurred to me that I could cast such a long shadow. I was a small plump kid, and I assumed everything about me had to be small and plump as well. Looking back, maybe you had your reasons – my goodwill was always coated with egoism.

The kid back then grew into in a man. Somehow I expected you to follow me, to be something less than me. When you think about your best friend, you can’t pull your ego completely out of the picture. You were, indeed, my best friend. But you existed for yourself, in a world I couldn’t see, a world that didn’t include me. I didn’t realize then. I seldom realize now.

Sadly enough, life goes on when you aren’t looking.

That December afternoon is long gone, like our puffs of breath in the icy air. Two clumsy boys in an almost faded picture. My naivety dried up in my bones, and something worse than being young and hopeful dug deep marks under my eyes. My disproportionate shadow caught up with me over and over again until we got to the current truce. In a way, we were better then; better since we didn’t know better.

I feel like I’m running just to leave that boy behind and it is somewhat scary. Absurd, I know. I wonder if you feel the same: are you running too? Did you finally manage to get out my shadow? Are we peers? And if we are, why I still feel left behind?

Soon it won’t matter anymore. Movies never show what happens to snow in a time of climate change, in a climate that’s more wet than cold. Ice melts in a thin sludge, blackened by exhaust pipes. It lasts for weeks, it freezes over in patches, it stares at you with the ugly face of innocence ran over multiple times. Then, finally, it gives up and pours down into the drainpipes.

That’s what’s left of that afternoon. A sludge-memory.

Yet, I won’t regret living it. Sometimes, I still feel the wind howling my name, or gently whispering in my ear the desire to seek far away things. Soon enough our ways will part again. We might be friends, yes, but each one has to seek out his dream. Another man’s dream is just a pair of unfit shoes.

Like shoes, we were, maybe, too tight.

White fields, violet skies.

FriendshipTeenage yearsStream of ConsciousnessChildhood

About the Creator


Half-time writer, all time joker. M. Maponi specializes in speculative fiction, and speculates on the best way to get his shit together.

Author of "Reality and Contagion" and "Consultancy Blues"

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Comments (2)

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  • Andrea Corwin 3 months ago

    This is such a good story. Heartfelt, sad. What a great line, this: Another man’s dream is just a pair of unfit shoes. Then, leaving the boy behind - yeah, it can be scary. Great job!

  • Asad Message3 months ago

    Great insight

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