I poured myself a cup of coffee. I fed the dog. The dog was not hungry, it crawled under my arm as I stayed there, on the chair by the window. It must’ve felt my restlessness. The sky was gray, again. It had been gray for a while now, day and night, heavy with clouds. I needed it to be clear.
She had left one night to travel to the nearest star. Smiling only with her eyes – the smile of the brave, a smile without mirth – she had said: “I will return. Cling to my words, hold them tightly in a corner of your mind – I will return. I’m afraid I will be forgotten there, you know… But it’s not far. It’s so close, actually. So close that even without a space telescope I will be able to see the planet, if the sky is clear. So close that you can just look up and see my star. And that dot on it, that small dot that you have to squint your eyes to see, that will be my station. It will be my home until I traverse the full rotation. Promise me, promise me that you will look up while I’m looking down!”
But the sky was not clear and I couldn’t see her. So I stayed there, with my cup of coffee, counting seconds and trying find out how much time had passed up there, wondering if she even knew I that couldn’t see her star.
“I’m afraid I will be forgotten, yet I’m more afraid that I will forget. But you understand, right? I have to leave and find life for us all, this space right here doesn’t belong to us anymore” she had whispered with her foot on the stair of the ship.
As I looked through the stained glass, tilting my head to the right ever so slightly, the wisteria tree looked like falling stars. Small, purple planets consumed on their way down.