Once Upon a Month: Seasons

(For a better experience, read while listening to Leo Rojas’s “Chaski”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AaWGhXAzGB0)

[Spring, shoot]

Glasses clinked, lips broke into smiles, the air was awash with merriment. The cries of the new baby only added to the cheer. He, the baby, was going to be the pride of his folks. He’d do great things, become one of the greats of his time. So, there was a reason to be happy.

The child was brought into the midst of the small gathering. The elders said prayers, blessings were uttered for the young shoot who looked on though he saw nothing. Peace was written all over its small face.

Once Upon a Month: Six-One

(For a better experience, read while listening to James Paget’s “The Hero Within”. Available at: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0gC0WlU0NtM)

[Command Center]

The small group was mostly seated, save a few pacing about as they tried quietly to contain their anxiety and excitement. Several pairs of eyes watched the large flat screen TV; the performance was about to begin.

[Region 1, Blue Violet]

Brigette leafed through the files Agah her deputy had left on the oak table from yesterday. Her quick scan done, she pushed the pile away as there was nothing of interest or urgently needing her attention. She was thinking of heading out to grab a cup of coffee when the door opens and Agah walks in. He has an envelope in his hand with the emblem of Regional Head Quarters.

Once Upon a Month: Raised Curtains

(For a better experience, read while listening to Enya’s “May It Be”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8u4VLk0iTI)

James: How pretty she is! She’s always in my view at the office, and I admire her every day.

Rose: She’s green.

James: Rose, I think you envy her.

Chang: I wonder what you think of this passing year.

James: Who? You mean for Tina?

Chang: Yeah.

Zahra: Interesting. James, I thought she was Libertina?

James: Still is. Tina’s a short form of Libertina.

Once Upon a Month: Coming Home

(For a better experience, read while listening to Ludovico Einaudi’s “Nuvole Bianche”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcihcYEOeic)

[Knock, knock. A man. Neatly dressed. Like an officer. He’s an officer]

Mother: Evan? Mary. Come in, come in. Please sit. Evan, I thought you were at, what’s the name of the place, with your friend. He said last week…

[Joe’s room; on the phone]

Joe: Hey, are you still there? It’s my dad’s friend who was at the door with his wife. Leila got to the door before me. She’s let them in.

Once Upon a Month: Peace

(For a better experience, read while listening to Marshmello ft. Khalid’s “Silence”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tk36ovCMsU8)

[In the beginning]

My folks liked him. A lot. He was a golden boy. The ladies including my friends wanted him. Money was involved too. A rich kid, he was. I was lucky, everybody told me so. That my parents approved of him meant so much to me. For them, I was the wrong child ever since I stopped worshipping with them. Though he wasn’t a worshipper like me, they’d somehow come to like him and welcomed his interest in me. I convinced myself that I’d come to love him, and we got married.

Once Upon a Month: Magnificent

(For a better experience, read while listening to Bon Iver’s “Skinny Love”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssdgFoHLwnk)

I asked my boss what he thought of him. “He’s got what he’s got but here’s not for him”. How do you mean? “We can’t hire him ‘cos he’s different. He is not like us”. They told him that we had no vacancy at the company. He smiled, bowed and left. Next day we hired someone “like us”. I saw him in the streets sometimes, and he would avoid my eyes and keep his head bowed. He became that way with other people.

Once Upon a Month: Rainbow Leaves

(For a better experience, read while listening to Tori Kelly’s “Colors of the Wind”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XpIMGamlvwg)

Line 1: Hello…Can you hear me?

Line 2: Hey! Yeah, I hear you. What’s up?

Line 1: Err, can you, err, come to my office? Like, right now? It’s important.

Line 2: Is something wrong? Okay, I’m on my way.

[Traffic lights. Speeding cars. Sirens. Breaking news on TV screens. Shots. Shards of glass. Bodies]

“So many people were rushed into the Emergency Room. She was among them. You saw the news? There was a shooter at her school.”

Once Upon A Month: Emergence

(For a better experience, read while listening to Jackie Evancho’s “With or Without You”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FceCTGI32Hg)

Through many lonely nights you labored on as you reached for a dream. You shared your vision of a beautiful world across space and time. Your visions were clear but I doubted that you could reach those shores. You loved me; we were to be in your world together and so you would wait and you did. You sold those ideas to me and waited for me to believe in you. How good you were at selling! You gave me your hand which though calloused from working with rough hand tools, was still pretty. I took your hand and got on a boat with you as we set to sea.