Tea in the desert

He sighed as he sipped his tea. He looked at her as she brought the cup up to her lips and admired the little droplets it left there. She always spills a little when she drinks, he thought as her cup came down on the tray with a clutter.

He looked out at the rain falling in the creaking dry desert they sat in. Each drop of rain thundered down, crashing on the ground, hoping to give live to something but only dying in the end. Thunder came crashing down, splitting his thoughts into a million fragments that floated around them in the darkness of the sunrise.

He pulled one of them close to his eyes and looked into its clinking glass. He saw a floating colorful balloon with a monkey and a camel singing lullabies in the basket. They played with the drops of rain, balancing them on their noses and throwing them to each other. He pulled another piece and saw the monkey and camel sitting by the sea, listening to the lazy waves tumble into each other while a strange bird sang melodies to the sound of the rain.

The shards of glass fell to the ground with a bang, breaking into even smaller pieces that he could not make out anymore. He let out a helpless cry, there were so many more thoughts he would have liked to see. But even the rain failed to bring them life when they fell muted to the glass.

He looked across at her again and admired her distant look. Far out in the desert the clown became a fat cow, but was still dancing, and he was still not funny. How can he be funny when there is no living audience to laugh loudly to him wildly flailing his arms around?

Suddenly a huge worm broke through the ground with a deafening growl and swallowed the clown and the circus tents whole. He jerked out of his rocking chair, spilling the hot tea on his bare feet. He screamed in pain and threw the cup in anger. It landed lazily in the ground, with the rain falling around it until it just became part of the desert.

He looked at her but she did not move. She sat silently sipping her tea. He wondered how she could just sit there through the whole thing. She did not even blink. She turned slowly to look at him as she read his thoughts.

“Nothing here is alive, my love. Nothing is alive. That’s all there is to it.”

And she became part of the desert.


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