And, when the initial dynamite blast of the day had turned a wall of rock to dust, exposed a path hidden (a path, in fact, that had never been there before), Allister's eyes lit with the excitement that comes only in those fleeting moments that begin a journey-when all lays in front and thoughts of danger and victory merge. He could feel his body flinch and had to catch himself before he surged forward, before he plunged excitedly ahead and exposed just how green he was. There were, after all, a few more explosions to be made before one could set foot inside.
The tunneling began. And soon after, the mining began. Each continued until the tunneling was finished. The mining completed. Nothing left.
Allister wiped the dust from his brow, rubbed his eyes, and walked out from the mountain’s stomach and realized it was done. So often this happened. Beginnings that turned to endings. And some would go on to mine more. But, Allister felt a loss.
So, he went home, and with a tiny blade, began to burrow into the palm of his hand.
Which palm, was not important. One hand burrowed. The other let itself be burrowed.
When it began to hurt, Allister pressed on. Pressed in. He had been hurt before and wanted more. So, he went past hurt. He was not afraid. Not of the blood. It was his, after all. His own. Why be afraid of what is yours? Red, salty. It was like a sea, but more like a river. More like a stream. For the tunnel was not big enough for a river. Just a stream. A creek. The Red Sea Creek that trickled from his palm.
Allister paddled through past ideas and aspirations that were past. Past ideas and aspirations that were now (which is now-we should remember-then). Past the past and into the present.
What was the purpose? Someone intelligent had said that it laid ahead. Whom? Allister was unsure. He would say Abraham Lincoln, for Abraham Lincoln was a good response to the question of, “Whom?” But, he did not know. He did not know whom or what or why or where or, more importantly, how and when.
The only question Allister knew the answer to was, “How deep?”
Til he could feel the pulse.