The New Jerusalem

They are fond of sunny days and open spaces which she has come to fear. There has always been these empty streets, these deserted alleyways, these shops boarded up and dark. Windows papered over with torn newsprint; she has tried every door and found it locked, no sanctuary there.

Noon is a dangerous time; no shadows then. Their voices echo off the elaborate concrete of the untenanted high-rises. She hurries from street to street, head down and ragged collar up, eyes glued to the tips of her shoes. She has seen them now and then, flashes in the corner of her eyes, and bled for it, been burned for it. They are not made to be seen in their power and their glory, the splendor of the noonday sun.

She has been here a nameless length of time. She cannot remember anything before, but there is an ache for human voices that tells her of other times, other places, less god-touched, more human.

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