Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Entry #124

The Baptizer
by K. Lawson Gilbert


The old woman blessed herself when she saw the young man’s Sacred Heart of Jesus tattoo. Blood flowed from the nearly life-sized heart and ran in inky rivulets from his muscular bicep to his elbow.

Who would have a tattoo like that? She mused, as she searched her coat pockets for a tissue, shifting from one foot to the other on the grooved step of the escalator. Isn’t that sacrilegious or something? She blew her bulbous nose.

Her eyes found the tattoo again. “A flaming heart - shining with divine light, a bleeding lance-wound, surrounded by a crown of thorns, surmounted by a cross,” she whispered aloud, quietly and slowly, as she studied the image closely.

“OH! OH! Ohhhh! She cried, stumbling headfirst into the young man, as he stepped off the escalator. The old woman had been close on his heels, inspecting the image.

“Are you okay?” He asked, genuinely concerned.

“I might have been killed!” She blurted out, adjusting her babushka.

As he helped her up from the floor, her left hand touched the Sacred Heart of Jesus tattoo.

“Let’s sit here,” he said, as he led her to a nearby bench and sat down with her.

The woman looked in the palm of her left hand. It was wet with dark, red blood. She looked quizzically into the face of the young man.

“You have been baptized in the blood of Jesus, Anaya. “Go to the Father now,” he smiled and whispered, as she closed her eyes.

28 comments:

JR's Thumbprints said...

You did a wonderful job showing us what happened in the story: the old woman's observations, her fall, and the tatooed man's reaction to it.

McKoala said...

I loved the use of detail.

September said...

Very interesting. Good job.
You portrayed the woman's change of heart well.

Lena said...

Wonderfully expressed. Kept me glued to it till the very end.

*~*{Sameera}*~* said...

That was beautiful!Liked the spiritual twist :)

Tina said...

Had me hooked from the beginning. :D

Scott said...

Oh, very good, K! What an ominous twist you put in there.

laughingwolf said...

happens when you believe....

Margaret said...

Very well written. I can just imagine Anaya's expression when she saw the blood on her hand.

wrath999 said...

Beautifully written

BernardL said...

I enjoyed this very much.

Aine said...

Nice modern twist on the grim reaper! I had to reread it just to imagine how an observer would see her (especially if the young man is not visible to anyone else). Excellent writing!

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

I appreciate all your comments so very much. Thanks to each and everyone of you! ;)

Karen said...

K -- You're such a versatile writer, but I guess the bottom line is that you can WRITE - whether it is poetry or prose.

I love the description of the tatoo and how appalled Anaya is by its existence. Very nice twist at the end. I didn't see that coming at all.

Great writing from a great talent.

Catvibe said...

K, your mind is wild! I love where you took me here, truly imaginative.

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Karen - thanks so much. I was surprised to find out that you were "my" Karen. *LOL* Glad you joined in the fun. Loved your very intense story!

Cat - I know I have a wild mind...but that is why you love me! Right? LOL Thanks!

Catvibe said...

Yes indeedy! That is why I love you! :-)

pjd said...

As a non-religious person who is intrigued by faith and the differences among various Religions (big "R"), I actually find this story both fascinating and a bit troubling. But I'm not sure exactly why.

Aniket Thakkar said...

It was very imaginative... and I loved it despite being an atheist!

Aniket Thakkar said...

I have written a spoof story of sorts on Ascension.... do read it when you get time! http://foolishnessofthings.blogspot.com/2009/01/fyeo-ascension-revisited.html

You are a character in it as well! :-D

Scott Ennis said...

Nice. More than just a description of a trip, you got a whole story in this through your judicious use of detail.

bluesugarpoet said...

I, too, enjoyed the modernized grim reaper. Great writing!

Jana

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

pjd, Thanks for your comment - I think..lol


Aniket, haha - thanks! and great spoof...I really enjoyed it.


Scott - many thanks for your kind words and support of my work.


Bluesugarpoet - I appreciate your stopping by and commenting! :)

Vesper said...

Anaya - "God answered" (I searched the meaning of this word on the Internet)...
What a strange, scary, interesting, well written story, K.! I really liked it!
xo

SzélsőFa said...

This one lingered with me for quite a while. I like how mysticism is mixed with harsh reality. 'cause this is how it really is, I tend to assume these days. Great and interesting story.

Sarah Hina said...

I loved the thread here, from the tattoo being something that shocked her sense of convention to an immortal lifeline. I felt like we crossed over with her in our understanding.

Wonderful imagery, as always, K. Those rivulets of blood seeping onto her hand will stay with me. Very inspired take, my dear friend! :)

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Vesper - I wondered if anyone would find out what Anaya meant! LOL! (I should have known it would be you - that just makes me happy!!) Thank you so much for your very complimentary remarks. You are wonderful, dear Vesper!


SzelsoFa - Many thanks for stopping by and reading my entry. I appreciate your comments very much. Yes, Mysticism and Reality are just a breath apart.


Sarah - Yes, it was her immortal lifeline. In my story - The Baptizer is from God. He is everywhere at once, in search of people who are about to die and have not been baptized. He gives them this sacrament as a gift from God.

Thanks so much for all your hard work on this. I wrote to Jason that I wore out a pair of contacts reading the stories. lol....it was worth it.

Thanks for your beautiful comments to me - ;D

jason evans said...

Great job with entertainment value, technical skill, storytelling, and voice! And welcome to the Forties Club!!

Thanks for being a wonderful part of the contest.