“The storm is coming!” So the tidal waves utter, crashing into cliffs and spattering their violent embraces across the roaring shore. There is only one dark silhouette standing quiescently amidst the oncoming water. A young lady with dark, shadowy eyes fixed on the edge of the Earth is singing, as her raven hair wavers in the forceful gusts of poignant oceanic air…
"The wind will carry us, And everything shall disappear: The caresses and wars, The wounds which pull us near…"
“Eva!” – a distant cry, subdued by the northern gale, reaches her, yet the young lady remains still, frozen, unwavering, letting the grains of salt pierce her bare skin. Counting the sailing ships, as they fade into a dusky horizon, Eva feels the grains of golden sand slipping through her fingers. The tighter she clasps them, the faster they creep away, like aureate snakes, leaving behind their obscure venom – the pain of regret.
"In the palace of time, Tomorrow and yesterday, Our dead years still shine, Their scent is swept away…"
The thunder blends with a feeble voice, calling her name longingly, devoutly, as the refulgent silver arrow breaks the sky in two. And so it goes: the sun is sinking – a lonely heart is lost at sea. Eva is trying to suppress a tremor, rushing from her fingertips to the spine: the last grain of sand has fallen, instantaneously giving in to the torrent’s insatiable kiss. She is out of time.
“The infinity of destinies
Knocks softly on your door –
My shadow from the rising seas
Will take your dust ashore…”
Desolately, Eva follows the relentless call. Deeper and deeper she is submerging, steadfast and upright, despite stepping on shrouded rocks, as the slender threads of seaweed enlace her body. The tumultuous water strokes her lips, leaving its pungent taste on the tongue. Irrevocably, Eva breathes out, and the waves close over her in a thunderous roll.
Startled by an ominous flash, she beholds the subaqueous realm, lit up by a dim electric blaze. The swirls of dust ascend from the ocean floor, clouding Eva’s eyesight, pouring their torturous acid into her burning lungs. Another flare penetrates the water’s surface, transfixing the drowning body, and the young woman feels a sharp twinge in her heart. A second of luminescent radiance is enough to see the tumultuous vortex of shipwreck debris swirling hither and thither, destroying everything in its wake. Yet, she faces the peril – unvanquished, unafraid.
At lightning speed, akin to a wild siren, someone’s diaphanous, weightless hands lock around Eva’s waist, pulling her into the fathomless void. For an ephemeral moment, two silhouettes embrace, sinking into unfathomable depths; only the tempest’s rhythm and the ebbing heartbeat are left in the widening darkness.
Slowly emerging from the deafening slumber, her soul encounters – not Death – but the all-knowing Fate. Myriad fleeting memories encompass Eva’s consciousness. All her life is laid out neatly before the mind’s omnipresent eye, every detail accentuated, inviting her to choose any day, any instant – to revive, to rescue it from Lethe’s remorseless stream. She could easily forget, annihilate all the joy and anguish, yet the memories persist, hovering on the edges of her being, filling in every fold, every crevice. Alas, only one moment can be rescued from this treasury – a singular gem to shelter from the oncoming tide in the deepest chambers of remembrance. The lady takes a deep breath.
Eva is standing on the shore – the bride of the waves, the forlorn mistress of the looming storm. A captive aboard the missing ship engulfed by the monstrous billows, her lover has now found empyrean comfort on the seabed’s soft pillow. Observing the vessels, swaying precariously in the distance, before they vanish once and forever, she keeps counting. “One” – the thunder rolls across the bay. “Two” – the lightning lingers on the water’s rippled mirror. “Three” – the last grain of sand falls from her trembling hands. Again, she feels a burning sting of regret – “I could not save you from the fatal eclipse. I could not answer your cries. This recollection is the only thing left.”
“Eva!” – the voice calls again – ethereally distant, yet heart-wrenchingly familiar. Oh – if only for an instant – to prolong the moment, to stretch the memory, savouring the doleful music of a lover’s call! Although she has relived this minute multitudinous times, still the desperate yearning submerges her under its smothering billow. Willingly, Eva returns to the sea, trading eternity for a moment in her beloved’s arms. When they touch – briefly, tenderly – she whispers:
“Forsaking the infinity of destinies, I choose the memory of you.”