Saturday, 1 October 2011

Forever United

"Last night I dreamt I was back in the cemetery again… there he was, his back turned to me, he looked like a marble sculpture, bathed in the silver moonlight… oh how I longed to see him, if this is dream, I want to keep having this dream forever.”

Joseph Gomez hated this abysmally low paid job. Being a night guard in a cemetery is not anyone’s dream job, but in today’s world, what other option does an illiterate orphan have. He wasn’t superstitious, the cemetery didn’t scare him, though nobody from his village wanted the job. He took it in a purely professional manner, yet sometimes he felt he was being watched, followed, though of course, he knew it couldn’t be true. He guarded dead people, probably the safest people to guard.

“I want to have the dream again, and again… and again… I want to see his face, I want to touch him, I need to know he’s real.”

Gomez trudged through the rows of graves, it had rained in the morning, the ground was slippery, and it would be a rough night tonight. There were no moon, no stars, just a dark and brooding night. He lifted up his gas light higher, and fastened his pace. He again felt, somebody, somewhere was watching him. He didn’t like tonight, it was eerily quiet, he wanted the rains, the howling winds, the striking lightening, at least he would know, there is life… this utter stillness, was like enveloping death. If only he could finish his inspection and just return to his one roomed post...

He heard a distant rumble of thunder, he felt relieved, there was a gust of wind, chilling him to bones, and his light flickered. He hurried, he had to get to his post, something about tonight was not right… he started to sprint.

“He is so near, if I could just look at him, one look, that is all I need. He’s near the bend, I must reach out, what if he falls and hurts himself, take my hand, please, please do take my hand…."

Gomez was running now, the darkness overpowered the feeble light of his gas lamp, making it difficult to see where he was heading; he started losing his grip on the light. His foot slipped the light flying out of his hand, he hit something hard, the last thing he saw before his eye lids closed, was the lone flame of his light, flickering, as if gasping for the last breadth.

“This is where you rest, near me, I’ll keep you with me forever, keep you safe… oh how beautiful you are, I never, never want to wake up and see you gone, I want this dream to last forever…."

A new marble tombstone read:

Here lies Joseph Mellissa Gomez, caretaker and protector of the St. Augustine graveyard. The only child of Andrews and Maria Gomez, born on 29 June 1972. He faithfully served the Church and expired on duty due to a fatal fall. May his soul rest in peace.

Beside that, an old broken tombstone lay with the words:

Here lies Maria Mellissa Gomez, who died in bringing little, Joseph in the world on June 29, 1972. May the Lord grant her a place amongst his beloved.

“Now at last, I have you by my side, I’ll keep you safe, here, with me, forever…”

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