the strain of waking

The dawn colors muted the dark earth beside him, but let the area surrounding him strictly alone. Opening his arms, he could almost feel the worn, now translucent black material of what had once been a cassock stretch to meet the opening dawn.

His arms lifted slowly as if to travel through the ancient motions. He watched them. Yet he could not watch them. His eyes were shut tight, battened down with heavy coins. He took a long time to wonder about this. As he wondered, he felt his shoulders rise from the ground. Quietly, slowly, he also rose. But the answers did not come to him.

It mattered little. He did not spare the energy required to shrug.