The mind is a live thing, twisting and turning, slipping and sliding, laughing and frowning; incessantly gnawing at some or the other thought as an eternally hungry dog at an elusive bone; never completely happy, never completely immersed in sadness. Worry reigns supreme, the commander of a million unrelated thoughts, the common thread binding love, grief, pride, ambition. I sit uneasy on the scattered remains of countless memories and regret silently explodes, rich, warm and fresh with time, aways a reminder of that something I did or did not do, or did not see coming, or said or did not say, and my mind is weighed down with an odd little pain, all the more powerful for the fact that I cannot spot where it lies. Regret is all colours of the rainbow, the deep red of grief, the subtle salty blue of nostalgia, the deep verdant green of reflection, the sunlit yellow of what might have once been, but never was. How it teases and tickles, that pregnant possibility, heavy with meaning, that never ripened!
I rise and walk on water, each footstep washed away by orange waves whose fragrance rises to disturb me with it over-sweetness, and thousands of faces merge into a collage in front of my eyes until I can no more see. A ship sails to my right, bobbing gently. A child of six stands on the deck with hair in several shades of grey. Her green eyes look straight into mine, through mine, into a future I cannot see. She smiles, then frowns, then exclaims, then weeps and finally her face clears into a calm acceptance born of the wisdom of life and experience, like life washed over her in the space of a heartbeat. I reach out and my hand strikes a mirror, the strike resonating for a few moments in the air. My reflection laughs back at me, unmocking, joyous. Then my entire body swirls into pure white smoke and the only thing left, rich, warm and fresh with time, is regret.