Back to the Beginning



I have ridden out here alone

I it is a bit more overgrown than it was but I know this is the place.

I remember it as if it were yesterday.

Here is the patch of ground where I buried my past

This is the place I had come to – my end of the road.

I knew myself, knew I could not change.

Here is where I would end it all.

He thought he was saving me, telling me that he could see the good in me.

After he’d pointed it out, all I could feel was anguish and a deep sadness.

No one would forgive me. I couldn’t forgive myself.

How could I atone? How?

Then I’d heard a noise, hidden behind a tree,

and something happened that changed my life.

A gang of bloodthirsty scum had rounded up the women of a nearby town.

I hesitated, didn’t want to get involved, until I saw her.

She was a pint sized spitfire, offering herself to spare another.

I acted before I thought. It was one of the stupidest moves I had ever made.

I had no weapons; I only wore a shift --

but there was something about that girl.

With her aid, I saved them all.

She wanted to come with me.

That made me laugh. I turned her down.

I didn’t know she’d followed me.

I had been right all along, I couldn’t overcome my past.

My family and the people of my town turned me away

with hatred and with stones. I let the stones hit me.

I didn’t care if I lived or died that day.

Amazingly, she did. The girl. The spitfire.

She had followed me and she saved me.

I shake my head. I wonder how long I’ve been sitting here.

Argo shifts under me and I come back to the present.

"Okay, Girl," I reach down to pat her neck

and turn her towards Potadeia.

There, leaning against a tree,

her staff held in the crook of her elbow, is Gabrielle, the little spitfire herself,

grown now into a strong and beautiful woman.

I nudge Argo, who trots over to her.

She smiles up at me, scratches Argo’s ear and holds up her arm.

I lean, pull her up and settle her in front of me, holding her tight.

She grabs my hand, kisses it, won’t let go.

Good. Neither do I. I will hold her and love her forever.

She is my redeemer, my salvation, my partner.

She is my life.



© Ellie Maziekien


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