One morning, Sharma woke, and realized he could fly. One tiny leap, and his head banged on the ceiling, and down he flew. He raced outside to practice, and this time, he made it to the top of a tree. He caught just a glimpse of a bird’s nest full of eggs, before landing lightly. His next leap, he managed to float long enough to grab a handful of eggs, which he took home to his mother for her breakfast.
Day after day, he flew higher, and stayed up longer, touching first the rooftops, then the tops of mountains, then the clouds themselves. And with each flight, he found some new present for his mother–a gem from the mountaintops, spun sugar from the clouds. And Sharma’s mother became very wealthy, and she began telling him what new presents she wished from him, and her house filled up so she had to move outside and live in a tent, but still she asked him–this time “a mountain goat’s hoof,” that time “a shred of lightning.”
And Sharma grew weary of flying, weary of collecting. Then came the final demand. She asked him to get her the breath of God. He flew,and searched, and flew, and searched, until he touched the moon and brushed the sun, and still he searched, but to no avail. And his mother became very angry.
So Sharma flew one more time, this time higher than ever before. And there he lay, floating on the breeze. And he felt it, a warm breath that touched his head and warmed his legs and filled his heart. And he looked down at his mother, living in her tent. And he thought “I will float her forever. I will gather no more. I will live in this warm breath, and I will never return.”
And he never did.
~Eric Samuelson, Provo, Utah