Red Mother by Geeta Boodansingh

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Red Mother

She was old now, though not yet weary of the life she had led. She still enjoyed her dance around the sun, through the liquid black of space and time, with the stars, millions of them, like tiny eyes watching. She loved watching the others, some older than she was, others younger, dance as well. They would pass each other, running races along their pre destined paths, circling eternity it seemed, yet never tiring, and never imagining that one day it would end.

Her time came unexpected. She knew instantly that something was wrong, things were changing and she could not fathom why. These changes would inevitable result in her death. She did not want to change, did not want to die. But more so, she did not want her children to die. They were young still, new born, in the primordial stage of life. They had yet to evolve and grow into beings that could understand what was happening, could fear what the implications of her death would mean. And if she died now, she knew they would never become such beings. She could not prevent her death, but maybe somehow she could prevent theirs.

She danced slowly now, but there was no joy in it anymore. The tune of life was no longer hers, the dirge of death replacing the emptiness left by its departure. Sorrowfully she watched the other ones dance, envying them. A particular one caught her eye, not too far from her it moved, pulsing with the energy and vivacity of life. She was not so different from that one. True, the children of the other had developed more, and were still evolving, but still they were not so different. An idea dawned then, a ray of hope to cut through the darkness that had descended. What if she were to send her children there? They could live, grow and evolve if the other allowed it, if the other welcomed them. The journey would be dangerous; they might not even survive or reach their destination. But if they went they would have a chance of life, if they stayed there was only the certainty of death. She knew what she had to do. She wondered if they lived, her children, if they would remember her. Or would she fade, unsung, and not grieved for? It did not matter now. She would do what she must.

In the dark of space a fragment of rock traveled: part of her body and part of her soul. Her children unaware, traveled, swiftly away from their red mother into the welcoming arms of a blue green world. The impact they made on arrival resounded for miles around. The children of that world wondered at this thing that fell, flaming from the sky. Timidly they approached the object that pulsed and glowed. The red mother's children would meet the blue mother's own. The meeting, unknown to each other, would change them, merge them, allowing the red mother's children a place to live and allowing the blue mother's children to evolve and advance forward in a way that their descendants would wonder at in millions of years to come.

He stared longingly at the red planet, fingers adjusting the telescope so he could get a better view.

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