Winds from far-off lands
assaulted the bluff
which rose from the sea.
A girl balanced on the precipice and
opened her arms to the gale.
The torrent fulfilled her need for self-flagellation as
it beat upon her torso
and molded her dress
to her body.
Blasts separated the strands of her hair and
forced them into
her eyes and
her mouth and
circled her ears and
her nose and
Her ankles were sliced
by the saw grass that
grew wild on the bluff.
She pressed her arms to her chest.
She had been here before
in search of guidance from her gods.
In concert with the will of the wind
she flung back her head and
raised her hands to the heavens.
Her unspoken plea was answered.
A squall reversed the direction of the storm and
exploded behind her
sending its vengeance to the sea.
Her equilibrium was lost to the sudden change.
She took a step forward.
The earth fell away as
she soared off the bluff and
rode the wind into space.
The gods had spoken.
She would not be forgiven.
She would pay for her sin with death.
A feeling of peace settled over her.
As if in repudiation of her acceptance of her fate
the winds shifted again.
They blew her body back to land.
The momentary relief she had experienced
and she was left to pay for her transgressions
with the curse of life
rather than the gift of death.