by Madeline Laughs
I refused to turn on the television set. I knew the drill as the newscasters busied themselves smiling for the cameras all pointed in our direction. Selling advertisements and showing lovely fallen homes into the sea. They are all the same to me now. I have heard them all before today, so why should I watch the rerun of past horrors play themselves over and over to distraction?
This little piggy built his home of straw resembling a tiki hut bar scene from a bad B movie and this little piggy built his home of wood and covered it in vinyl siding to protect it from termites. The third little piggy built his house with remote controlled metal hurricane shutters. He buried his pilings deep within the sandy shore and poured gallons of concrete around the steel girders he welded in place one sun shiny day.
The piggies live in their homes with happiness and barbeques. They bask on the beach during the light mornings and shade their pink tinted skin within the air conditioned safety of the booze parlors and restaurants that dot their slice of paradise. Beautifully painted signs and stands of fresh fruit and delicacies line the highway into the land of plenty and most. Advertising the only way they have to continue to make their ends meet in the middle so another season upon the sandbar of exotic and warm is possible.
Piggies came from all over the planet to tour and marvel at the birth of pigs in flight. Whoever thought pigs could fly? But they can and we have proven that to all of you out there that dare doubt we can rise above the impossible and the magnificent. We have shown you our inventive minds and we have shared our sandbar so you can sink your toes into the history we keep making. Come one, come all and gaze a stare at life in it’s most gracious state of being. Spend your free time feeling the waves wash away your tension, your life in the default world, your sins and your memory of a time when you were not safe within the tube of salt water.
The weatherman smiles big toothy grins and denounces the piggy that would cocoon himself within all that he knows of life here. Why do the stupid little piggies stay here in the path of destruction? Are they all so ignorant that life is precious so long as you run from what everyone fears, except you? Is your petty photo album and insignificant seashell collection more valuable than doing as we say?
Run! Run little piggy for the big bad wolf is upon you and he will eat up your possessions and all that you hold dear!
Watch as we stand upon your beach pointing our pint sized satellite dishes right at your demise. We will record it all for the world to see and ridicule once they click the play button. Spreading the black, oily wings hidden underneath the rain slicker being pushed against their boney legs with the howling wind. Raising the feather tips to catch the gusts for the lens affirming the obvious to the oblivious. Vultures snapping their toothy beaks in time with the rattling dishes in the cupboards.
Boarded windows protecting the glassiness of our eyes but nothing drowns out the roar of the wolf as it swirls in our gardens stripping the flowers of petals grown out of love. Doors closed tight and locked against flying debris run rivers of rain underneath wetting the rug being pulled from under us all.
The ocean that embraced us just the other day where we planted our umbrellas and rainbow colored sand chairs and scooped buckets of sand building fairytale castles has now risen in anger. Damsels in distress cry for mercy as her waves crash atop our roof and pound the security from our hearts. Why have we defied her with our constant need to dispose of bits of our excessive lives into her bosom? Why does she twist in fury? Are we not innocent enough to be spared once again?
We promise to be better citizens and will clean the smoking butts and plastic deposits left behind by careless and carefree vacationers from your gritty mattress of comfort. We will be more diligent in our duty to protect you from filth and abuse. The little piggies clasp their hands together in a prayer and recite unity and community and all that is holy as the world changes to blackness right outside in a place we can not control.
The wolf barks and bites and the vultures circle and caw but nothing can stop the circle of faith and love that would push them from the shore and out to sea if they could. Turning and churning, hugging the coastline until it spins away in spite of the threat to stay one more day.
Laying down to rest, just for a moment, when they can smell the evidence of a sea coming back to where it once belonged. It climbs the banks and invites every drop and then some more to return to it’s cradle. The sea rushes in and rolls over the grass planted and rooted in a place it never was before today. Water laps at the bottoms of stairs and takes them two at a time to show how athletic and strong it can be when applauded as a winner. Leaping up walls built of straw like a tiki hut in a bad B movie. Splashing past vinyl covered wood and tearing it down to the bare bones of beams and shutters it crosses itself in a Hail Mary and pushes the steel girders past their Christmas tinsel limbs.
Safe within the belief that they are meant to be here the piggies hold hands and wait for the sea to embrace or evict them.
I refuse to turn on the television set. All around me friends and loved ones pick up their lives where it was paused so many days ago. Strong smiles and warm hugs as we pile remnants of our collected sorrow beside the road for the unscheduled and spontaneous trash pickup. Traveling roads still moist with storm trappings we settle back under our aprons and smocks and welcome the world to our slice of heaven on earth. Come one, come all and gaze a stare at life in it’s most gracious state of being for none are more resilient, strong and deserving of your respect as the people that have weathered the wolf and lived to tell you all about it.
This little piggy went to market.
This little piggy stayed home.
- Three Little Piggies (bethparkerart.wordpress.com)