When Night Falls
by Tianna Grosch
(hybrid creative nonfiction/flash)
published at Mojave He[art] Review, August issue 2018
Have you ever noticed when you fall into the night, the only light to greet you is the moon? Of course, but have you soaked its radiance from the sky like warm drops of milk, its speckled beauty wrapped in the tug of gravity upon your heart? The moon with its full belly and wise eyes begs you to release your hold upon earthen grass and wander up to dance among the rays of spotted starlight.
Before the night takes hold, there are vibrant pinks, oranges, a swaddle of bright beauty before the world is handed to the dark. Purple fingers stretch across an open expanse of sky, the sun’s final grip before nightfall claims ownership. Just like the deep purple bruises always fade to black upon your skin, tender to touch and ugly as sin. Nightfall claims your beauty too. But the sun shines again.
Night is always the worst, when the color drains from your surroundings, when your body completes its cycle, the monthly call of ritual wilderness bringing you back to your making, to the blood and skin, you cry out to the moon more. Your breasts grow heavy with the weight of ancient sins and your belly aches, quivering with the pains. Only once you forgive will your body remain free. Once you lift your feet off the gas, speeding toward unknown destinations, pushing the limits, ignoring the law and breaking the rules - a flash of red and blue in your rearview mirror and pound of your heart asking whether you’ll stop or scream at the world, you cannot stop me?
You are going to defeat him, his grip on you. You are not your rape, you are not your pain. You are glorious - fragile lace of moonlight drenched upon your naked skin.