Notes from the Rooftop

I am a graceful man, a charming, becoming man. Oh! Who am I kidding! I’m no man at all!

I am a weak and bumbling fool who, even after all this time, struggles to rise above his station. An ungainly creature with a heart of stone, whose gawky attempts at flight is an embarrassment to my kind!

Eight hundred years I’ve tried, and eight centuries I’ve failed. I struggle with flight as a writer struggles with words or a painter with colour. And yet, for centuries, I have flown across your rooftops each night. I say ‘flown’ but, ‘blundering attempts at not crashing’ would be a better description!

And yet, despite my clumsy failings, I’ve always done my best. But nobody sees. Nobody notices as I protect this city from the ancient evil that roams. And sometimes I say, it’s just as well! I would crumble inside each time if anybody saw me flailing like a maniacal piece of rock through the moonlit sky. I must be quite a sight!

But I’m afraid now my wings are far too worn and will not fly again; my face is battered by constant wind and rain and takes on its own sad expression, my eyes are eroding. And soon I will crumble to dust.

But after all this time, after all the trying and failing, the dreaming and yearning, the worst part is not that I’m condemned with a heart of stone, it’s not that I was cursed to be a hideous, clumsy gargoyle. No, the worst part is, despite these failings, all my struggles and battles against darkness have gone unnoticed each and every night.

To you I’m just a Gothic bullet-point in the pages of history; a grotesque curiosity leering down from your cathedral to be snapped at; nothing more than a monstrous, winged oddity born out of fear and pity.

You’d think after eight hundred years you’d get used to feeling like this, but you don’t.

© 2016 Occasional Dreams
In response to daily prompt: Clumsy
Image: “Gargoyle” by Laura K Gibb / CC BY


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