The Goddess

by Levi James Baldwin III

As the police and I looked at her lifeless corpse, I see all the beauty and grace that I always have. I see that which made me love her and think of her as a goddess, and I can't help but talk about her.

While I weep tears of the forlorn, I tell them she was incredible... she could've had the very world at her feet. Everyone she ran into was instantly in love with her. Whether it be man or beast, all who talked to her or witnessed her beauty bolonged to her. And talented... oh my she was talented. She could imagine a picture in her head and in seconds she would be at her stencil. Brow furrowed and eyes squinted as she worked in deep concentration, you could see the passion in her eye. As if by magic, the picture would slowly appear before you, so real it seemed that it could come right off the paper. Yes, gentlemen, it's the truth. She would paint scenery so real if you got close enough you could almost hear the water bubbling in a brook or smell the grass in a sunlit meadow.

My sadness weighs my shoulders down as if I have the sorrow of a thousand hearts. Yet I continue to tell of her greatness, because they must know and understand the goddess that lays before them, and not think of her as another mere corpse to be stuffed in their shiny black bags that look like cocoons with zippers. I sigh deeply and wipe the pieces of my bleeding soul from my eyes and continue with the tale. It's too bad this happened. It really is because I loved her so much and she will be missed by so many.

I remember not long ago she would take walks down Main St. and guys would whip their heads around so fast they would get kinks in their necks. Sometimes she would grace one of her many suitors by letting him take her out to lunch. I would watch the look of total amazement and happiness in his eye, and I would sit on our porch and just laugh till I felt I would burst. Yet she was not vain nor conceited nor any of the ugly vanities that most women of beauty wear around them like a undergarment. She said to me once that if she pledged her love to a man it was his for life. That amazed me since that kind of trait is so rarely seen anymore in these times we live in.

Her heart was the only thing in her larger than her talent. She seemed to have endless room in her heat for love. Whether you were rich or poor, black or white, it didn't matter. She would love you for you. It also didn't matter where she met you. In a dirty alley she was curious about or a public park on a sunny day, it never mattered to her. I begin to cry again great shuttering sobs. I feel an officer's hand on my shoulders and silently thank him for the support. The words I can say are "she will be missed by so". Then I look one more time into the face of the woman who was my angel for the last three years and send her my love.

As they move her from the apartment I called home for the last three years I hear one officer tell another how sad it is that she died. He tells his fellow partner how he knew her personally and even possessed some of her artwork. He says to him, too bad she died, cause she was really, really, good. I listen for a moment and feel his grief over her loss, feeling his pain as I have felt so many others that day.

As they bag and mark the butcher knife that was found by her body, I think of the many people she had touched in her life. The milkman, butcher, mail woman, trashman, and how could I forget the fifteen year old paper boy who would even visit on Saturday, his day off. Since my body seems frozen, an officer is nice enough to give me a little push forward, and I think how she loved so very many. As they lead me out the door, blood soaked hands cuffed tightly behind my back, a disturbing thought cuts through my grief like a lawnmower through grass or a knife through flesh.

...Maybe I shouldn't have killed her.

The Goddess by Levi James Baldwin III

© Copyright 2000. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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