Janine and her husband, Bill, are shelters for one another. She protects his dark outer shell that so many seem to despise, while he shields her from things that block her path. She is blind. But though her eyes are dead, she knows the world goes round and round, that the sun rises and sets each day. She knows with winter the world sleeps beneath an icy mantle, and in spring it opens its eyes and unfolds warm blankets of color. She knows the sun illuminates the moon and the stars are as countless as her dreams. She knows that seconds tick into minutes, minutes into hours, hours into days, days into weeks, weeks into months, and months into years. Her dead eyes cannot see, but they still can cry and often do. And when they do, her Bill holds her and his voice is a moth lighting upon her ear.
“When a cloud holds moisture too long,” he whispers, “it swells until it bruises. Then, it hurls its pain into every direction. So, weep my little cloud. Weep.”
When Janine cries, she thinks of her mother and father living behind walls so thick and doors locked so securely, no one can get in. But even worse, they can’t get out.