Having never heard a voice like this before, Charles Potashner stopped everything he was doing to fully focus his attention on what it was saying. Speaking slowly, the voice identified itself as God. Charles had not believed in any gods since he was a small child. Even as a kid he had his doubts. His mum had dragged him through endless nativity scenes and Christian megachurch gift shops and bought him WWJD paraphernalia for years. He had been going both to children’s bible school classes and the standard adult Sunday masses. But the stories from The Holy Bible seemed out of sync with his experiences with reality regardless of whether they were taken literally or metaphorically. He had prayed alone at night for both himself and his family, but he couldn’t help but think he would be surprised if the prayers were ever answered. Still, he hoped they would be. And they never were.
Having introduced itself, the voice went on to say “Charles, everything that has ever needed to be created has been created, everything that has ever meant to be made has been made, it’s time to clean up this mess that we’ve been making, it’s time to save what can be saved.” And then as suddenly as it had appeared, the voice vanished and Charles was left alone in his thoughts. He felt a little less energetic than he had before. It really was quite a discouraging thing for a booming voice inside his own skull to be saying. Charles had been enjoying the snaking light rail construction and the growing of the flora in Simone. Now, hearing that nothing further should be made really put a damper on his enthusiasm for the future.
He looked to the ducks, searching their beady eyes for answers. Had this voice actually been God? He doubted it. It was probably some sort of hallucination. There must be some reasonable explanation. The ducks looked back and he felt his bond with them beginning to restore itself. The tension between creatures of the swamp and the ducks had been building, but now, to his relief, he felt his connection with the ducks’ return.
A stronger than usual wind blew, moving through forty-six thousand feathers, and tiny ripples shot across the top of the pond. Cirrocumulus clouds decorated the sky above with kind ripples that reminded him of latte art, and Charles wished he could have a coffee.