The Cave

Once upon a time I found a cave.

It had a narrow entrance and smooth damp walls.  At the very back, just above where I could reach, a fleck of light played, bathing the walls in delicate freckled patterns that spun about on some ray of sunlight that had, in a majestic fit of wonder, made its way through the stone.

So much did I desire this light, that I moved a boulder and stood upon it.  Digging my fingers into the walls, I was determined to draw forth what I knew as buried treasure.  Surely, I told myself as my nails dug into the hardened surface, it was a gem of great worth.  The anxious feeling running through me told me that I would not be satisfied until I had it for my very own.  And so I picked and prodded and gauged until my fingers were raw and bleeding and could dig no more.

Aching and exhausted, I sank to the floor, allowing puddled water to soak through my clothes until it met my skin.  Bumps formed, running down my arms like a wave as I shivered in the almost-darkness.  But as I looked up around the walls at the dim ever-playing light, the perspective changed and the gem-light deepened, spreading a glow across every surface until the cave seemed as if it had been lit on fire.  And in an instant all mad desire left me as soon as it had come; I was free.

For, in the end, I was captivated by the beauty.

And that was enough.

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