Basking in the light of the drawn veil, the branches of the trees reach for the stars. Pinching them with their leaves the same way a grandmother squeezes the cherub cheeks of a child, they pluck them from out of the sky before flicking them like marbles into deep space where no doubt they’re sucked into oblivion by some lurking black hole. Resembling the figurehead of a ship, Hachikō watches with a grin from the uppermost branches. Salivating the same as Meeko, he observes the tears flowing from her eyes as if each were the glowing face of a believer in the act of praying to the good lord above. Not tears of sadness, though, nor tears of joy, but those born out of the wreckage of a spiritual revelation. It’s not that Meeko has never before considered the idea of something beyond the visible realm, but there’s a big difference between being open to the existence of something, and knowing that that certain something exists. Gasping for air as if emerging from the depths of some great abyssal sea, I see what she sees, and as her father’s cosmic hand strokes her pale face, what had been darkness only moments before is a shimmering pool of possibility; the atoms of a dead man rearranged into an infinite number of changing forms, as fleeting as the feelings that captivate a heart. Her own heart is wounded, and yet his touch heals the wounds the same way sun melts snow, and as her sorrows flow down the strip behind us, I know that if I’m to do one thing of meaning with my life, then it’s to somehow capture miracles such as these and put them into words capable of speaking the truths I’m incapable of doing any other way.