No sound emerged from the strangled throat. It was the scream of nightmares, the ones that are drowned in silence, smothered under air as thick as water.
She screamed but no one heard. She stood among them but still they did not hear her. Their ears were not open. Their hearts were closed.
She had fear and so the sound would not come. The wounds were too deep - a millennia of torture, humiliation and persecution. Her voice, her words, her light and power extinguished each time. It was not safe to be seen and so she hid.
But the scream inside her said she could no longer hide. Her fear had become a coat of hornets. Intolerable. Insufferable. Suffocating. The need to be heard was getting stronger than the terror.
The next day, she emerged among them again and screamed – again. This time a few heard. They recognized the pain of their own suppression. They remembered an ancient calling. Yes, they heard the scream but they also knew fear and so they turned away from the howl, turned away from their own wounds.
But it had been enough. A spark. An opening. Soon they too would be unable to hide.
On the third day, she arose and her throat was clear. She was a wolf and a lion. Her light was bright and unyielding. She had met her fear, eye to eye, scream for scream until it crumbled in her arms like a hurt child and she kissed it. She thanked the terror for trying to keep her safe and let it go.
Now, she entered the crowded streets. The sky was wide and blue, unfiltered. The sun warmed her crown. She spread her arms and lifted her chest. She did not care if they stared or even if they heard.
She opened her lips and screamed. But instead of a cry of despair, a song emerged and flew with feathered wings across the world. And the notes and tones turned to light. Flowers opened. Birds danced and sang between the medleys. The Earth sighed and rested her burdens, purred. The trees stood straighter, prouder.
Those that heard her would never be the same. Some would join her and scream by her side in strength and healing. Some would run and hide and curse as their own lack and pain sprouted to be remembered. And others would feel the beginning cracks of their own screams, of their own coat of hornets that would eventually lead them home.
But - all would be changed.