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  • Alan Allinger

Escape or Remain


Mother and I were sharing a walk and talking about how we saw the world this week. At some point our walks wind down in speed and we share a shaker of cocktails, because she’s ¾’s Irish and I’m ½ Danish, and libations help improve our communication skills. She pointed at the light escaping from its jar of clouds above the treeline.

“If you look at the clouds, it seems what we mis-learned from Pandora’s Box has thankfully been forgotten in the general shuffle,” she mused. “I always heard from my grandmother that this box was made from clouds, with a glass lid and golden handles.”

“As I recall a lot of dark things escaped when the lid was opened, and they slapped the top back onto the box to keep Hope from escaping,” I replied. She nodded.

“Yes, so the story goes, but you know it was Epimetheus that actually opened it. The box belonged to Pandora, but she was sensible and a worrier too, and would have left it sealed. Something along the lines of, here’s a sharp knife, don’t cut yourself with it to see if it works.”

“Are you concerned with shifting the blame to Epimetheus? The number of mortals that care about whether or not Prometheus had a brother diminishes by the year.” Mother shook her head at my attempted levity.

“No, not exactly, my concern is that the logic is badly flawed. If all the evils that have beset mankind came from the box, Hope must be allowed to fly free too, along with all the bad things. How can monsters be defeated if hope is locked away from everyone’s reach?” She swirled her goblet, listening to the ice clink musically against the metal. “At the end of the day during a difficult time like this, I’d like to see Pandora go ahead and open the top of the cloud-box so as much light can make it’s way to us as possible.”

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