Post Your Entry!
MONDAY, JULY 04, 2011
In Barcelona, there is a man in the square. Passers-by pay him little to no attention. He is the colour of a chocolate bar left uneaten for too long: his epidermis is patched with chalk, but maintains a surprising smoothness.

On his face, a wiry and inconsistent beard is overgrown. His hair is spotted with white, and he wears a backpack overtop of his thread-bare, holey t-shirt. A plastic bag weighs him down on one side - it is likely the one thing keeping his feet from lifting off the ground. His gaze is upwards toward the bright glowing sun; he pays no attention to the grandeur and opulence of the square in which he stands. A rich cathedral is the focal point of the area, while down the ways a short distance there is a beautifully tiled modern market.

Tourists and locals mill throughout the plaza like marbles scattering at random from their centre. They squint up at the towering facade of the cathedral although it is obscured mostly by scaffolding and netting. Usually, the people find themselves looking at the cathedral only for a short spell; ultimately, they opt to look around at each other. They watch the New Orleans jazz band who have mysteriously and silently rolled a ragtime piano in front of the cathedral. They play their uppity tunes for the crowd. Eyes rove, lids blink, people watch people.

They do not, however, fixate their stares upon the dusty chocolate man with the backpack and the plastic bag. This is peculiar, particularly because this specific man has a bouquet of helium-inflated balloons representing all colours of the rainbow attached to his nondescript backpack. They float behind him, bobbing contentedly. For a moment, he is still. He glances around quickly - an expression of neutrality with a hint of confusion crosses his face. The balloons bump the back of his wiry head, reminding him of their presence. He begins moving again; his movement is unique and solely circular. He moves forward only through a series of circles, outlining the shape of the sun on the cobblestones.

Turning, turning, turning, the balloons follow him infinitely through his spherical journey. Meanwhile, his stare remains upwards. Arms hang at his side, swinging like ribbons around the maypole. It is midday and the god Ra rules the sun. Ra’s Bennu bird is perched on his shoulder: a symbol of fire and rebirth. The Bennu bird calls to Balloon Man so only he can hear. Sometimes, he has to stop in the midst of the crowd while straining to hear the bird’s call. The message is finally received once he finishes his path across the square. As he rounds the corner, his plastic bag falls from his side and the balloons lift his dusty shoes off the ground and he ascends towards the sun.

But, of course, no one sees.



This obviously isn't a "true" story, but it is a true story.



the balloon man is real, i just didn't get to see where he ended up!

Forget your password?
Don't have an account? Sign Up, it's free!
Most Discussed Articles Top Articles Top Writers