The dusty photographs drift past her outstretched fingertips, like feathers blown by the storm she is. Drifting, drifting, almost weightless—the word is almost—she feels her throat lock in an attempt to calm down. Memories are nothing to be scared of. Remembering is what scared her.
She has to—she has a moral duty to go back and peek at the feather photographs, dripping past her fingers as evasive as water has always been. But here—here in her own mind—everything is possible. She can conjure water out of thin air and change the memories in the photographs with a snap of her frail fingers.
Pulling her face from her frail fingers, she peeks at the memory closest to her. It is them, together. Her and her—friends, sisters, souls. Her and him—lovers, haters, enemies. But are they really? She snorts contemptuously at the photo before kicking it far, faraway.
She flicks her fingers out, and the photograph memories fly into one small, contained tornado out the infinitely faraway door. No matter how much she wants to walk outside and relax in the sunshine, the door is too far. She has tried to reach infinity—oh yes, she’s tried—and failed.
The only source of light comes from the window, a dusty sunlight filtering through the old room. It sits upon the old floorboards, turning the splintery stuff into honey and evoking the smell of old books.
The bookshelves—oh! the bookshelves—are in two rows, tall enough for her to reach. And they stretch out towards infinity, not quite touching the door, but far enough that she can spend her own infinity reading the numerous books and never reach the end.
And this is how she is—reduced to memories in this long hall with no one else to amuse her but imagination. We are all history in the end—we are become ink in books and old parchment and raw earth.
She, too, knows she will become ink very soon and another—a boy, perhaps—shall take her place and become ink himself. Together, they shall revel in the stories as the last of their kind until they realize there is too little ink to account for all their trials and woes, and they will become one sentence on a page at the end of infinity. To this fate, she is secure.
– – –
This is what I envision my mind palace to be like: lonely but secure.