The day was crisp and precise. The grey clouds hung over the lush green canopy of trees. The black road curled quietly between the rising hills. It was a thin road, barely allowing two lanes of traffic to pass by unhindered. The snaking curves of asphalt were hemmed on one side by a brown wall of earth overshadowed by dew-stung trees. The other edge of the road gently fell away at a mossy cliff.

A woman walked up the road. She kept close to the dark earth and stayed under the nodding boughs of the trees. She carried a bag in each hand. Her back was arched under the weight of walking up the steep incline. Her hair hung loose and free. The winds were still and placid.

A car hummed up the hill. It swung around the side of the road and went past the woman and drove up beyond the curving asphalt to disappear into the green heights. Its engine sounded out an assured thrum in the fresh air. Then, with an unyielding splutter, the wheels could be heard coming to a stop and the engine died.

Silence droned out. The woman walked on. With a high-pitched yell, the car began to reverse down the snaking asphalt. It stopped when it was roughly opposite the woman. The door swung open. A shiny boot was thrust out and hung, paused, above the ground. With great hesitance, the foot pressed against the black surface of the road and a man stepped out of the car. He left his vehicle perched near the cliff’s edge while he stood silhouetted against the grey musk of the clouds.

He stared at the woman. His breath came out in soft, visible spirals of smoke from his open mouth and dry lips. The woman soon stopped walking but appeared unwilling to turn and look at the man. He took three steps toward her and then stood perfectly still in the middle of the road. She finally turned to return his stare.

They looked at each other. The silence and precision of the cold mountain air fitted the dangerous mood of this sudden, delicately poised fixation.

Another car could now be heard in the distance, coming down the hill unseen. The two could not move. The noise of this car’s engine grew louder and louder and the car neared the curve around which it would soon swing and near the pair who stood facing each other at the exact centre of the road.

Before it reached them, the car swerved, desperately. It swerves to avoid a tree that had at that very moment fallen across the road. The vehicle swings madly around the curve of the black road, narrowly missing the sprawling mess of boughs and limbs, and, narrowly missing the parked car, it careens through the middle of the road, narrowly missing the woman, and hits the standing man.

Long, long ago, before many of us would count time, the first clouds raced over the peaks, turning and coiling, clotting together with the thick air.

Soon, ever so small, gentle, and minute droplets of rain glimmered in the white strands above, shaking softly before one by one coming to land upon the hard outcrops and precipices of the mountain top, where they were greedily licked up by the thirsty earth, leaving but shallow traces in the clay, waiting, until, joined by more droplets themselves waiting, they gained weight, and in this way over time, as more water fell, firstly in scattered drippings, then thin rivulets, then wild smatterings, each pouring onto on the mountain heights, building and thickening under a timely summoned heavy hail tearing the high places with gale winds and forbidding black clouds, so this shallow trail of water quickly drunk by the earth thus thickened, twisted, and bore down hard and fast, a steady groove into the helpless soil, to form a curving trickle, and a growing stream, and a hurtling flow, and ultimately a raging, snaking river, undrinkable by the earth, that could be heard and smelt as it shredded the mountain slopes with long fingers leaving behind a winnowing necklace of swinging torrents and falls and ponds spotting and slicing the mountain in twain, its waters raging in furious wealth to coagulate into broad rivers and flat lakes at the base of the weakened and hollowed slopes, which in turn, slowly and surely, began to taste the gentle whisk of zephyrs that spun over the now nude and stripped shoulders of the watery paths, which played their part, humble and sure, in dusting grains of sand and clods of clay off stone, brushing away the rock faces with a tender touch, gentle windy fingers, occasionally gaining the courage to build up into mad rushes and swinging breezes and freezing storms driven in mad cyclonic flocks under the whips of banshee gales, screaming and echoing through the winnowed mountain in biting fury, learning to claw at piecemeal stone so as to soften sharp edges and dull plateaus of rock into distinct boulders, into isolated crags and cliffs, into tumbling stones, into smooth pebbles, and lastly into shards of glassy sand left exposed to the fingers of the winds which in turn picked them up and cast them far up into the immeasurable heights and spaces of the sky to never again land in mortal sight but rather to glide like the eagles, riding cool eddies high, out and up and above the very oceans who are descended from and antecedent to the first droplets which once fell on the mountain’s crumbling tip, where thin sheets of glass began fattening into glacial planks thicker than the crust of the mountain earth, bearing down with weight to crush tree and grass and dust and loam, the children of their own grandmother waters, these strong glaciers, endlessly spreading in steady entropy with a ponderous force, a huge wave that melted over slopes eaten by wind and water until, without warning or farewell, this sea of vast ice plates snapped, cracked, and ripped, their icy talons dug now so deep into the last tenuous flesh of the earth that they had the brute teeth to tear rock from rock and dirt from dirt in vast and tiny fissures erupting out of the precipices and winding down the crumbling slopes, effectively pulling out the hollowed heart of the mountain interior, until finally, inevitably, inexorably, with a soft sigh that lifted clouds of dust to circle the sky in heavy repose, after a millennium of simultaneous growth and decay, ultimately, by water, wind and ice, the isolated and unknown mountain fell down, an enormity undiscovered, a giant unnameable, leaving behind only one epitaph chiseled out by the hand of this transcendent yet ludicrous oracular prophet, yes, but one solitary mark of the collapse, sent as an emissary under the circling mass of black clouds by the means of an unheard tremor which shook the neighbouring mountains and rung out, a bouncing echo, from deep within the darkest depths below the earth, causing only the largest and surest of trees to shake in such a manner that as they shivered and shook, one after the other, they passed on an infection of trembling which rocked each tree from root to tip, at first minutely, from tree to tree and forest to forest, then with infallible bombast, so that wherever the ironwood stood this shaking travelled with momentous snaking vibration, monstrous yet subtle a song, until one tree, yes, that tree, far away from the original collapse, ended this union of tremors by carefully ripping up its roots and toppling across a black road, whereupon it bounced twice, barely missing a hurtling car, rolled to the curb, and was still, thus finished: a fitting funeral to an unremembered mountain buried deep in wild, innumerable peaks.

Maheesha adheres to ways of the mountains. Please comment below, message him here, or throw him a few bucks for this effort.