A billowing cloud of sand and dust rises in the east, sliding across the horizon in front of the poking head of the sun. The air is dry, and the clay roof the boy sits on crumbles a bit as he shifts, watching the sun rise across the vast desert. It is quite welcome to the boy after the long night. The sun means a new day. A new beginning. He looks down at the rusty oil lamp in his hands and runs a finger along the bumpy contour.
One more rub, however, and he knows what will happen. He has read the stories. Nothing could make him happier than to have his wildest dreams suddenly come to life before his eyes. That temptation for a quick grab at happiness has rooted itself deep down in his person, stretching branches out to his limbs in an effort to control his actions. No one else would hesitate as he has. the boy knows this.
But that was what the night had been for. The silent, contemplative night spent alone, with the natural world as his only companion. He had breathed in the cool desert air and watched the moon rise and fall, basking in its silvery glow as he weighed his choices.
Now, weary and faint from lack of sleep, the boy stands up and clambers down the roof of one of the many clay buildings clustered together. He jogs to the middle of town, rushing before his nerves leave him, and stops at the well. Grabbing a loose brick from the structure he straps it to the rusty lamp and lets it fall into the clear water with an echoing glump!
The boy takes a deep breath. Now it doesn’t matter what his dreams are. And maybe he’ll never reach them now. But he doesn’t mind much. Not really.
The important thing is that he still has them.