A Good Wish

The smoke from a thousand burnt offerings rise from the altar to the sky, and he tries not to breathe in the smell of roast flesh. It reminds him briefly of a magic trick, and for a moment, he allows his eyes to be deceived.

He’s been given a free wish, which feels more like a question, and he’s not sure what the right answer is. It reminds him of the “what if” games he’d play as a child, but now that he’s in the exact situation that was once posed to him, he doesn’t know whether the answer of his five-year-old self would be appropriate.

If only he could know, for sure, in every situation the answer would come…and he gets a flash of inspiration, and wisdom falls into his lap.

From that day on, he could safely say that the phrase “I don’t know” was erased from his vocabulary.

However, as he grows older and ages with wisdom hovering by his side, he realises that at some point in history it had migrated from his side to his shoulders. And great wisdom cannot exist without great knowledge, and with great knowledge comes with a greater ability to ignore certain truths and wisdoms, because he feels that if he does the right thing, the wise thing all the time, he would go crazy by being less human. He’d be less by becoming more than a human being, and despite the wisdom being a gift – a fulfilled wish – he often wonders if he’d made a good wish.

It’s the last and only “I don’t know” he takes to his grave, and the first answer he finds in his afterlife.


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