The rising moon peaked out from between the hills illuminating the crisp autumn night. Jasper sat on the hill contemplating the stars and various other celestial bodies. He watched as they drew out a pattern a pattern that no others saw.

Laura and Frank had a fight. They called one another vile names, rearranged furniture and broke a dish or two. Frank accused Laura and Laura accused back, and they accused about accusing. Then they cried and they went to bed and had great sex.

Jasper saw all this as the moon came into view and Mars moved behind a cloud. Jasper saw many things. Sometimes he did not want to see them. Sometimes he did. For he saw the best and worst of humanity as well as highly celebrated mediocrity. It was all there in the world around him. The pattern was the same everywhere, for everything was one. But Jasper could see the whole by looking at the piece.

A child crashes his bicycle and scrapes his knee. Jasper is there. He sees as the boy's mother rushes to his aid with hydrogen peroxide and a cookie. Everything is made better except for Jasper. Jasper remains on the hill.

Several Latin American soldiers are blown apart by a landmine. Jasper watches. All the King's horses and all the King's men can't put them back together again. Again. The oldest is barely seventeen. Jasper turns away. The images are coming too fast. He slows them down.


Jasper turns to face the man clad-in-white. He glows in the brilliance of the moonlight. Jasper smiles. The man-clad-in-white has come once again to chase the demons away. Only the purest of Paladins can do this. He who battles and heals will save. Jasper is glad.

"Jasper, it is time for your medication" the doctor says.

"The sky is an interesting thing. The eye can not pierce it's veil. Not really. The scientists study the far off stars with their telescopes but that is not the sky. The sky is more than that, and less. The sky fill you're eye but could not possibly fit there. The sky isn't even blue. Or is it? Does it really matter that the greatest truth is in actuality an illusion?" Jasper, like many mentally ill, wandered his eyes around the room as if waiting for the sky he spoke of to fall.

I seemed to remember once hearing something about the blue sky being caused by the sun reflecting off the oceans or some such thing.

"That's very interesting." I said.

Jasper looked at me with that crazily intense look of his. It was as if the flesh were pealed off my body and he was doing an intense study of my inner organs. Either that or he was trying to discern if there was a stain on my shirt in a very blatant fashion.

"How are you feeling today Jasper?"I asked.

He just looked at me. I was not surprised. the only time Jasper would speak was in a nonsensical poet/philosopher fashion, then he would clam up and return to his world. It was as if, at points he wanted to share parts of his world with me but never wanted to take part in the real world. He never spoke straight forward or answered my questions.

"Today I am going to study you,"Jasper said, looking me straight in the eye, something he never did. I felt an itching in the back of my skull but tried to ignore t, tried to put off the uncomfortableness of his look and pursue what I perceived as a breakthrough.

"What do you mean?"the quaver entered my voice. Though Jasper had sometimes been unnerving we had always been separated by reality and fantasy. Now he had stepped enough into reality to focus on me.

He just stared at me...

The session ended shortly thereafter. Jasper pulled off into his own world again. Which was fine for me. I was a bit shaken. After he left I just sat and pondered the look he had given me. I was roused by the sound of the tape recorder clicking off. I usually taped the sessions with my patients so I could review them at another time. I pulled the tape from the deck and put it in a case. Taking out a label I wrote down Jasper's name and the date, stuck it to the cassette then put it in the drawer. I straightened up the papers on my desk and put them in my briefcase. I stood up and began to close my briefcase then stopped. I let is spring back up. Pulling open the desk drawer I took the cassette, placed it in the case then closed it. I walked out of my office, said goodnight to Judy, the receptionist at her desk as well as several colleagues. After walking out the front door and down the steps I turned once to look at the hospital, paused at the door then slowly, almost against my will, my eyes began to wander up and to the right. Past one window and then another until finally they came to rest on.. an.. empty.. window. I could see nothing in the room and hoped that nothing could see me. I turned... slowly... keeping my eyes on the window while walking to my car.

Tearing my eyes away from the window I forced myself to unlock and open the car door; climb in; start the engine; slowly release the parking brake; roll out of the parking space that read L. Michaels and pull into traffic.

Pulling into my driveway I hit the little button that activates my automatic garage door opener. Technological marvel, magic, or both I muse as I shut off the engine. The engine sputters it's last gasps for the day then dies until I resurrect it tomorrow. I close the garage door. My heart is pounding and my mind racing. Where are these thoughts coming from I ask. Has working with loonies finally made me looney? Or is my secret lunacy what drove me to study psychology like dear Papa Freud? I sit for a moment pondering this. I finally reach the conclusion that I'm just tired and a little spooked by Jasper.

My wife is beautiful as always, but tonight I notice.
"You look beautiful tonight,"I say.
She looks at me, cocks her head and smiles,"Have you done something wrong?"
"Huh,"I reply, taken off guard.
"Never you mind,"she says,"Maybe I will keep you after all."
"That's very kind of you,"I reply, looking around the room for something I can not see.
"You bet it is,"she calls from another room.

The bookcase is dusty. A small sheet of dust covers my books. Knowledge from minds spread across the centuries. Jung, Freud, Aristotle, Socrates. My books? Can a thought be owned? The last rays of the setting sun leave swathes of light on the sofa. There is an impression on the third cushion. I look above it to the still crooked picture of my father-in-law. He smiles at me. A chair is slightly ajar at the table. Before it are papers with writing, a pen, and a still steaming mug of coffee. I look past the steam to the pages. More thoughts.

"Honey?"my wife say from the doorway sounding concerned.
Turning the world goes into slow motion, stalls, then starts again.
"Is something wrong?"she says coming toward me.

My heart speeds up. My blood races. I take her in my arms and press my lips to hers. She responds writhing in my grasp caught up in the heat of my excitement. My hands caress her body finding the small of her back, her breast, her thighs. I hurriedly pull her shirt off and fumble with her bra clasp. Opening this I grasp her and the two of us fall to the floor writhing and panting as if we were in heat. Finally tearing the last of the clothing from our bodies we join together in a way only man and woman can. Thrusting and heaving I finally give myself up. Loosing my control for one small moment in orgasm.

And one small moment is all he needs. My mind explodes while my body shudders. The world melts away as the stars fall in on themselves. My mind expands with his and we are one as all is one as black become white and energy, matter and planets die and stars heave as babies breath and dogs sneeze as grass grows and comets fly and fish frown and space flies the universe looms and all is one the dog and tree and rock and mite and muse and house and man and fly and star and moon and void is all one! One! ONE! I see as the cells of a living being the planets as organs and the stars and the void and beyond is ALL! ALL! ALL!

Then it's over. I can hear my wife cooing gently as she hold my weeping form running her fingers through my hair.
"What is it?"I hear her say,"What's the matter?"
"The sky is not blue."