We were merely children when the stars came.
They rained down from the sky in a burst of light, like shards of glass pouring down from the heavens. Supernovas blooming in the night sky, petals raining down onto the barren earth - angels, falling with their wings sheathed, glowing, as they glided down. We watched, starstruck, as the glow overtook us - we were mesmerized. We waited with bated breath as the meteors landed, the celestial light subsiding as dark forms started to pick themselves up from the dust.
They moved towards us with an otherworldly grace, their steps leaving no marks on the earth as they descended upon us. Frozen to our spots as they approached, our bodies simply unresponsive in their wake. We were paralyzed. They stretched out their wings, embracing us in a softness unimaginable - a polymerization of silky feathers made of pure light, like a soft touch of a rose petal - and suddenly, our eyes were opened. The world was the same, yet so new, as it was washed with a glistening overlay of an indescribable sight. Everything was sharpened, yet softened. As we marveled at the sights, we felt a bittersweet pull to our cores - a unnerving certainty that one day, the stars would return to take back this gift which was rightfully theirs, that this was to be shared and not kept. We had no word to describe this new sight, no word beautiful enough, no word powerful enough - but finally, we gave it a simple name.
With that, a flood of new words was created to describe the spectrum of color that had been given to us - red, orange, green, yellow - the list went on as humans discovered newfound beauty in mundane, everyday things. We lived life to the fullest, and yet, we did not appreciate it while it lasted - even now, I remember it only in a haze, like a half-forgotten dream tugging on the reaches of your brain as you forget it in the rush of a new day - a beauty that exists only in my dreams, a sensation unreachable to us now, a state of pristine anoesis. Sometimes, I wonder if it was simply a dream, a hallucination, a delicate paracosm shattered by the ramblings of an unstable mind.
(though, would that make it any less beautiful?)
The stars offered us a simple agreement - as they had granted the gift of color to us, they would one day return to take it back - and return they did, a second cloud of fire descending through the stratosphere as we waited with an awed dread - we knew what was coming, and yet we stood rooted to the spot as they came to take the color away from us once again. We could do nothing as the iridescence faded from our sight again, leaving us in a monochrome world of what we had once called "black" and "white." Ironically, it was only then - once the color had left our eyes - that we could finally see the stars for what they really were.
They were not angels, nor were they simply stars. They were pure manifestations of light, of ideas, clouds of chroma that touched our cores as they drifted past us. They existed on a different plane, and we knew then that we could never understand them, nor could we ever hope to. However, we understood this - we had been changed. We had been altered irreversibly, fibres of our very being sewn into a grander tapestry. As their color left us, we replaced it with our own. After that, we were different. Flashes of a all-consuming emotion would take us, and leave in their wake art which emanated a faint trace of those tantalizing colours which had once been ours. Paintings, literature, it made no difference - the color was nonetheless present, yet painfully ephemeral. Eventually, we invented a moniker for the feeling - simple, yet complex in its origins.
We called it inspiration, and the stars we renamed muses, for their very presence inspired us to create.
And who knows?
Perhaps one day, we shall witness their descent once more.