by Anna Sthetic

I wish I were able to pinch the air apart with my fingertips and tease the secret whispers out of it. I wish I could discern who had breathed it in, what sins and good deeds had battered it about, what molecules its component atoms had been bonded into previously.

I wish the nitrogen knew when and where it would be fixed, split into fertilizer by lightning strikes or nematode worms or the Haber process. I wish it were able to tell me, share its future and its past as I pinched it apart, catching it out of the breeze before it entered my lungs.

I wish I were able to pull apart the air and persuade it to give up its secrets in minute whispers.

I wish that my touch were light enough, my fingers deft enough, my fingers sharp enough to catch the minute whispers which contain the secrets of the air.

I wish I were able.

I am unable.

When I try, I clutch only handfuls of nothing.

(For the Daily Post Challenge. Do not like English subjunctives. DO NOT LIKE. Clumsy. Ugly. But it was interesting to try.)