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You Will Get There Too.

May 30, 2011

While it’s been quiet in these parts in recent months, the story is different for my stomach. Exams, essays, and applications have pushed it to the Brink. At first, I was shocked that an organ could make such loud noises, but now I just try to stay beyond earshot of most people. Not to be too detailed (as I myself am quite squeamish) but these groans are incredibly loud – louder even than the rumble of my stomach as I’m stuck in traffic on a clear day. But where the rumbles can be settled by a nudge on the accelerator or a venting scowl as I pass the reckless accident causers, my current predicament is beyond treatment. The loudest groans happen when I think of sitting in the sunless interview room, under the flicking fluorescent light that is sure to illuminate every pore, every fleck of doubt I took care to conceal. Yes, I have true concern for others. No, I don’t mind abandoning creative thought.

— Where the sun sings high over brisk mountain air, in that valley of your dreams where neither man nor beast dare roam, your burdens shall be set aflame. Glowing, you sway as you never have before; over water, upon branches, within flowers that blossom only for a night before their sweet demise. Swinging forcefully still, you land on a ledge of unimaginable height and squint to see that tiny dot – the ashes of worry, of deprivation, of hollowness below. —

I imagined walking through the front door.
I imagined bending down to kiss our rescued orange tabby and yelling What a delightful song you sent me at work, darling! When can we see the show? over the sizzle of Steak Night. The steaks would be Yellowfin tuna; we would be pescetarians. Work would not involve the words deoxyribonucleic acid. Or nano-drop. Or How are you today? Alllright! It might pay an amount equal to the current job which, while laughable, is sufficient for this spectacularly unhappening city. But we would have already made our great escape, wouldn’t we? To Pena Blanca. Or Santa Fe. Or some similar town not yet carved bare by quenchless tractors. Pulling up to our new home, I’ll crawl out the passenger window and pronounce This is it, exactly as I had envisioned in my dream!
Is that so? Just like this, with my arm around your neck? And that crooked window with the rotting shutters?
Yes, of course. Even the wind blowing your hat before you catch it. And that tree that appears to be shedding, its branches spread wide like airplane wings.

I would then turn to see a face like so many other faces. But unlike the other faces, this assemblage of skin, hair, and bone instantly and magically triggers something more, like cubs rolling through grassy knolls.
You will set the table, and I will give you the bigger slice of pie.
Exactly so, darling. Just like this.

Or maybe we wouldn’t escape together. What if, bravely defying my deep fear of the unknown, I made the venture on my own, and we meet only as a result of my newfound intrepidness? Leaving work with my last pay check in hand, a coworker will stop to wish me farewell. In her eyes I will see that she notices something different, a new way. That is the look of courage, she will think, That is the look of a man who knows his heart, a man on the verge of new vistas. I open my arms in a way that says, It’s alright, my dear, you will get there too and we embrace for an amount of time that is inordinate for near strangers. After squeezing the last box of winter wear into my trunk, I’ll take one last look at the stark apartment. The odors of last week and the week before are nearly gone. Sitting on the spot where the loveseat used to be, I’ll unfold the map to make one last study of its forms and passageways. You could be anywhere. You could be that speck below the river shaped like pubes. I trace the shortest path from here to that speck with my small finger and walk to the car just as a thick rain blurs the distance between the windshield and the road.

— The universe is, in fact, never still. Even when you’re lying under mountains of water, your heart pounding through your ears as if no other sound ever can or ever will exist. Even in the farthest, blackest reaches of space, where the very first echo of the very first bang that started this whole scheme has yet to make its way. Think of this as you sit waiting for the next breath. —

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. June 20, 2011 7:03 pm

    stranger,
    i do not know who you are, but if you escape to somewhere, i’d gladly meet you where ever that some where may be. if we didn’t get along or just didn’t like talking much, it seems like we could happily listen to music together. no fish, though. no fish.

  2. June 20, 2011 7:55 pm

    no fish? I dunno, could be a dealbreaker. How about we find an Ice Land sign and meet a few blocks up from it? Or better yet we could start with the Future. Our whole lives could be better, starting right then.

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