A hand emerged from the darkness, silhouetted by the faint glow of an orange lantern held by another. The lantern swayed, bathing the rest of the body with light. No detail could be seen, just a black outline of hands, arms, and legs. It was the only thing he could see as well, the orb pulsing from his black grasp.
Raising the light in front of him he began to walk, to search. An unknown force was pulling him forward. His heart trembled with hesitation, but in his obedience he followed. The light could reach just in front of him, guiding only his next step on the flat black surface. Beyond his stride, his single, dim light, muddled into the everlasting blackness. He was alone.
He continued to walk, in lines, in circles, the direction was not clear. Each step began with hope, but ended in defeat. The once intimate shelter of black walls was stripped away, leaving him uncomfortably exposed. There was nothing left to do but scream, to shout out in frustration, his voice killed by the immensity of his present universe. No echoes lived here. The silence was deafening, and his nakedness became more apparent than ever.
His pace quickened as he searched, hesitant steps turning into belligerent strides. He was in frenzy, boldly diving head first into the world that surrounded him. He was more terrified of the isolation than what lay dormant in the abyss.
His energy seemed to cause the lantern to shine brighter, stretching just ever so much further. Drawing a path. A path that was immediately erased by the nothing that followed patiently behind him. He continued to roar as he ran, the lantern swinging at his side like a pendulum, desperately listening for a response, for anything to reply. He could no longer stand still, he had begun his journey and the thought of stopping did not exist in his mind, no time to contemplate, occupied by the search. He was afraid that the slightest blink would drape a curtain over whatever it was that existed out there, what he was looking for, it could have been anything really.
He failed to realize that the more impatient he grew, and the more ground he covered, came at a cost. The fuel in his lantern was burning up.
The swishing of liquid could scarcely be heard below the un-refuted screams, his own actions disguising the deterioration of life taking place right before his eyes, his burning eyes.
Dripping salt tears and sweat, but he dare not blink. He clenched his teeth, his screams reduced to grunts as he fought the pain. He could not let his world go black but for the split second of relief, for the fear that it might forever stay that way. Devoted he was reduced to breathing heavily through his nose, knives piercing through his sockets. The strain was too much...
He yelled one last time, louder than all screams before.
The world was once again silent, absent of his screams; he continued to blink. Every time the light in his hand would reappear right where he expected. Relief. The knives had been yanked free. But just as he started to walk again, the faintest hint of doubt popped into his head. The doubt that he may have missed something, something that might have flown past, in the time his eyes were shaded. That doubt grew in his mind, fostering on the weakness his every thought. Like a plague it spread, every step was becoming a chess match. Every movement limited by the path set forth by the footstep preceding it. Unable to undo what had already been done.
The unending black had once again become a blanket. His mind had shrunk the very boundaries of the world around him. Taking the lantern he stared deeply into its flame, pleading for comfort from its soothing motions. Lulled into its trance, unaware that he glided ever so slightly around and around.
The world he held in his hand had become enough for him, he had accepted his fate.
He was content to spectate for the remainder of his time. The lamp was there from the start, and it would be with him to the finish. He was its caretaker, protector of the life that operated within its confined glass walls. Meanwhile he was gliding obliviously through the real world around him...
There was a clink.
The lantern jumped in his hand and in a split moment he was snapped out of his trance, back into consciousness, back to the black reality. He had hit something, squinting he drew the lantern forward again... clink.
Hesitantly he pulled the lantern closer, and out of the dark it was born. His eyes widening at the site of it, he blinked and blinked, his breath growing heavy. A site ever so familiar yet so unexpected, for what lay before him was an arm, connected to a hand, a hand frozen in time, grasping into the unreachable distance.
What was it grasping for he asked himself. He traced the arm to its root, only to find a body much like his own attached to it. Bringing the lantern close to the body’s face it was apparent it was looking towards something. Following the body’s frozen gaze he peered into the invisible distance. Could he have seen what it was he was looking for all along?
He began to take steps in the direction the statue was looking, but every step he took tore him farther away from the only thing he had ever found. He turned back and found the arm again. Its presence bringing him comfort, stability.
Again he examined the body, and attempted to move its limbs, but it was not meant to move, nor would it ever.
He peered deeply into the black, empty face, sure that it was occupied. He shouted at it, hit it, and pleaded to it... there was no response. Whatever life there once was, it was gone now.
He followed the arm outward again, now motivated with a sense of direction, a sense of purpose to find what was out there, whatever it was that this statue so blatantly appeared to see. His path was narrowed to a line, straight in front of him, foot in front of foot.
In what seemed like no time at all he came upon another body, this one too frozen, but the body was crawling. Its state more despairing, the legs frozen into the ground, the body half absorbed into the flat plane floor this universe lay on, it’s hand too grasping in motionless anguish.
He followed it to another, and another, and another. Discovering that this initially thought to be wasteland was actually full. The universe bursting with statues, of frozen beings that resembled his reflection.
He walked away from the frozen body at his side, back into the nothing to which had become accustomed to. Sheltered by the vastness, he dropped to his knees.
There was nothing left, nothing for him to hope for, everything he had been through, every single moment that had driven him forward had brought him nowhere. Every beat of his heart that came and went, every thought from his mind, every movement he made, meant nothing in this moment. He felt betrayed, promised significance but left with dejection. His being was tortured and he was filled with spite. He cursed at his creation.
He took the only thing he could, and in one rushed moment blurred by frustration and absent of thought, destroyed the only thing he ever knew. The fuel that remained inside the lantern drifted upward as it was swung infuriatingly toward its demise. Before the lamp had even hit the ground, his soul was chockfull with regret. A pit grew deep within well before the explosion of glass shards and fire engulfed the darkness around him. Dropping to his knees his hands grasped in a dying frenzy at everything around him, the scorching debris digging its way through his skin, ripping him open. His hands wet with the life now gushing from his fingertips.
He could feel the cold sliding towards him as the pebble-sized fires around him began to fade. He had self destructed and wanted nothing more than to rewind time but a few seconds, to use the last bit of light that remained but to search a little while longer.
One plate of glass held on it a fraction of light as the last droplets of fluid bubbled from the heat. He held it gently in his hand, heavy black droplets splattering as they fell, staring. Staring directly into the dying beacon. His eyes burned from the overwhelming brightness. Bringing his face closer and closer as it continued to fade.
It was gone.
The weight of his limbs became insurmountable as he collapsed in defeat. He did not cry for he was not sad, rather he was numb. Expressionless and exhausted he lay with his eyes closed, absorbed into the abyss...
He drew in a ceaseless breath that he was sure to be his last, opening his eyes as he exhaled.
Before him lay an unimaginable amount of stars. A billion billion specks of light twinkled ever so slightly in the distance. The abyss was not empty, but bursting with life. Lanterns. Some were shining brighter than others, drifting through the endless night. A thousand new stars created from the collision of a thousand others.
Staring into infinity.
Staring at an existence that was made invisible by the shadow cast from the very light in his hand. Cloaked by his only guide.
His eyes could not focus on a single dot; their numbers were too vast. Every time he tried to narrow one down another caught his attention. He was mesmerized.
He lifted himself slowly from the ground, the lights spinning ever so slightly as the blood inside of him sparked its way from his head back into his body. A different path was ahead of him. A path that was tangible. Real.
Filled with electricity he began to walk, each step taking a lifetime’s worth of strength. He ran, and kept running. An endless amount of time passed as he ran, more time than he had ever known. His pace slowing as each eon succeeded to the next, until he was left, motionless in space, his right hand grasping out in front of him, reaching for the unattainable that lay just out of his grasp, mocking him.
He had forever faded into the void.
Lost in the black sky.
A prisoner in the frozen cell his body had become.
Forced to witness eternity pass on without him.
I hit record
with nothing to say
just to see what would happen
i have an intense need to complete tasks
so that's something
April 19, 2014 Prompt: Body
May this offering speak for everyBody.
is my temple,
sacred vessel bearing forth
the deep-set seeds of my
Uncharted waters flow
and flower the Muses with the powers of
Intellect, Mysticism & an
for color, contour & continuum.
make my bed one of…
Lilies of the Valley
providing the fodder of
for a new shoot
Many tiny bells
with their inkling
curve rhythmically round,
of fecundity in numbers.
I keep well-fed, this
in my head, my hands
It was too noisy here
Alone with my mind
I should have tried harder
To make friends
They are much easier to ignore
I am afraid of the light, yup that’s right. The light in the dark. The shadows that move in the darkness created by the light. The light that moves in just the right way to scare the shit out of me.
Why else would I hide under my blanket? You know, in the complete dark?
Whispers from the ethers,
Wash over faint memories,
Of a life,
Under scabs of the past.
The wounds won't heal,
Because the thoughts keep oozing,
Through the denial of events,
The soul can never forget.
Lack of self-awareness,
Keeps the cycle repeating,
Not knowing why it hurts,
Just to be alive.
The trend is to look outward,
A mistake many make.
But collecting people and things,
Won't provide what it takes,
To get to the bottom of this incessant ache.
The answers have always been inside,
Waiting to imerge and make things right.
All it takes is listening to the voice,
That speaks in silent intuition,
To navigate this course.
The wisdom has been there,
Waiting for the truth,
That will open the floodgates,
Of enlightened faith
And turns on the light,
That illuminates your insight.
The past is then seen,
For what it is,
A time, long past,
Survived at last.
There is a voice in my head
That reminds me constantly
I haven't produced anything
Artistically and intelligently
Quite so brilliant as the others
That there is still time
If only every waking moment
Is put to the task.
That voice is interrupted
By my child's voice and hands
Tugging at my clothes.
Some days I laugh at this contrast,
Come home to myself
And consider the matter settled,
That voice put to rest,
Right or wrong it's not important.
Other days I must be a fool.
Because only a fool
Would consider this
A difficult dilemma.
[Poem Every Day - Day 19 - April 19, 2014]