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  • 4/30/11 02:02
    "I'm gonna sleep like a baby king," she said, as she exited the building. "Thank you for a wonderful evening." Then she took to the streets, with the beautiful black boy she wouldn't dare look at. "…And for the spliff!" Naturally. A wry and charming smile painting her face. She chances a glimpse of the ground beneath her feet. Abrupt and hard and clear. Like a looking glass, all magnified - in an instant. For a moment, she is transported to a childhood where she looked for the things in the earth; the life within the dirt. It's pulsing chock-full with creation this very minute- it never stops. But things like that are very easy to forget, when walking with a beautiful boy. When the streets are gray. And the air is wet. And life outside carries on all around you, carousing, ringing in another Saturday night. Pregnant with possibility. Human beings, strangers searching for a connection - that, or looking for the utter opposite: complete disassociation. Temporary annihilation. Do we ever really touch each other? The funny thing is, we go about it with the same approach. Drink of the very same gourd, the very same poison. In a lukewarm effort to survive. Simultaneously grasping, fishing for that fabled lifespark and squelching, drowning the fledgling flame within ourselves.
    We are at an impasse with our own humanity. Stranded between hope and despair. The plight of our generation, shielding ourselves in costumes of contrived apathy. Woven out of fear - fear of the illusion. We don't wanna get caught with our trousers down, in full-on reckless abandonment to our innate enthusiasm for life and this world. We'd rather live half-baked in fear, and be tepid and casual in our desires, than risk the chance of seeming foolish, or worse, getting heart-broken, just at the sight of a beautiful sunset. So we live our lives with just the "v." A subtle drone to obscure the rhythm of our heart beats. Like the thick, black caking of bitter asphalt that we spread over the earth, that muffles the pulse of life that pumps beneath our feet.

    A rumble in her chest. Something breaks free. Things begin to surface.

    So with her head sufficiently muddled (for a day that seemed to encapsulate a million little lifetimes) she takes to the streets - her legs sore and heavy, aching from a good day's work. In this one day, she lived many different lives - each her own, but with every one, a glimpse of another direction. Offering small chances she didn't take.
    And this walk home is no different. A chance hovers in between the time it takes to get from point A to point B. A flicker. Only a flicker. Will she see it?

    She walks on. The beautiful boy walks beside her. A collage of feet-on-pavement, and shoulders, and knees. A Picasso of striding body parts without a face, all angles and elbows, because she's too scared to look. She's all glances and disjointed still-frames. Indirect. Because somewhere she knows, that looking comes with a price: you risk being seen yourself. And you can't take that back.

    The grass turns to concrete and the footsteps fade away. And off she plods down the crackling street alone, in company, under orange lamplight that lights the way towards home. To a bed, heaped and ready to receive the heavy weight of a head full of thoughts not-quite-ripe. For now, she will sleep on them. And dream away another night. Body heavy and stomach empty - but heart full, and skin that tingles from the touch of a flame. A flicker, but just enough to remind her. A single drop of water to heal the hairline cracks in the clay. She softens, and melts into her bed. The immediate need for sleep, now outweighing all other thoughts, takes hold of her. And as she drifts out of consciousness, her skin exhales and begins to drink in the gifts of yet another day. She closes her eyes.
    The little flame dances within her.
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