Sunlight streaming through my window slowly lifted me back to consciousness. I felt my dream slip away, and as I opened my eyes, felt it be replaced by a beautiful view in front of me. The sun barely crested over the horizon, casting amber and gold rays over a(more) beautiful pale ocean. The open window let a cool ocean breeze kiss my face. I yawned. Hugged my pillow. yawned again, and stretched my arms high in the air. Content, I rolled out of bed and put on a shirt. Walking downstairs, I was greeted by a fresh pot of coffee on the marble counter, and a crumpled brown paper bag on the brown table. Chocolate Croissants, fresh from the bakery. I grabbed one of the delicious golden brown pastries, and a steaming pot of coffee, and walked out towards the porch. I opened the door, and stepped outside.
The coffee fell from my hand as I plunged through the open air. Falling. Choking on the once delicious croissant. The house was nowhere to be found, the only thing below me was a deep blue sea. Dark. Unforgiving. I screamed with terror. The sun was no longer out, it was night. I fell, and fell. The cold ocean rushed up to meet me and-
I gasped and sat up in bed, cracking my skull into the ceiling. "GODDAMNIT" I yelled. I rolled out of bed and crashed 6 feet down onto the floor, waking my roommate up below me. No ocean breeze, no sunlight, and certainly no shimmering sea. "Today" I thought, "is going to blow."(less)
In better days, grandad used to say, a boy like you didn't have to go to school with the likes of them. I knew who he meant. Another time he told me he didn't even see a black person in the flesh until he went to college in Minneapolis. He had laughed(more) out loud at the man, who was innocently waiting for a bus, and didn't stop until he had left the man far behind in his rear view mirror. I almost turned back around, he said, so I could start laughing again, that fellah looked so ridiculous to me. The story made me laugh a little, too, with the image of my grandad hawing into his shirt sleeves at the helpless object of his corn pone amusement.
Nowadays, he might continue, a boy like you has to put up with such horseshit and foolishness... It's not a white man's world anymore. You turn on the teevee , and it's all programmed for women and homosexuals. Can't even watch the network news and get a white, male anchorman who isn't a pole puffer, God-bless-David -Brinkley.
Then he'd take a deep sip from an opaque plastic cup filled with tap water and bourbon and stare off somewhere over my shoulder. (less)
The average age of the House of Representatives in the United States is, according to Google, 57. The average age of the Senate hobbles just a bit higher at 61. To most people, this seems like a pretty useless statistic. "Yes, our nation is run by a bunch of(more) old people! What else is new?" Average Andy might say. Normal Ned would agree, and chip in a quip about how "that's how it's always been". Both would agree, "So what?"
"So What?!" Intellectual Irene would respond. "So what is that these people don't give a fuck about what the world will be like in 20 years! They'll either be dead or filthy rich enough from the bribes they're taking to live happily ever after until they're six feet under!"
See, Intellectual Irene has a great point. If I, a poor adolescent, was offered money to lie that climate change wasn't real I would tell the bribester to go to hell. If big oil offered me a big buck to vote for legalizing that big oil rig outside Alaska I would politely tell them to shove that oil rig up their
Well you get the point. The people that are taking bribes in government are selling away our future planet, the planet that our kids will inherit, and our grandkids. They're fucking it up for everyone and we should be furious. The big so what is that they don't have to live on whatever scorched Earth they pass down to us. When they die and get put in their diamond-studded casket that was paid for with oil money, their inheritance to us will be one big, lousy, disgusting planet. Instead of selling someone else's future, we should invest in it. (less)
Struggling for freedom through a maze of animate razor-toothed vines and little red poppies that screamed hideously and burst into flames when stepped on wasn’t exactly what Miren had in mind when she’d sighed at her desk on Friday and said she was ready for something new.
She’(more)d meant “a serendipitous encounter with a handsome stranger” new, or “a weekend away” new, or even--for the love of God--“a call back after an interview” new.
Yet here she was with a machete in her hand, a thrill in her heart, and one goal in her mind: save Princess. That winsome little kitty had metamorphosed from "Saturday night Netflix binge watch snuggle buddy" to "heroine's motivation in a fucked up fairy tale" in the space of one catnapping.
Miren wondered if anyone was going to believe that she had cut her hair so short because murderous vines had snaked around it while she rested and started to pull her backwards by her scalp. Or that her black eye came from walking into a thick tree branch that--no shit--materialized from thin air while she was rushing toward what looked like an exit. Or that fairies were real. Or that fairies were thoroughly chaotic assholes.
So what? Miren's blood hummed with purpose for the first time in years. Her face hurt. Her hands were beginning to blister from hacking with the machete. She was acutely aware of everything that moved around her. She felt like badass.
So she might get written up if she was stuck here past Monday. So she might miss a car payment because she forgot to automate them last month. So her leftovers would get moldy and her voicemails would go unanswered another day.
She had a Princess to save, and that was that. (less)
So what? Go do what you want. You're going to die. You are already dead, for many intents and purposes: powerless, unable to move freely over the earth, inhibited by lack of money, lack of time, in a deep sleep state as sound and colour passes over you. Absorbed(more) by the go-go-go, putting band-aids on the people who serve food, manicures & court papers to the people who repair pipes, cars, and marriages, and this is how the world goes round. We all need each other but never want one another, until it comes up where two people want each other very much, maybe, to their own detriment. Or sometimes two people want to kill each other. Or make a dollar off someone. Food turns into shit and love is only an escape before it turns black. You might as well already be dead, really...picture yourself as a skeleton underground, grass growing on top you, the sun has forgotten your shadow and sky doesn't remember your name. So go do it. So what?
This is how our reasoning goes when we want to get what we want. When we know it is bad. The devil comes out. The devil is rot and reasoning that spins off into nothing, breaking down scruples into colloids...pushing the stars away.(less)
All you want is happiness. Just happiness. Well let me tell you what happiness really is. Happiness is a word foremost, used to describe a psychological state wherein certain chemicals in the brain are present in proportions the experiencer finds pleasurable. Such a (more)mixture is naturally unstable and fleeting. You do things you think will re-establish this feeling. You make plans, you meet new people, you seek new experiences and positive outcomes.
Some people, when chronically deprived of this feeling, will take medicine to approximate happiness. Sometimes the medicine kills them, sometimes it makes them reassess their definitions of pleasure or sadness.
Can animals be happy? No. They can be content, excited, angry, alert, fearful, but not happy. Happiness, like sadness, requires an understanding of time passing and an ability to project into the future that only humans possess.
If you can't have happiness, you will settle for relief from pain. Analgesia shuts down awareness by degrees. This is objectively good. If you had full awareness of pain, you would die from the intensity of it all, as if pulled apart by a black hole or exploded into a shape the size of the sun. The experience of pain comes from without. The experience of happiness bursts from within. Can you be happy and in pain simultaneously? No. Can you feel nothing? No. You have to feel something. But it might not be happiness. In fact, I'd be be very surprised if it were.(less)
There's something new about the old house, Maura muses as she walks through the rickety front foyer whose walls are stained and molded and where the air is stale and heavy. Her bones creak with the floorboards as she makes her way up the staircase.
(more) She visited the decrepit building every Sunday while the village was silent in prayer. She trailed her fingers along peeling paint and wallpaper, walking through each room.
She knew every inch of the old house by heart, could draw a blueprint from memory and could make a timeline of every event in her life that intersected with the history of the house. Knew the first floor from when she was young and too scared to travel far from the reaches of sunlight through the dusty, boarded up windows. She learned the second floor when she was a teenager, rebellious and proud enough to be fearless as she walked through the dark hallways and unlit rooms. And as she grew, slowly learning the harsh cruelty of the world, she also learned the shadowy secrets the house held. There was blood on the bottom step leading to the cellar and bones in a closet, eerie whispers from fireplaces, and portraits hung askew whose eyes followed you.
But this time, there was something new. The dust had moved and was slowly resettling as she walked, and she felt the disturbance before she found it. (less)
aint that all i want. aint that all anyone wants. when you cut things and persons down to the bone, want and need blur. and when you cut deep inside you realize that theres really nothing to it. people are simple. yet infinity layered. i like to think of(more) people this way. cut them down to size and all thats left is a mirror. but leave them be and sometimes, just sometimes you'd get lost in another. ain't that all anyone wants.(less)
Ah, a fresh day. Birds in the sky, dogs in the grass, bugs in my closet.
This closet needs cleaned. People like me have clean closets. Neat, professional, punctional people. Punctional? On time, whatever the word is. That's what I am. That's what we are.
Too many(more) clothes. Green, and red, and blue, and blue and blue. Baby blue, navy blue, royal blue. I can tell the difference. Details. So important to people like me.
Settle for periwinkle and forest green. Bold, that's how people like me dress. Noticeable. Fashionly. I should be a fashion designer. No, not today. Today I'm in a hurry.
Shoes, shoes. Pink, I think, leather and all stitched with red. Thin laces dig into my fingers, but I gotta pull them tight. People like me wear tight shoes. Gotta keep our feet in good shape for walking. Protect them.
Glass snaps under my pink shoe from the picture frame I broke last night. Some old person, a real loser. People like me don't like losers, dirty old losers. People like me are punctional and bold, like fashion designers.
I'm a fashion designer, by the way. I work with a lot of really big names. You'd recognize them, probably. And I'd love to introduce you sometime. But not today. Today I'm in a hurry.
Hat, hat. Something bold, something punctional. Like an old movie star's hat. Very sharp. If I had a deck of cards, I'd put the nine of hearts in the brim.
Looks good in the mirror. Like a movie star. I'm a movie star too. I've worked with a lot of big names. You'd know them. Not today, though. Today I'm too busy for movie stars.
Phone's ringing. My old friend is calling me. I don't answer. People like me don't answer phones.(less)
When my dreams and nightmares finally spit me out, gasping and stranded on the shores of a new day, my heart won't constrict when reality hits like the bright light of the sun. I will open my eyes and they will be dry(more). My limbs won't feel heavy and useless, my tongue won't be sandpaper dry and rough in a mouth that echoes with words unsaid.
Today, I will wake up different. I will use the night as my cocoon, and the moon's cold glow will clean the wounds while the pinprick stars stitch me up. The heavy balm of silence will hold me together until all my cracks are sealed and all my wounds are healed.
Today I will be better, I tell myself every day as the clock pushes its hands past midnight and I lie motionless and unable to sleep on my bed. Today will be the day when I'm okay, when I can breathe without drowning.
But the morning is no less cold than the night.
Tomorrow. I say, but the lie tastes bitter on my tongue and I hate myself for it. I hate my weakness.
Spite and swirling frustration lends me enough strength to push myself up and my hands fist around the sheets, as if keeping my fingers and palm tightly furled around each other will keep me in one piece. I feel the fracture lines, the points of weakness and when a crumbling corner of my heart finally breaks, it echoes through my empty body and I shiver.
I don't know if I will ever wake up and not wish I was still asleep, if one day the world will be different and I won't be so ruined. (less)
her clothes might look beautiful (so beautiful that people sneer at her for being a "rich snob" and a "stuck-up stock broker") but i'm sure the silk pajamas and the pillows we got her aren't used half as much. her face always(more) wears the brightest, sweetest smile, but i honestly really worry how much makeup she's used to hide the dark circles under her eyes. or how many tear-soaked handkerchiefs are waiting in her laundry pile. or how many cracks run along the lining in her heart
dad, too, always stayed up to keep things in order, to leave us notes, to write letters for his children to open after a few years. sometimes he'd run fevers but remain a night owl anyway. mom says that he had dark circles under his eyes too. i wonder if he still has them. standing on the clouds in some other dimension, glowing brighter than the brightest stars in the universe, but still blinking back tears of worry
i wouldn't mind growing eyebags or running a fever myself if it meant finally seeing them catch some quality sleep(less)
You take another drag of your cigarette as an excuse to lean away.
Your fingers clench inside the pockets of your hoodie.
You exhale. Smoke twirls up into the air obscuring the stars momentarily. You should go inside, send hi(more)m home, disappear upstairs. It's the right thing to do. Sometimes you don't want to do the right thing.
"Are you staying?"
He raises an eyebrow and chuckles, "I'll be fine walking home,"
You laugh, "I know, it's getting late though."
You should let him just leave, this isn't a good idea, and you're supposed to be perfect. Behave, get good grades, join clubs, have friends, and definitely not kiss your uncles work partner.
But you do, light at first, you think he's going to pull away but he doesn't. Your back connects with the wall as he kisses you back. This is a terrible idea.(less)