Wednesday, August 31, 2011


   It's supposed to be the end of all things. It's the mind-shredding fear of being out of my own control; the sensation of helplessness; the desperation of reaching out to steady myself and finding nothing but the smoky air clouding up my dreams. I usually fall facing upward, staring at the ridge where I once stood. Maybe there is somebody there, reaching out for me, calling for my return. Maybe there's an empty universe swirling in on itself, and I'm falling away from it. Maybe I should turn myself over and see if there's anybody below with arms outstretched, awaiting the soft impact of my arrival.
   That's not usually my luck.

   I once dreamed the sonofabitch shoved me so hard that I fell out of the car and off the side of the road. There was no drainage ditch. As it turns out, that ditch is just a mirage. If you care to walk up to it and press your hand firmly against the dirt and the sticks and the rocks, you'll find it ripples for a moment and then dissipates into a mighty nothingness. That's where I fell...into the nothingness.

   It's useless to scream. Nobody can hear me, but that doesn't keep me from doing it. I scream all the sound out and then I'm not falling anymore so much as floating, and now, it's not just me. There are Others. Some are like me, they float and look around in wonderment. Some are plummeting, screaming with abandon as they whoosh past me. There they go, and I stare after them hoping they'll discover the floating thing. The floating is so much more pleasant, but it's not really what I want to be doing. I'd rather be floating up. That's not what we're doing in the nothingness. There seems to be no upward movement.

    Hands grab at me and pull me downward. I'm afraid of this, but I quickly understand that this Other is not pulling me downward, but climbing over me.

   They are me.

   We are all me, and we see this simultaneously, and instantly know that we are the only way out of this. We clasp hands and use one another as purchase to climb back out of the drainage ditch. It is a great effort to climb over my own back and shove myself upward and cheer myself on. I can only think that some other me, somewhere below must have hit the bottom, and now we are all standing on the shoulders of the Me down there.

     We climb out of the nothingness, and he is still there waiting for our return. He grins and fantasizes that he'll be shoving us back into that void again, but we are ready for it this time.

    We have the feeling he'll scream all the way down.



  1. That was more than a little chilling. Yet I could not stop reading.

  2. Robbie, you always say the sweetest things.