There isn’t anything in here that was written when it was forced. There is too much to tell and not enough time to do it. If I slow down to try and arrange things or look back or make it make sense, I’ll get so far behind that you’ll never get the whole story. That just wouldn’t do.
There isn’t any trick to it. It’s all the same, but there also isn’t any point in trying to make it coherent or entertaining. It’s not one story where the characters always have the same names and live continuous lives and try to overcome adversities. Reality just doesn’t work that way. The sooner you abandon your need for that, the sooner we can really get somewhere. Like here.
I’m standing on what used to be a street corner. To me, three days ago it was a bustling strip in a small mountain town. This was a ski resort on the verge of the 2016-17 season. I had a job. Selling ice cream. There were pretty girls everywhere. I was looking into re-establishing myself as a productive member of society, someone who could be relied upon. Someone with friends. Someone who worked for the weekend and watched the local bands crank out cover tunes of popular 90s jams.
I think that I would have been okay with this.
It didn’t even last a month. Everything gets decimated and I can’t quite figure out if it’s my fault or if it’s what I want or if it’s just my fate. I hadn’t even thought about the girl, or doors, or the blasphemous versions of me that still needed to be taken care of in a long time. Too long, I guess, because, now, here I am.
The corner is cold and the light is grey. I can tell I’m somewhere that is not well. Fallout is a word that comes to mind. Lifeless is another.
There isn’t anyone here. No pretty girls. No ex-wives or made up heroines. I just woke up here and it’s a place where no one exists anymore. The buildings around me are crumbling and if there is life in the woods, I can’t detect it.
A bomb must have gone off. I wonder if the air is breathable. I suppose that if I don’t travel out of here soon, I’ll find out.
I hate when these ones happen. Where I end up in a world where there is nothing to explore, nothing to be grateful for, no one to talk to. This world must have had a war. There must have been some pretty great destruction for this place to get touched. It is isolated. Up in the mountains. The signs for the little string of towns along I-70 all state the town’s elevation rather than its population. The height is more impressive. There is no one here and I don’t suppose there is anything good that I can do. I start to concentrate on opening my eyes somewhere else, but there is a small tug on my shirt before I leave.
I open my eyes and I am still here. Now there is a girl.
She is not a muse or a savior or a protectee. She is someone new.
She is small, like a child, but ageless. Her blue eyes shine through our grey surroundings. They stare up at me hopefully. I do not turn away even though I am afraid.
She looks like she has been crying, but she also has an air of encouragement. I can’t tell, but I think that even here, even in despair, she might be God.
“This one’s pretty desolate,” I tell her.
She smiles a big, toothy grin, “Beautiful though. Isn’t it?”
I take another look and the burnt trees against the hazy background of the snow (or ash) covered mountains is rather breathtaking.
“I suppose it is, when I look at it from your point of view,” I bashfully state, “One of yours?”
“They’re all mine,” she says, still smiling, “but they’re yours too. You should try to look at it from my point of view more often. Like, all the time.”
She giggles after this and starts to skip away.
“Hey,” I call after. She pauses but does not turn back towards me. Her blue eyes are looking ahead. “Thank you for helping me.”
I say this last part almost to myself and then I am alone again.
I am in a library. I am alone, but not really.