I was born on a stormy Monday when the skies were green and the wind was tainted with grief. I was born to a woman with red arms. Her body was cold and her hands were frail, and she brought me into a world that was akin to a dying star. The sun had chosen to shed its flare, and a crowd had gathered to witness my descent. The night was young, and entropy reigned supreme around us.
The ground didn’t tremble on the day I was born; only houses of worship were lit on fire. There were no stars in the sky to guide the pious men, and women, to my mother’s house. I was born in a brothel that was painted red. It had no roof; and the heavens, the clergy, and the world and his wives sang requiems for my mother and her family. I was born to a whore who fornicated with spiders, and fat old men who dressed like circus wrestlers. My mother was to give birth to a generation that would destroy the hierarchy and free her, and her family, from a circle of debt that had been passed on to them. Life, the surreal transition you experienced as you tried to fade away into oblivion, eroded from your veins the moment my mother chose to dwell among her apparitions, along with my debt to her . We promised her paradise my love, and she died drowning in eternal sorrow. What does this act of treachery to the human soul make us, by default? Decadent dreams, an uncertain future, myriads of doubts, and grim promises were all that we inherited. I have robbed my family of their dreams, and we have raped their desires. I am a bastard, and we are murderers.

Do you understand the nature of your surroundings? Can you tell me why you chose to stay? These flooded hallways weren’t always painted red, and the sounds you fear and the things you see are not ominous either. These are neither projections of a confused mind nor are they grandeur delusions of maestros who have choked on pills; you have been a resident of this colony; among us, for your entire life. Don’t you remember? You and I were born from the same womb, and we are accountable for the world around us; a world sprung out of our desire to be whole again. I have borne witness to your acts, and I have stood by you in every step forward you’ve taken; even when your desires crippled you, and even when you painted the brothels red as they burnt. Are you not sated? We have finally stepped beyond the cardinal norms set for the abused and melancholic residents of this teeming colony of insects and carrion. Were you not prepared for this? Don’t you hear the troop of echoes paving the way to your destination?

Don’t be afraid, my love. Hold my hand and walk with me; ride along these tides and step into the fog that pervades this place. These hallways aren’t flooded with my tears, those belong to my mother, and these walls aren’t carved from your dreams. She wept for us; and her plangent cries for help failed to break the sound of the storm, on the day I was born. Do you still think it was the thought of death that brought us together? Why can’t you see, the spiders blinding you with their distortions like my mother did? She had agreed to be inflicted by flames and torture, and to be raped by fat old men; is she here, or does she wait at where all this carnage began? We promised her paradise, and we left her for the spiders and the butchers. What does this act of treachery to the human soul, make us by default? Do you still believe that I am another session in your waking state of life; or do you still believe that we are characters in your own writing? Hold my throat and slit my wrists; let my blood clothe you, and let it drown you with your beliefs. Let the trail of death I left behind end with my waking state of life. Can you finally see the shining stars and burning trees, like I do?

Ask yourself ; have you ever been to the end of this world? Have you ever seen the dark side of the sun? Embrace this brief moment that preludes your frantic rush to escape this prism; embrace its drunken ecstasy and the mute protest in your bones, and watch the monoliths you built crumble down. Can’t you see, its walls weeping, like I do?
Do my words misguide you? Why is it that you ignore the singularity that lurks behind my questions? It is concise, and it is always in complete harmony with the nature of your surroundings. Do you still not believe I am the ignominious truth that you have failed to accept?

Burn your doubts and cleanse yourself in my blood,and ask yourself; what if, what I write here, would be you? Would you still hope to find an answer in this page or even at the end of this hallway? No matter what you learn or what you see, you will always be blind; and all you can do is sit beside the burning trees.


The Life, death and Birth of Richard James

The Life, death and Birth of Richard James

The Life, death and Birth of Richard James

I couldn’t recall a previous time I came across a face, a normal face, or even an inane excuse resembling a form of life. I have tried to remember ; I have tried to pin the coins and debts of my life but I don’t ever remember a time where I have erased and crept out of the void that has been in me for as long as I could remember . I don’t know what it feels like to be satisfied , to be content with a life one takes for granted and I believe it is only a mere myth . The emptiness that resides in me is a void pit, and it has begun to suck in all the knowledge and worlds accumulated in me. I have traveled the plains and ruled the heavens of this world, I have been a martyr to carnal and spiritual urges, and here I remain, bound within these serene walls and the morbid sound of chains rattling, abortive to a quest of enlightenment the decadent human race has spent decades and a fortune on. I am not a dilapidated monolith who is ready to bow when kingdom comes, I am just tired.

I have no memories of my origin, my birth or my life; I have visions and I exist in them. This is how I have been and I have acquiesced it. I have visions of a time when blood flowed through my veins and when I made love to mother nature. I have sung hymns to the night and devoured my followers, I have skirted through the oceans and drifted into the green sky and beyond, and yet I don’t remember being sated.These visions of mine were pleasant, but at times, I remain haunted by them.

My visions showed me what it felt like when the ocean waves brushed along my ankle; it showed me how it felt like to walk among the lives of this realm with no ground under my feet. A momentary lapse of time eluded me and my train of thoughts, and after a brief spell of lifelessness  I came back to life; I was certain these visions weren’t meant for me.What was I if not human? I could smell the ocean and taste the ambiguity that engulfed the green sky but I was certain these visions weren’t meant for me. It tantalized me to know that somewhere between the ocean and the debris of my life laid a large imposing structure, and on the peak of it laid a man, vicariously living a lie he deemed comfortable, yet, in the midst this turmoil, this ambivalence comforted me. These visions and the man at the crown of my doubts reminded me what it felt like to be a part of this world’s future; it reminded me that I was a conscious being capable enough to crack the facade of a hollow existence that defined me and the man who knelt before me.
The room was dim and the man hadn’t stood up yet. He had long, brown hair and a coarse beard that stretched all the way down to his chest . A familiar stench of pain and filth consumed this room and the entire dungeon we were in, and this man had been feeding off it for what seemed like his entire life. It wasn’t a lamentable thought to consider this man and his race as leeches or parasites; I have always adored their will to survive. The dungeon understood me; and even in the midst of the stench and the mechanical moans of the outside world, it was able to ease my time here, with this man, by reminding me that there were no chains binding me to this room. The man knew he was not alone in this room yet he chose not to withdraw his stance. His hands were folded and his chin nuzzled to his breast, like how one makes an effort to escape the vile wind of the outside world. This man reminded me of a writer who had visited me in one of my visions. He was an elderly man who offered me his soul in return for the ability to write a book which would make his wife fall in love with him again. Unlike the writer, this man who knelt before me was not consumed by an impotent desire for warmth and he adhered his faith, and fate, close to his heart. He has lived his whole life in this prison cell, chained to the ground on which he was meant to flourish and resurrect, and lead his people to Absalom. He has lived his whole life waiting for the day when his father would step down from the edifices and monoliths, built to savor the lingering taste of benevolence, and free him and his race from the realm of insects and butchers. How long, I wondered, was he capable of living this lie he deemed comfortable?

Every being has fallen prey to temptation and every being has lied down in bed with faith. This is evident from the most basic instinct man has portrayed since he was created, the need to survive. The men of this world have lived every day in hopes of a better next day; never satisfied with their lives at hand they are constantly tempted to swindle their neighbors to feel more secure. Human beings have passed down the notion throughout generations that faith was what kept them alive. The children have been molded to believe temptations were the works of a weak mind; the word itself was odious to them. The men were taught to hope and have faith in times of dire need; and the men who tempted them to believe this achieved solace by bringing down their own demise. The men carved from temptation feed on the faith of the remaining, get drunk on the wine of fornication with the whores of the world, and always leave a mark in history for future generations to ponder over. Temptation is a glorious, terrifying truth that bursts through our barriers if we have the vitality to rebel, lifting ourselves up into an exaltation we still refuse to understand.
Weakness and isolation were what actually bought the humans down on their knees to accept faith as their daily sacrament. They turned and bowed down to anything that offered them a mere hope of a better life. They have murdered and destroyed each other in the name of faith and yet nobody has ever stopped to scrutinize the succubus they accepted into their homes. It corrupted them and gave birth to a race which was lead to fear the all-embracing and definite truth behind their existence, which would always be death.
What was this world if not a fertile breeding ground of everything mediocre. Humans had the opportunity to become Gods but they chose to become civilizations instead. My perceptions of this world aren’t morbid or stale and even I could carve in stone that a state devoid of suffering could only be attained in death. The writer who had visited me gave up his legacy in return for unconditional love and the man who still knelt before me was coming to terms with this predicament. He was going to die in a matter of minutes and he still wouldn’t know why he was in chains since his birth. The man was trembling with fear and pain. The ambiguity had taken its toll and he finally broke down. He collapsed onto the floor and his breath was replaced with tears . He cried and cried, and his screams for help were overrun by the calls of execution from the outside world. A momentary lapse of time eluded me and my train of thoughts and after a brief spell of lifelessness I came back to life, and the illusion of a dungeon faded.

Church bells rang around us and flares were being lit. I could see in the distance a large mob that waited behind colossal metal bars. They shrieked and roared at the sight of us. The gaunt world and his wife cast abhorrent stares at the man as I carried him down his valley of death . He was nothing more than an abomination in their eyes, like a lonely ghost whose judgment would reveal a truth that nobody cared about. This marooned scrap of what was once a majestic civilization was familiar to me; I had been here before as a phantom who roamed around the pedestals of this little town . The man was a burden to me now and I decided not to show him any mercy. I laid him on the ground and dragged him by his hair. The mob applauded this, and the writer stepped out from the crowd and started lashing the man . The man was bleeding, and his blood-soaked the scorched earth; quenching its thirst only to make it want more . The man accepted this torture and showed no resistance against it. It was clear to me now that he had acquiesced his recluse life in hopes that it would grant his people solace and absolution; his faith in his father and his monoliths remained strong even as the writer dragged him to be hung in front of the mob that waited to feast on his flesh. He would be hung in a matter of minutes, and he would finally know that his faith was only but a torture to this world; a torture to believe in a tense devoid of all the horror and suffering I had to offer; and as the rope tightened around his neck I could see in his deep ambient stare that he realized that it was I who decided his fate, and it would always be death.

Where was his God now?

The Man who wasn’t there

The Man who wasn’t there

The Man who wasn’t there

It was snowing that morning. I remember waking up to the sound of the door being locked. There was snow all over the room and I could see flakes of them dribble down the nightstand. There were and strands of hair all over the floor. Martha hadn’t bothered to even close the window. A gentle breeze blew in and eased my grogginess a bit. A minute more I told myself, a minute more of sleep. My headaches were getting worse but it didn’t seem to matter anymore, I just needed a minute more of sleep.Martha had taken our kids to school. It had been a while since we had looked each other in the eye. I could remember staying up all night in hopes of talking to her but I couldn’t recall for how long my efforts seemed stale. Martha had grown restive every waking second we spent under the same roof. It had become certain that marrying me was more whimsical rather than a decision from Martha’s part. I remember  to this day what my wife had asked me the first night we met. She had asked me if I believed in signs. She seemed so sure that our meeting was something foretold. Her words were candid and she  spent the entire night with me, pleasing and making sure no seeds of doubt sprouted in my mind. Servility was a quintessential trait in her and that precisely was the reason she grew more and more restive as we spent each day together.

Martha had taken our kids to school. It had been a while since we had looked each other in the eye. I could remember staying up all night in hopes of talking to her but I couldn’t recall for how long my efforts seemed stale. Martha had grown restive every waking second we spent under the same roof. It had become certain that marrying me was more whimsical rather than a decision from Martha’s part. I remember  to this day what my wife had asked me the first night we met. She had asked me if I believed in signs. She seemed so sure that our meeting was something foretold. Her words were candid and she  spent the entire night with me, pleasing and making sure no seeds of doubt sprouted in my mind. Servility was a quintessential trait in her and that precisely was the reason she grew more and more restive as we spent each day together.
Every relationship is deemed to be stained at a point and only then would we realize that the concept of an ideal family  doesn’t exist, it required commitment which Martha could no longer tolerate. She was lost and I would always be a disease in her soul. We were forced to accept the weight of our silence and only redeem ourselves when one of us would finally slit their wrists and let their blood flow into the profound depths of our desires, and fill the ocean of a void we created in each other. This cycle of debt didn’t haunt me, somehow I knew it was inevitable and it was time Martha realized that as well.

A throbbing pain had spread around the back of my neck and passed around to the tip of my skull. It was 9am. I could hear the morning traffic cross through the street, a horde of families just like mine rushing towards their daily races. I remember having a job where I was supposed to wear a tie and punch in numbers in a computer. I used to be proud of it, I used to wear my tie straight and hold my chin up high each time I walked in there. I wasn’t sure but I think I worked for the government, the high chairs and mountain men punching in their testaments for their daily bread with nothing less than a placid face may have made it seem oblivious to the outside world, but it made me doubt for a second if we were indeed working for the men in the high castle after all.
I remember working for a fat old man dressed like a circus wrestler, a man who gobbled down sheets of paper and spat out chunks of money, a man who made every careworn face scrape the dead skin from under his belly, a man who had strings attached to his limbs and neck which grew tighter as each day had passed. There was a cardinal rule that had to be followed while we were working for him, never frown. Never frown even when under pain or torment, for a frowning face meant he had to scrape the dirt from under the old man’s toes. In time he had carved masks out of the dead skin and dirt and made us replace our ties, which I once proudly wore, for it. Nobody ever frowned after that, nobody ever quit.
The fat old man was also consumed by a desire, he longed to soar the skies and take the place of the men who weaved his strings. The rancorous old man began building a stairway leading to the men above with the money he had spat out. His greed was not followed by ambition; he only wanted to chew paper, he was bred for it and it was the only thing that satisfied his thirst. We suppressed our freedom to destroy and stared in awe at the nameless edifice the licentious old man put up, chunk by chunk with pride. Each time the old man fell down, he sank his methadone teeth back into the stairway and carried on till the day he vanished behind the smokes of our machines.
Nobody has ever seen him since. Nobody has descended his stairway of spit and paper to reclaim his throne of greed and gluttony. All we were left with was an amalgam of his carrion and filth, molded into a reason to remind us to always hold our chin up high and never frown.

“Even in the wake of extinction, we will always have men who drown in corruption and women who abandon their children in the search for equality .” It was right; our feuds for power over a world belonging to no one was an ambiguous riddle spawning  over the decades, always lacking a drive to end.

I didn’t have to turn my face around to comprehend the weight of its stare, it pierced the cold in the room and its sour breath rained down on me. The aura in my bedroom, where Martha and I had shared a lot of memories, turned stale and lifeless.
The ice kept melting but It had stopped dribbling down, the window still remained open but the gentle breeze had stopped flowing in. It didn’t matter, I didn’t feel groggy anymore, and somehow I was least daunted by the circumstance of the situation I was in. I remained calm and tilted my neck towards the right to remind myself of what I was dealing with here. It had no torso, no gender, only an amorphous figure showing an image of green skies and blue land. It had a face, a human face like we all did, normal and smiling. The green skies it held captive in itself was home to a vast number of stars. They seemed infinite and eternal. The blue land grew homes for the figures, just like the one staring at me, and they gathered around in multitudes and starred at the stars in awe and chanted hymns from the bible, and kept moving around in uneven pairs. These figures had held nothing captive inside them. Every figure in the multitude had a different shade of color enveloping them. They were so engrossed in chanting at the stars that they failed to notice that the colors enveloping them seemed to merge for a short period. The colors merged into a dark shade of purple and orange and returned back to what they were before in a short span. Time took its toll on me, and the day became night as I continued to fix my merciless scrutiny on it. Tantalized by the packaged freight of its captive’s lives, I rebelled from an idea that was still foreign to my make-up.

“The road less traveled doesn’t exist John. There are no directions. There is only a point in the center that helps you slip away, aimlessly.”

Have I been living with this being all this while or was it just another character in my own writing? I remember it wasn’t the first time I had asked myself these questions. It had never struck me before but maybe I was just like everybody else, a random spawn in this perfect world. There is no irony behind citing this world as perfect. Millions of children were starving and the news kept rambling on about how were invading Afghanistan, and all I could think about was how intricately knit the strings of desire were. My children didn’t starve because of the circus wrestler; Martha had left me because of the face I brought back home, the one which floats beside me, staring at me with eyes that shine with a cynical light.

“I had a dream that someday I would have a family of my own, a garden, a dog …”
My legs had turned numb and I felt a sharp pain behind my right eye. It was 7pm and it didn’t seem like it had stopped snowing. Martha hadn’t come back home. I looked around our house and saw no signs of my kids either. I wasn’t angry, somehow I knew everything was in its right place.
It traced my footsteps and followed me wherever I went. I sat down in the living room and caught my reflection on the TV screen. My face was covered with dirt and dead skin. I tried to rub it away but the dirt kept huddling up on my couch, leaving no trace of the person I could once relate to. I was living a life it deemed comfortable.

“I am eternal John; I am sorrow, I am everlasting peace.”

What once seemed so palpable disappeared behind the mist; my identity eroded as the fog cleared, along with my reflection.

“Why do you keep calling me John?” I asked it.

My own voice betrayed my emotion. I could finally recall its face at that moment. It reminded me of a writer my mother used to talk about, it reminded me of my son whose soccer practice I missed today, it reminded me of someone I could once relate to.

Martha had taken my kids and left, they were never coming back.