I never thought that was the last true embrace, the final genuine grasp of innocence. But then, when the city flooded, everything changed. It had to accept the great stillness of dreams.
The waters rose. It was as if the tide was coming in and didn't want to stop. We left the park and ascended the flight of stairs to the apartment. It was the strangest of places, with a door almost 20 feet high and a crawl space for our safety. We would play with our constellation gun and gaze into another world through the pipes. It was here we first broke the promise and blended into one. But for now, with the waters rising, we loaded every provision we could think of onto your couch. We knew it was only a matter of a few hours, at most a day, and the waters would be at this level, too. It was always the plan that the couch would be our liferaft. However, we never understood that it would also become a haven, a home whereupon we could speak of everything. On that island, we let our sweat and tears of joy and sorrow magically erase all the ills from this life and our past lives. The world was being washed and cleansed, and so were the energies that no longer suited us.
We celebrated all this and sang in our tones and moans to express our gratitude.
hands in the sky
hands held up towards the stars.
we danced in blissful naivety
and rejoiced as the light pollution slowly winked out.
no cities or towns,
just silhouetted hands held up
shadows in front of the sea and moon - such endlessness.
Time moved on, and the waters that once thrilled us now threatened us. The oceans that once touched our toes made us giggle now created a rich primal fear.
Our raft, upon which we could speak of all things, was no longer an island of limitless freedom but began to show signs of leakage. We, too, started to show signs that neither one of us understood nor wanted to delve into and seek to understand. Our mutual language was faltering.
How would it be possible to consider not loving them?
How would it be possible for one to consider not loving them?
We are human. We are flawed, and the fear grew more significant than the love. It grew greater than wonder. The fear held us back. We stopped looking at the stars and no longer sought guidance from them. We didn't want to know which way was north or south or how our ancestors traveled. Their advice had emptied us and spoiled our hearts. We no longer pondered the depths of ourselves while gazing at them - the little burning orbs surrounded by nothingness now made our minds spin with more fear than wonder.
We left our life raft and swam ashore. We stood looking at the craft, this small shape barely visible. Then, it disappeared into the darkness. That chapter was closing, a period in which the flood was over. The earth below us felt strange.
I took off my shoes.
"Is this dry land?" I asked.
You didn't reply. You simply sat down and mimicked me. We sat together, letting our toes move in and out of the sand. We sat together without speaking, playing in the sand as kids do.
"Yes," you suddenly said, "this is dry land."
We warmed ourselves at your apartment, and that is when we fractured. That is when the rupture occurred. It was never the same. I hate the thought of you waiting there, of you wondering, thinking all the ideas, and feeling - all the feelings. At that fragile age, I break when I think of you with those:
Feelings of love and fear
yelling the tone - yelling it forever - even in silence.
Shouting it in a whisper, just enough so you could hear it, your secret word, your tone - the echo.
We never returned to the lakefront, to the water. We never found the stars in the blanket or the specs of dust in each other's eyes. After that, it was just an image, this idea that we weren’t entirely a piece of reality. And so, we let it slip into a dream and never spoke of it again.
The sparkles that were in our eyes faded. Not over time; it wasn’t over a tangible period such as a few weeks, but it occurred right then, right at that moment, like a candle being extinguished.
The murmurs on Lakeshore Drive were not whispers that spoke of our needs or longings.
They were echoes, sonar spreading out on the lake, across its expanse; a spectrum that ran far into nothingness.
The nothingness that it turned into a rich, inky shade of “nonentity.”
The city lights had no hold; they had no authority in the dense black richness of the world from which we had arrived.