– If a man were to die, would you rather step on his head and sing a jolly song or die with him?
– I do not know. What sort of a man would he be?
– A most saintly one, with nothing for the angels to find but good deeds and virtuous thoughts.
– Well, I suppose I would step on him and sing then. A good man like him would not mind.
– And what if it were the devil himself?
– Or herself.
– Yes, or herself?
– Well, surely that would depend on whether it’s himself or herself.
– What if it were herself?
– Why, sing on the dead body of course. Certainly in the most heavenly realm of God a female devil would not dare get close to me, a man, for fear of breach of modesty, would she?
– I imagine not. And if it were himself?
– Death. Death it would be.
“Hello, ye, o child o’ mine! How am I to help you, with your awfully small claws and perfectly large nails?”
“O local o’ this land, are you not aware? I’m a traveler, from planets away, coming with a purpose in mind, and it is here that I shall do my duty.”
“And what is the purpose you speak of, o overgrown child? Are you in search of your dolls and toys, or a much loved and long lost pet?”
“No, it is not that I come for. Come closer and I shall tell.”
“What is it, young child? Is it perhaps an imaginary parent you miss? How lonely you seem. But my child, take your claws away. My scalp is no place for those. I can aid you, but there are nerves and receptors and such, one feels pain with the force of you. And see what you have done now, my misshaped and naughty guest, there is blood on my scalp, and my thinking has become warped, all because of your recklessness. Now I shall die without having helped you with your purpose. Oh, are you going back to your homeland? Well, farewell then, young traveler. I shall rest here for a while. The blood flow makes one rather tired. I shall close my eyes now. Farewell, child, and beware of the dangers of the way. Farewell.”
The teacher asked the curious kids, “What way can you think of for turning matter into energy, as E=mc2 suggests?” There was murmur in the class, talk of breaking up the atom in reactors and making new nucleons, then silence with faces pleading for answer. The teacher smiled and said, “Well, why, you can simply burn a piece of paper for that!” While he said, an student in the corner, with disorderly hair and a dangling tongue, suddenly broke out in a chuckle, then laughed harder and lost balance and howled with laughter on the floor, tears of joy flowing down and his voice making the shocked class and interrupted teacher sound ever more silent, until he had no energy left for the laughter and used his body mass as energy, bit by bit, until he was no more.
He felt a rage that demanded guns and powerful punches and an enraged calmness to command the means to all that he wanted, analyze it, execute it, and let the room be awed for a moment, before the little awed ones screamed wide-eyed and the cops arrived and families wept and prisoners raped, at the utter peace of the bellow that came with the strike and shook away the tiny bits stored in tons before and now emptied for a moment to pave the way for regret to set in and wipe away the awe and only a moment left till it had all blown out into the universe to have not a lasting impact but a fraction of a second of forgettable brotherhood of the vast minority of enraged assholes sensing the awe. But instead he smiled and turned away, hoping the man wouldn’t be offended by such an indecent gesture as turning away.
“There’s more to me than meets the eye,” he said. So I ripped off his clothes and skinned him and exposed all his bones and extracted those and went through every little cavity among the organs and cut out his veins and knifed his feet and brain and he was right, much more than meets the eye.
A marvel that he had nothing to do. A world so large, a thing for everyone, and yet he had nothing. Nor did he look for much. It’d all be mindless labor. Nothing to care about; all that had been tried. So he sat there, and slowly even the information came down to zero and his mind started to go blank, an unintended meditation. So he meditated until he was ready to starve, and it hit him, starvation! New info, new thoughts, meditation was disrupted. He went rapturously to his food, with all the brain power concentrated, all walls white and nothing to distract. He tasted tastes never tasted, and thought all he could about the bits he had eaten, the little blemishes on the plate, tried to count from memory the seconds it had taken to eat, envisioned the precise colors. He picked his teeth and scrutinized every piece he found, then tasted again, compared the taste to that of the freshly eaten. But at some point the teeth were empty, the plate memorized in every detail, tastes connected and compared and imaginarily combined, and the sounds of chewings of all particles analyzed. Then the blank came again, the forced meditation, and so he lived on.
It began again, the pitfall of an end. The high skies of a beautiful life, shot with precision, all words well thought out, a heaven of an earthly life. And I could feel myself falling away from it, right back to a chair in a house with no jumping about to rush when it should, end the lines where the beauty stays lingering. How could I hold on? It was a permanent cycle of addiction to that heavenly earth above and I kept rolling down and climbing up to another and wondering if all the writers and directors and actors and fictitious characters and fake furniture were all-powerful creators that stayed in their heavens for as long as they wishes and climbed down only when desired and of course they never did. And if they were not, how it must pain to fall from a world created by oneself and left above for others to fall from, never to be the same again, repetition never the same. Though I hit the chair and it doesn’t hurt save the thought of a feat I rolled from and realization that my innards had become empty of the heavens without a blink or a trace other than a far memory that could fade away as a dream that’s been named.