Thursday, April 14, 2005

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The sky was overcast. The clouds crept slowly to cover the last inches of sunny sky as Pip climbed aboard the bus home.

The bus does not lead back home of course, it will take Pip somewhere near it; there he will have to walk the rest of the way. But the walk today will be heavy and slow, it will be laboured for Pip does not have the spirit in his heart to make it home today. No, his heart today is heavy as a tomb, as empty as a deserted throne. Even so, there is no room in it for hope. No, there is nothing in it at all to be filled.

As the bus trudged along its way, Pip kept his eyes on the things the bus left behind in its wake. He did not want to meet the gaze of other passengers; he did not want to acknowledge their presence. Why should he? No one else acknowledges him. Especially when he needed acknowledgment most.

Pip could not help but notice the frightfully dead things outside the window. The awkward while building that has sprang out of the middle of a field, now empty, decayed, with its windows open, as if inviting someone or something to look in. But even the panes were broken and moss has covered it. There is the fence around it, and creeping green life that has patiently found its way up the fence, over the barbwire at the top, so that the leaves, grass and weeds now blanketed the wire so thickly, anyone could simply climb over it. The sharp wire points are useless now, not even able to fight back the conquering greenery. Pip pitied the building and its fence.

Pip recalled the events of the past few weeks (he did not realise the building and fence had caused those memories to surge back into his consciousness), those things and those people who had managed to stealthily and swiftly rob him of everything he had hope in. And with such efficiency too! It was almost a conspiracy, an effort undertaken by all of them under the command of some higher power who decided Pip’s fate and life. Not a merciless power, not an evil power – it simply was because Pip didn’t matter. What is one life? Especially one as worthless as Pip’s.

That was his conviction. No, that was the fact. Pip knew he would not be able to realise his dream, even though he had but one dream his whole life. It was not a lack of luck, or some unfortunate turn of fortune. Pip knew he could never reach his dream because of his own failing, of his inadequacy, of the emptiness of his character. People around him simply reaffirmed that notion. The very people Pip hoped to lift him from his gloom turned out to be the ones that pulled him down into the gloom’s depths forever.

He saw rows and rows of short bushes, leaves yellow at the edges, branches bending downwards in a sad manner, as if weighed heavily by the pale, faded, sickly pink flowers. They seemed like a mockery to Pip, who was at once frightened of these diseased, dying flowers and also full of hate for them. He looked up at the grey canvas that was once the sky and secretly wished it would pour. He secretly wished for a thunderstorm so violent and so majestic that he would be swept away by its floods. Pip did not care where he was swept to, so long as it was not here.

Yet that was not to be. Pip was bluffing himself. He looked up at the clouds again and saw that the truth this time – the moody canvas of grey is now separated by a shard of sunlight that’s full of life and energy and… happiness. Pip did not smile. Even the sky now is leaving him behind, like everyone and everything else he thought a friend once. They all saw him, nodded their head once or twice, then continued on to happiness, never bothering to grab his hand and take him with them.

The bus stopped at the place that wasn’t quite home yet. Pip got down and promptly laid down on the pavement. He wanted to die, but if he tried to kill himself, it would not be the death he sought, no matter the manner of suicide. No, Pip wanted to just disappear, to close his eyes and fall asleep and never waking up, to melt into the air and maybe be taken someplace by the wind, someplace other than here. Pip’s only wish now is to become that very emptiness which has taken over his soul and spirit. He just wants to be empty. He just wants to be... Empty.


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