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Thursday, December 13, 2012


The moon was a silver coin shining in the sky. The clouds crowned it in a pillow throne of wisps, the spaces between them spoke in low tones, in happy tones. The moon light shone down slow and silver. As it descended it lighted everything in its path. There were the buildings far to the left of him. Their windows were open and caught the light in a million tiny displays. In each of them a reflection of the moon peered back, tiny little moonlets shining at 45 degree angles. Inside the building another light seeped out, it was that white office light, man’s attempt to recreate nature. Against these two forces some silhouettes could be seen or imagined. The way he imagined them they were men and women at the end of a productive day. People who had worked and seen the results of their work. People who were pleasantly tired and at this point their mind would shut down peacefully, they would look around and yawn as a collective and as soon as the first of them had decided to leave the message would pass to all of them. It was time to go home it would say. And they would switch off their computers and sit for a while in the peace that comes when machines are no longer talking. The peaceful, deep quiet of an office building at the end of the night. Then slowly they would come together with the zipping of bags and the cracking of jokes and the return to another kind of life then they would leave. The moon lighted on a tree to his right and there he could see a leaf and it looked perfect. Curving and tapering to an edge that pointed towards the earth. It was serrated and from each of those tiny mountaintops there leaked oxygen and freshness. The cold of the night would stop the air flowing over it for a while and capture it like a photograph and some lucky soul who woke up early the next day would see one of those perfect masterpieces of nature, a drop of dew at the end of a leaf. And in it he would see a capture of a capture. Just as the cold had captured the moisture on the leaf so would the drop capture the sun in it and break it up into a million little pieces.

He looked at the moon and it looked back at him. It was an eye in the sky and this is what he saw it for right then. It pierced right through to the centre of him and he hated it. He hated that it could see him so weak and know how he was. He hated how implacable it seemed up there in the sky untouched by insecurities and fear, unwilling or unable to change but ok with that. He hated it with all the might he felt inside of him. It shot down shafts of silver spears to the earth aiming them at all the people it could see, the people it despised. He knew the moon must surely hate us all. How could beauty stand so much ugliness after all? Some of the shafts forced themselves into an office building. Right there at the edge of the windows and a little out of it he could see the battle take place. Inside there was light struggling to get out, imprisoned inside of this huge stone monster with a thousand eyes. The light tried to find its way out but then it met with the spears from the moon and they locked in a white battle. He couldn’t see who was winning but did it really matter? No one really won a battle one side jut lost slower. Inside of the building locked up more than the light were the people. He could imagine them there and he hated them too. He hated the waste their lives represented. He hated that they were okay with throwing away days and days to produce reams and reams of paper that no one would care about 100 or even 10 years from now. The great mass of humanity being disposable and disposing of their talents in things that would never outlive them. They were in there at this time because something important had to be done something that seemed important to them at this point. He could see them, he could see the petty rivalries and office politics they engaged in. he could see why no one wanted to be the first to turn off their computers; he could feel the fear of the silence when they finally did. He imagined the first of them being brave enough to let go of that hum they had been hearing all day, their great defence against the people around them and turn off his computer. The first person who would have to confront the quiet of a building at this time of night. The hopeless feeling that comes of working deep into the moonlight which with its shafts pierced through the lies created by the sun and deep, deep into the truth. And slowly the rest would too and finally they would leave. The giant monster with the thousand eyes and the soullessness that comes of waste would be quiet as his worshippers tried to sidestep through casual, bullshit small talk and he couldn’t look at it any more. He turned to his right and he saw a leaf there. It was serrated like a dagger. A dagger created not just to kill but to hurt. To wound, to maim. The spears of the moon bounced off it and made faces. Faces made of balcknesses and darknesses and greens. And this is all life was, something being swallowed up by the darkness awaiting all of us. He could see it in the faces. The faces that shimmered and changed. That became holes and the holes that became abysses and the leaves that would soon leave the world. There was something else there. Something shining in the cold, a small dew drop. It was beautiful and round and fully formed. A fat drop of blood at the end of the dagger. He wondered how it could maintain its bubbliness when a point shoved itself into it. Soon the sun would come up and as it had done for centuries it would kill off the moon’s children, it would blow them up into a million little pieces. By the time the sunrise was over the dew would not exist. The water there would have been split up into a million little pieces with no memory of what it once was. Another casualty of a war that had been going on forever. A war that neither the dew drop nor him would ever understand.

When he looked at the moon that night he could almost make out features of a human face. Right there were its cheeks, and they had holes in them. Not dimples but scars, and if you looked close enough you could see the craters it had for eyes. The craters were dark and bottomless, they looked sad and they took something away from the moonlight coming down. There was something beautiful in the sorrow but it was sorrow nonetheless. Around it the clouds seemed to bow down, to give supplication. But between the clouds and the moon there was all this space. They didn’t touch each other, it was a beauty that stood apart. A loneliness that happened only because the moon was not ready to accept help, or maybe because there was no help to accept. The clouds were after all vapour, they disappeared as soon as anyone leaned on them and the moon stood solid and silver except for those black, dark eyes but what could clouds ever know about darkness and grief. Maybe that’s why the moon sent down those shafts of silver light. Tears carried down on light. Tears that fell from the sky and landed on everything. To his left there stood an office building. It looked haunted. Thousands of windows but only some of them open. In some places all the light he could see was the darkness of what was beyond the moon in the windows. Behind this it was black and opaque. It couldn’t be pierced and didn’t want to be. In the few open windows he could see the silhouettes there. They didn’t look fully human. They looked as if they had lost some of themselves in the daytime. They sat at work long into the night obviously hiding from some truth they didn’t want to face. The truths we never want to face are the saddest and the truest. And in those buildings there were people typing furiously, hoping that this play of their hands on keyboards would put reality away for just a while longer. But sooner or later weariness would creep up on them. And they would shut down their machines. The machines would whine as this happened. The death throes of a horse as they went down for the night. Then there would be silence and no one would speak for a while. Hoping to stretch this moment of oblivion forever. This silence between not thinking and having to, they would try to hold on to it but it would disappear and another silence would creep in. they wouldn’t want this silence. They would fill it in with chatter and fake laughs and they would file out. But the second silence, it would follow them. It was part of them and it would follow them forever. And he was so heartbroken then that he turned away and caught sight of a leaf. The leaf swayed in the wind. It shook just a little like someone trying to hold back their sobs. The wind sent tremors down its edges and shivers back up them. Silver and green he looked at it. Silver and green and cold. So cold that tears were giving more weight to the sobs. A single drop was forming at the end of it, a drop that would be gone soon. The truth of the world was that we are all memories waiting to be forgotten. No matter how perfect or well formed. No matter how beautiful. The only fate awaiting us all is oblivion. And oblivion isn’t always dark. Oblivion for this drop happened in the heat of the daytime sun. It happened when this drop could be seen by all. The saddest thing about this was that being seen was what would mean it could never be seen again.

And in the distance the moon shone. It was silvery and wispy and blurry. It looked like it was sieved through the lens of a dream and it reminded him of other nights. The way it seemed just out of touch yet so close that he could breathe it in reminded him of the last time he stood and looked at it. The feeling of warmth at that time invaded him now and he was no longer looking at this moon. He stood there and all he could see was that other night, all he could hear, all he could feel. The sun shines but the moon lights he thought about that statement as he saw the clouds play around it. They were wispy like a wish that you can’t quite voice or a dream that you can’t quite remember or a memory that touched you from head to toe bathing you in the beauty of what it was. And the memories of the moon’s light found their way to an office building to his right and when he looked at it he though of schools long past, he thought of nights waiting for his father to come home. That’s what they were to him, office buildings. Place parents escaped to learn what they needed to so that when they came home they would have all the answers. He could see the light from inside the building peek out at the night. Looking  as if it were shy and scared to come out. Creeping out slowly, ever so slowly and behind the light the people. He remembered workmates he used to have. People who were more than friends. He remembered the parties and the inside jokes. And with sadness, sadness mixed with joy he felt jealous of those in there. He felt jealous of whatever it was they considered so important they would sit down and work until this time of the night. His best days had been when he had come home so tired that all he had to do to fall asleep was think of it. The lights playing on in the building reminded him of those dark, deep sleeps. Sleeps so complete that they were over before they began. Finished as soon as they started and he turned to his right and saw a leaf. The edges were serrated and looked like a knife. He remembered cutting his hand when he uses to cook. A prick here, a dab there. But it didn’t matter because he only cooked once in a while and when he thought about the leaf that looked like a dagger and the dagger that had pressed into his skin he also heard the sounds of comfort poured into his ear as the blood was kissed away. He could close his eyes and for a moment be in the kitchen that he loved and hear the splashing of water in the distance as someone readied his finger for a plunge in the stream. And he opened his eyes and he could see a small drop of dew forming at the tip of the dagger. The dew was round and perfect. In it he could see the moon being reflected and the building to his left and the nights past that had brought both him and the dew here. Well the dew, he wasn’t really there and that was how he wanted it. To not really be there, at least not now.