Dress a pig in a suit and it’ll still taste like bacon. Give it a drink or two and it might start to feel human. Smoke stained walls and ceiling, the beige rages onward from foot to sky. Blue curls rise and gray ash falls. The orange breathes life. Legs clink and clash and the whole thing shakes uncomfortably. A record spins and noise permeates the airwaves, distorted by signals shot out from each individual brain, orthogonal to their intentions, all directions muted by amplitude cancellations until the damn mess sounds like pink noise.
Words fall from lips and messages are imparted by skin contact. The air is cold outside and I shiver under this wool coat and look toward the sky to try to identify Venus, Mars, and Jupiter, laid out nicely between clouds and my breath. The wind rises and instead of flinching I try my damndest to relax and let it blow through my negative space. Open your atoms and become nothing. Exhale.
The warmth inside is nothing as awkward as the embrace that follows. The lights are brighter and the claws that rise from beneath grip tighter. Sideways glances assert that I am correct in that this situation is less than ideal, but escape would mean confrontation and no fun and who has no fun when you can have fun. A swoop, slam, and a hearty cackle.
The air is even colder than it was before but it doesn’t feel as cold anymore just a lot more wobbly. I dance to the beat uncontrollably, back and forth and back and forth and side to side. I close my eyes and see the lights dancing behind my eyeballs. There are other people here and they are also dancing. We are sea anemone, caught in the current.
Door. Light. Light. Light light. Light. Door.
I open the door and double check the refrigerator to make sure I’m in my own house. Ah, yes, it is, I am. Crack. Time moves faster here. The numbers fluctuate and blink. The ceiling seems to have started shifting. Best to retreat from heights lest we are tossed nonchalantly from our perch. The wood is colder than the couch and easier to swim on, though it’s difficult to sink my arms beneath the waves.
Urges rise and the blades of grass are malleable and accommodating. The bark is cold and uncomfortable. My voice whets the freezing air. My retching is heard by no one but the stars.
My toe is bleeding and it won’t stop. Crawl up the stairs with each limb on each stair until you are at the top and turn on the light and turn around and look at yourself.
My gums are bleeding and I spit in the sink and rub my fingers around the perimeter then raise them to the mirror drawing ornate shapes and symbols before telling myself to fuck off, and then I disappear to stage left.
That asshole in the mirror thinks he knows more than I do.
by Dan Diehn (@diedan)