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Within the Eye of the Entity


The following was written in response to Netflix's Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes, in particular the six days Bundy spent on the lam in the Aspen Mountains.

“The windows are open, and the fresh air is blowing through. And the sky was blue, and I said, 'I'm ready to go,' and walked to the window and jumped out.” – Ted Bundy to ABC News on his escape from the courthouse in Aspen, CO, during which he spent six days on the lam, lost in the wilderness of Aspen Mountain.


First Day (Interphase)



I had not come into my own for only that which I’d been given. At least I knew this early on, held up in logic laced inherent to the meat of my desire, undoing every reason anyone might offer to obey. If there’s anything I’d wish that you could find in your own stuffed heart to say for me, it must be that: how little choice I had in choosing to set myself apart, to take on anything I wanted without question, no matter how impossible to parse. Not that I really give a shit, you shitheads, because I don't. I’m just saying what I know, if for no other reason than to give you another chance to not believe me, like any father worth his weight in common sense.


I was not so inherently different from you, after all, that I’d be spotted hobbling in broad daylight, having just flown down from captive air, ready to become myself again like some drunk angel with a hard-on. You should have seen me shining, reeling in new anger as I went on past any number of rich, beautiful citizens of wherever I really was, each so sewn up with their whole lives ahead of them they couldn’t blink.


I knew deep down, to them, it didn’t matter what I’d done, so long as they were still allowed to shop, leaving me be despite what else I’d like to let them in on given the proper scheduling, though they’d have to get in line. I was so liquid moving free again among their property it was contemptible to even me, which became the only reason I kept moving, then the only reason I had ever moved: to distinguish who I was, in God’s own image, may He never rest but in remembrance of all the worst yet said and done, among whom I already saw myself as #1 Most Wanted. I’d already picked my crown out, after all; all I needed now was a ring for every finger, and a throat for every scream.


To be clear: I would have sworn over my whole life to better faith right then and there, given this moment to start over, had I not required more photographable evidence of my unlimited potential, within your definition of the crimes. Without your participation, most local mythologies would have made a phantom of me from the get-go, after all; and though I already felt myself funded into future replications as sound and image fleshed between the ads of every household fifty years after the fact, I needed eons, ever after.


And so any path back to freedom required my holding close your expectations of me, as a dick. You alone could lead me forward from the scent of my own captivity in time, the bloodless judgments you decreed by rubbing together what now remained your imagination providing the very framework from which your sidewalks led me forward into the state of nature from which I’d come, parsing where the trail across the mountain scrolled before me in the shape of all our lovers’ trembling ever felt, the blank below the surface of the dirt like a hollow body struck dead sleeping, still warm where the track marks of roving searchlight from the patrols fell from above and all around me, anywhere I wasn’t, blinding the gaps in here and now.


And though I could already feel my teeth separating in my head where all the exposure would later come to wear me down, I felt it all as only further activation; my communion; a totality allowed to withstand the mirage the local community had installed as tourniquet for their remorse against who they believed they could contain me as, another myth held up so far back it predated criminology. To them, I was like a spirochete wearing my face; stuffed with the same unwilling air as once had laced your lungs during you own ugliest recreations, your mirage of ministry in mortal grace.


As if you care. You tired bastards. Even the least neural offspring among you zits should have to understand the abstract sprawl of such a model of personal misery as was mine in being returned to mobile bones. You think I wanted you to give me a reason to have to return to being free? As if there’s ever been a true incarnation of human freedom?


At least I was as close now as I could be; and honestly I felt sick for those stuck living day in day out beyond the edge of rampant unreason in the mountains’ backbone at my feet, who had already been made a tool of so completely, mined of its prior richness and its future beauty each alike, it wasn’t even a triumph to have grafted myself back into circulation, nor did it come without an immediate upgrade in my potential for milking all your fear. People see nature as boundless only because they have no ability to recognize themselves among it, you understand, and who can blame them for their failures, brined in private horrors, endless guilt. They’re barely cows. It was my fat intellect alone that kept me thriving for so long amid a cast of so many other more basic freaks, long primed against such mistrustable recreations as those that filled the front end of your lives, much your hilarious imagination of participation in anything so holy as the drinking of blood, the inhalation of another’s final exhalation.


So really it doesn’t matter what I did or how I moved, today or any day before; only that I still could, despite the equally crass ambition of their authority, the laws that hadn’t stopped me from being anything I wished to. I could feel the trees with each and every step I fell forward into, there with the incarnation of God’s continuous lack of any presence at my side, the same as ever, begging me to be a good boy just this one time, to take a knee and succumb to all that He’d already provided for me after all: my cock in my pants, the blood in my body, the screams that coursed my memory half-alive still in a wet dream, enough to jack off with in a turtleneck somewhere like anybody. But what was I really supposed to do with that shit? Succumb in wonder? Lay my arms down inside my mind now after all? Lend a prayer?


No, only now was I beginning to live up to my abilities. And given what they’d already proven every single living person ever likewise feared, I knew it would not be long before I understood next how to outdo my own derived horizons even still, in receipt of which I’d find myself only that much less truly grateful in gestation.




Second Day (Prophase)



The ineluctable elides. I don’t know what those words mean, but somewhere within them I found utility precious to those for whom no narrative would overcome my thirst, for nothing less than having long been interrupted by the living will of others. Nor does any description fit to the corrodible attributes of sunlight penetrating the undigested landscape of how I was carried forward in my dreams of someone else’s future hell, the only warmth readily available upon a land so flat and narrow as must be ours.


Had I been able even for a second to stop slavering over how it felt to be so indestructible and at the same time so misused, I could have found a way to trace a working map of the whole world as it was and one day would be, right in my mind. I wanted to make fuck with the knotholes in everything, the slits in the casing of the pupae yet to bloom, the fall of my own footsteps on every potential gravesite as conscribed by fetid soil. I was shining still so brightly in my renewal that I’d already begun to find new ways to come apart, maintaining semblance of human structure in mid-motion only across packets of the lambent trauma that I’d caused, each by now as small and silent in me as a dream someone I’d tried to love had not stuck around long enough to actually have. Even the mud I’d encouraged across my exposed skin to blend me better into darkness did less a good job than my own inexorable jargon, radiating from me with such fury that even the dark had begun to bend itself in twain for its own good, in other words to keep me from ever leaving it behind, which was the kind of curse that I could understand.


Sometimes I even walked in calmness, counting my blessing, pretending to be breathing at the absence of a product in pursuit, as I no longer needed breath now, much less other junk like food and water, feeding as I had been for so long off my own slick semen reabsorbed.

Really I needed nothing more than further space, another slip in the procedure allowing me to leak back into my own image armed with new faith and new ideas. By now only the black side of the moon could see me coming, and only the whimpers of the future bitches I’d spare no chance to providing the wider silence with hidden rhythm. You have any idea how easy it was for me to come inside your homes while you were out? How quickly I could take your place in your own life and black it out? There had always been so many cracks in your foundations, one for every flutter of the shutter of an inanimate eye through your whole life, living only in ongoing anticipation of innovation by passive proxy, as if anyone but you might come upon the next great big idea.


As for me, now and forever, no matter which way I went the night had walls; though whereas before I’d been able to slip through them like a sieve, out here, as my exhaustion became viral, they would reorchestrate their ambient information in response to whatever I imagined I believed, an early incarnation of the same mutant technology that once our overseers caught up to it in intellect would hold back whole generations of my kind. I got such joy standing with my arms raised toward the mindless patterns of the dim choppers passing back and forth there just above me, in the blind, unable to placate me with dimensions no matter how high along the rungs of God’s extended absence I could climb. Whose neck do you think I still most coveted but our hypothetical creator’s, after all, if for no other reason than to prove my own top weight? To kiss at last what so many others had falsely claimed to, as I saw it. In some ways I prayed for these lame cops to get their shit together and snatch me up and take me in, fill me with the fucking electricity already, so that I could begin the next phase of my best work, wreaking my havoc in the kind gardens of the afterlife. Each pending breath then came with a measured manner of forgiveness of my own, the only kind I’d ever known, likewise the only kind I’d ever wanted: to persist in an immortal contradiction the likes of which only those who had the fortitude could yet require, and thus deserve.


It was within the realms of such anticipation that I began to rebrand myself as my own father after all, the only chode I’d never completely understood. I felt his long flat hand in the small of my back, pinching the lard spanning my ribs, reminding me it could only be a few further feet from here that this mode of our world ended and another world began, which I knew he didn’t mean the way I wanted. His continued absence had always molested me, you know? Like it had to be worse than anything I myself had done, from an eternal standpoint? He used to bite my ass from on the inside without even existing, without a face to bash in from afar, and I would scream in fury that only after decades became pleasure after all, struck into hilarity so immense it undid all the supposedly unbending facts of physics.


And yet I knew there had to be a conduit within me still to correspond to, rushing forth from the same path I’d practiced in my cell as sets of six; the strum of my lungs flush with hacked stumps of bitter honeys; the arms of branches pointing false directions from some thrumming center in my blood; eyes in the back of my elbows, up my asshole, in the hollow centers of my teeth. I must have fallen thousands of miles around that stupid hill, tumbling and writhing in my own broached victimhood, in open pain, each and every inch of how the path bent in all directions only ever straight down, at such a rate I found it impossible to find time to even bleed. I couldn’t understand how they couldn’t fucking see me out here, as I was: full up with passion, overflowing, the most alive I’d ever been, as if my whole bright future now hung before me in the isolated panes of spreading moss, in the packs of black mosquitos that swarmed upon me any time I closed my eyes to hide my mortal apparition from myself, fearing nothing but the possibility of never be allowed to play the game, despite already knowing how in the end we were each due exactly what we begged the most for.


Were we not? Did we not deserve that in the least, after all this pain? Should I go on? Or don’t you believe me now that I had so little left to lose, even after seeing how completely I’d put my money where my mouth is? Well, that’s your problem, however unexamined in your mind as it must be. It doesn’t even have to be a matter of unmasking your own worst sins’ work, pal, or trying to argue to a master that you could embody such wide misery as mine. Believe me, I know you couldn’t. And not because you wouldn’t want to, but because you’re already owned and out to pasture, waiting to remember how to feed.




Third Day (Metaphase)



Pumice-colored veins of further false paths descended just after the stroke of midnight, with the rain, as the last creases of supposed nuance to local fauna predicted the longest rift of any life. I knew they intended to turn me against my own best path, to make me believe I could no longer offer host to my prowess, despite how my every footfall was a drama I’d been rehearsing since having been so young as to not know the names of my own feelings after all.


I must admit I admired simply everything about the way my lack of sleep had lulled the slope, connecting every step and breath to one long flatness, against cold waves of silt that lapped and gnawed just out of rhythm with my breasts. I became perhaps the kindest I had ever been for at least a second, feeling closer than ever to the absence of a faith, which somehow made the blank feel nearly holy after all, though if you’d transcribed my screaming for a more direct experience of understanding, at the swallows, at the clover, at the sun somewhere so far overhead it made us drunk, you could have predicted the next three decades of stock prices, and then you could have lived almost forever.


The bands of branded hope that began to fall out of me for now were silver-yellow, like glinting fish, then they were orange, like something shamed. I knew if I didn’t stop bleating I would give my location away to any shithead worth his weight in telling time, which didn’t concern me in the slightest, faced with so much inadequacy after all. With so much loathing and unloading on my image in the heavens as described to me through having outlived every person I had imagined I might decide one day to really love. Every second they couldn’t nail me made me that much more starry-eyed for my own dong, its craving core already so engorged with inspiration it had turned me into my own entourage forever, when nobody else would.


And so instead of attempting to determine anything like my own way, I crawled across the cracked lodge of the black ground for the most part with my eyes closed, lighted by sparks where no orifice would let me spurt. It felt like being fried and eaten in the same stroke, the loins of the earth becoming my own loins equally also, so delicious as any BBQ you’ve ever been to. I could have gone forever just like that, in fact, with no one left to stop me from believing my own claims of what must come, brimming over with every draft of language they’d be using to eventually describe me to anyone but me, in an attempt to confabulate some actual reason I’d be sorry for.


And who could blame them? I wanted to override me again too, over and over, in rising rain, if just to prove how it was a wonder I’d been created, and now another wonder I understood still how to crawl, to stand, to cheer myself across a finish line that just kept moving every time I thought I’d found a better home. I know, I know, it sounds like bull; each and every urge within me so hyperbolic, just like every word anyone else had ever written, or ever would. How far apart could we be pushed from who we wished to be and who we had to? How long would we allow a true experience to be beheld, one that couldn’t stand to be dissuaded, intervened on? As if we were all each only an organism who lives for the next iteration of its own software, exclusively designed to be described by the work of neural algorithms as found in patience, sympathy, and faith.


Far more beautiful to me were the soft columns of buzzing bees that paved the way behind me, poured from my sore throat like exhaust leftover after sucking any inch of wind down across my supposed apparition’s ongoing teething, through the mask. I held on only now within the masking colors pushed to obesity in gray, finding suddenly less and less space between the bending organism of the sky as it remained and why it mattered, within my understanding of how virtually death works once let inside. I was only just as lost as I desired to be, after all, feeling every stitch of recognition kindly granted as my raw innards gnawed at the remains of whoever else had ever gotten in my way, including me.


Of course the less flesh I carried in me, the more I grew. I began to see wide unblinking shafts of changeless light that spanned the rain, unleashed between them, as upon some once long hidden factory floor. Soon, piles of meat like piles of knocked out nursing students high as my head, stacked up the transom between hilltops in each direction left unlocked. I wanted to claim it all as my own legacy, but for the first time since I was too small to remember I understood that any person’s contribution to the total haul on human earth was only part of the deceit, and that if I couldn’t get my numbers up in time I’d be left out of an even more important desecration, one far too far along to be described as anything but out of hand.


It was perhaps this sense alone that kept me teeming, falling forward in the bend of so many slick tectonic plates, shuddering at the same rate that I was being lifted over in myself, such that as the rain turned into hail, I called it smoke, and where as I allowed myself to take part, to breathe it in, the rest of the world grew only tighter, less its own. Panels of encrusted crystalline rose up and promised to support me on each side, reminding my body that if I followed through to my ambitions, I would find narration, and through this narration, I would continue to more completely understand how best to wrest the legend of my ability to fit in from my more repressible aspects, such as my decorous admiration for the letter of the law.


Instead of many paths, then, as had been promised, there appeared before me only one, to which all prior outlets in the guise of reality appended. This was the very same sort of trick I’d used to wrangle my willing way into an unnamed number of human lives; I’m talking about the kind of progress found in learning more completely to speak without the duplicity of language, as you are finding yourself now fully bound up in, mimed in a voice I’m sure you must imagine isn’t mine, as forced through someone else’s lips by my commandment, which at first for you might be terrifying, until, in no time, it’s all there is. As by now you can accept that I’d learned to bluster syntax out of my ass and call it my own, which is why you should accept no substitute for what I’m selling. There was nothing other to be argued, no way to wear me down, if I did not allow it; yes, there was simply only this phantasm of vast weight crammed in my white balls, the rapid-fire of every other person’s fertile conscience taming my true form into something more like a vocation. Any end that I passed over, through, or into, after all, had never really been the end at all. It served only as a correction to the record I refused to drop my needle onto, for I could smell you never really watching like you said you would.


Even still, despite the gorgeousness of being ganged up on again by both nature and my fellow man, they could only press me full of conceptual cowardice so far before I felt the flames within me climbing out of reach. I knew already how if I played it right, you and they and all these other fuckfaces in between might have no idea in looking back one day, when I finally decide to have succumbed to eternal rest in my old age, that there was nothing I could gather, and no one wiser waiting at the far end to tap me out; there would only have been me, alone and thriving, on my own private Magic Mountain; and giving in only because I’d finally learned to wish to.


And so it didn’t matter which way was up or down or in or out; it only mattered what kind of tie I would next select to use to hold my head onto my neck when it was required of me to have eyes of my own, a tongue, some bones to replicate the apparition of eventual punishment from within. Can you even imagine how overwhelming it must have been for me to know I could not be defeated by my anatomy? That of all the corpses I had carved up and left behind, I alone controlled the working heat of my own blame? Might you come to love me after all, if not in spite of all of my lore, then in the exact same shade of empathy you crave?




Fourth Day (Anaphase)



No one in heaven has survived. If they deserved to, they’d still be down here. As am I. Or at least I’ve worn on long enough it’s not unquestionable to imagine I might continue growing old for long enough that I might finally come out back at the beginning. And I’d still do it all over just the same.


You know I loved you, right? Whoever you are, full as you once were of so much grace, within a world where had there never been me, there could never be another? It won’t be long, regardless, no matter what, before you’ll end up kneeled over before my image shown in graft to the undead, flickering and never fading, hour upon hour, and we still won’t call it worship, not quite yet. There’s no such thing as the long haul, after all; there’s only where the word ends. And I’m still out here. I’m all mine.


I believe regardless of all else, you’ll find all future action not a question of conditioning, but of your own natural talent for changing how you tell the story ever after, a form of alternative creation haywired only by the contraption once called logic. In other words: every single one of us are wrong, no matter what we think, and always will be.


What a game. What a sick state of mind without any proper world to lay it down in and not be blamed. Are you still going to let me know when you’ve stopped listening, or at least quit with rolling your eyes so hard it hurts, with as little time left as there is that you’ll feel anything? So have I known you as one who only ever doubts, living out the whole rest of your life before you even felt your premonition struggling to make your mind come awake again one last time before the crowbar came down. So much for personal brand, right? And so much for destiny prescribed.


As for me, I’d prefer to have to pretend to be surprised, having already made my preparations for advancement and fulfilled them. Sometimes you can’t know what might wish to live inside you until it’s too late; though it’s always too late for folks like us, isn’t it? Surrounded by viruses. Without a link to click in any future that makes us ever really feel alive.  


To be honest, all I ever really wanted was a sister. Someone to share my tears with. To have been infected with such sharp spirit in the same breath, at last allowed on the same team with someone I admire in this game of chromosomes and guilt. Would you do me the honor, just this once? It doesn’t seem that there’s much time left. And I’d like to try again to find a reason to carry on, no matter which of us it hurts or how much.


How about now? You’re really not giving me a whole lot of options here at this late hour, after all we’ve been through. I don’t want to have to become rude. But I get what I want, you see, and I want action. Hot points in the plot. A stirring narrative with a confidently driven voice. What else is the point of living, hm? To have stood around well enough to go unnoticed, having only ever done the best for all involved?


Okay then, listen. Let’s play a better game. This one will be good for every side. I’m just going to need you to lie down here, in this mud, where I’ve been living. Now. And with your fucking hands behind your back, the wrists together, fingers interlocked. It goes real easy this way, understand? Saves all the darker trouble later, when you can’t remember how we’ve agreed in silence to proceed.


Great. Now put this bag over your head. Don’t worry what it’s made out of. Our little gift. All natural. A perfect fit for you and you alone. There should be a hole in there that goes around your mouth just right. That’s to give your graft a place to breathe from inside the entity. If you don’t know him yet, you will.


Right, OK, awesome. Just like that. See how much easier when we work together?


Now when you feel me start in squeezing, you squeeze back. Use whatever part of you comes most natural. I’ll have suggestions, to be put forth by having faith in what I already know we are. Passing over all the needles in our condition by transcending. Into the leaves inside you you can’t shake. It hurts at first then it gets easier. Until it just comes open.


Never mind the stench, OK? It goes away some day, like all the rest of this. Besides, who doesn’t like being reminded of such an important time in both our lives? For instance, next time I take a dump, I’ll think of you. All over my hands, my face, my feelings, ever after. 


You’re so raw. So many hopes I’ve never glimpsed before all lathered up in oil within you, all this time. You’ve got to trust me; you look great. Such a picturesque interior and even better horizontal posture, given no choice. Soon you’ll be all there is to see over the land out here for miles and miles in all directions—hung in the trees, lacing the stones, ecven blocking the goddamn moon out, understand? Even better, you’ll be forever on my mind. Lashed to the flesh of our cognition, thru the end of winter, into spring.


So, thank you, Queen. For your participation. For everything already done. Do you like to be called that? My one and only living Queen? Personally, I think it’s got just the right kind of ring, a perfect fit. Now what I’m really wondering is if there’s anything you’d like to call me in return? Just you think about it. Use your imagination.




Fifth Day (Telophase)



(T. comes into a clearing made of stone)


(T. sees piles of rotted mush framing all horizons) (No apparitions, not a bone or a wisp of cinder from how the sky is turning scourged upon itself)


(He sees his mother, younger than he is, with her back turned, on her knees)


(Her stomach has been punched open, punctured skin) (She’s sobbing so hard she shakes the air between the lenses) (So much leakage, barely breathing)


(Only her screaming can be heard) (The sharp tint of how her innards’ flesh could produce such a high pitch makes T. feel sick for the first time he can remember, his whole life) (But not forever)


(He runs to try to touch her, to cover her mouth up) (He is her son still) (He doesn’t want to have to hear his name formed in the wailing) (So well it stings) (Just before he’s close enough to touch her, he hits the glass) (Glass around her size from every angle) (Susurrating)


(Banging, banging) (No matter how he asks she still won’t look) (No edge left to the world but where she would have begged him not to come out of her) (To not have to see her like this)


(It’s too familiar) (He can’t stop falling) (Gray on gray) (Flies in spiral mounds that compile themselves surrounding, endless miles) (Tubers and pigments) (Gnawing)


(Her shit is all over his own hands, inside his mouth, inside his lungs) (An empty hiss) (A rub that knocks the night down) (Mounds on mounds of shredded flesh) (A world so full of death there is no core, no word, no emblem)


(Soon he can’t remember having even seen her thru the black)


(The night is turning)




Jesus

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Help

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I’ve been out here long enough now

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Please will you help me


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Please, God

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I’m starving

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Everything hurts

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Hey, God, you little shit, can you please hear me

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God, I’ll give anything

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I don’t want to go yet—Not tonight

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I can get cash; a lot of cash; just give me time

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Please give me mercy—I am a father

Or at least I hope to one day be

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Father of tides

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Are you there, God?

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I really need you now please

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Please

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Yes, I swear, I will live only for you

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I’ll do anything you ask

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Lord, can you hear me?

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Help me

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Help me

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Gotcha

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Haha

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Only kidding, of course

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Don’t you know me better than that by now?


Innocent from the beginning, and always a good sport

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Boy, you should have seen your stupid face—“Oh God, dear God please”

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As if I’m simply only another one of you

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Or you exactly

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Can’t you even take a joke?

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People these days, I swear, they don’t even remember how to tell from true and false

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So goddamn tender

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Just like me ☺

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But to be honest—and I’m being sincere now, since I have your attention finally—

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I can’t remember how to move

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Like I mean I can’t feel my legs or my face, my fingers

Or where I want to make them go they won’t

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It’s been like this for me before but never for so long now

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So listen,

God,



If you’d just let me be myself again

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Just give me another chance to get back out of here and into normal

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This time I’ll be kind, I swear

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I’ll make nice dinners, set the table

I’ll go to bed at proper times

I’ll get a real job


I’ll even pray

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I’m really actually not messing around this time

It’s so slick in here, you see? So fucking sticky


I can’t see beyond my breath within the whorl—In here where they keep needling me—becoming me—Whoever they are or would have once been—Wrapping their arms around me, holding me down as long and low as they can go—I love it so much—Biting my lips, filling my sacs up—With their silence—Their miles and miles of rot and grief—until it bursts—then like that it just starts over, no space between the repetitions, every time


It’s more like one big body than all those dozens in the pictures; billion of them, sewn together in my release

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Nothing like the land of God at all, or at least not the God that I imagine you believed in

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Instead it’s more like—pleasure? Yes, an immense pleasure, larger than anything could ever be—the kind of pleasure that hurts more than it purrs

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But someone has to do the hurting, don’t they?

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And why shouldn’t it be me?

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I don’t know anymore, honestly

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I can’t take anything for granted as such, any more than I already always have

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To be quite honest, if you’ll indulge me, I really am by now slightly afraid—more of my own face, though, than all this darkness, of course—if it’s still my face now, under the masks

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And I no longer believe it is

Or I hope it isn’t

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The greatest hope I’ve ever had

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O Lord

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My Christ

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My whole body, it is ringing

Bells all up my ass and thru my teeth

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And who, may I ask, is calling?

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Yes, Hello?

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Is it really you?


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I’m really sorry I can’t remember your name anymore

I know it’s not the first time and I hope it doesn’t have to be the last

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I swear I’m trying to calm down, to learn to listen

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Really trying

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So please stop screaming

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Go ahead…

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(T. sees blue meat in loose muscle laced between the last locations he had forgotten he had slept)


(He see volumes of black books w/ black pages and black printing, bound with human hair)


(He finds he is standing in broad daylight, hands in his pockets, grinning, before the pearly gates)


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(Each time we blink, the cycle bends) (By that I mean whatever happens next continues to append itself to the record of all that previously had been known to have occurred)


(Meanwhile, nothing else left in the future ever changes)



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So shall it be




Sixth Day (Cytokinesis)



At the heart of the maze, I saw how none of this was really me; neither thinking or speaking. I was just some random duck with a flat brain and a broke ass. I had no purpose. Nothing to worship. Nothing at all.


If only I could remember that, could keep it closer to me than my own ideas, so small as to have been replenished by feeling even briefly so engraved with reservations.


Instead I decided to keep this fleeting secret to myself until too late; to cram it down with all the other mud and spindling shells I’d stamped to slumber in my cognition, wherein in turning to I no longer had a voice in my own say, no matter how else you’d try to frame it later, upon the altar, at your wake.


Until then, I’ll just keep making my own version of progress, with God’s own mirage grin burned on my face. With my hands up and the sky recording everything, though at that point there’ll be nothing left to say. Which for me was always exactly when at last I could begin to feel the flow of the wind around me, the click of the tape engaged, the slip of the film as it describes us into myth. No matter what they say, it won’t be silence.


What there will be from here is herds afar, each and all of whom imagine they can read between the lines of any live performance. Here with the masks over our mouths. With minds as wide as can’t be covered from any distance, even so up close it masks one’s own understanding of their perspective. Hands on the wheel, following the lines that are all we have to draw us through disorder, from here into modernity, wherever that lives, until in the end all you have to do is form your own beliefs and rest in peace.





Blake Butler's most recent book is Alice Knott.

Within the Eye of the Entity

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