People baked mud into bricks and built
Towering edifices to impress their gods.
They made discoveries unravelling the mysteries of the universe.
People fought against injustice,
They took a stand for what they believed was right,
They banded together to help the weak.
They watched the walls fall.
They stood defiant in front of tanks and refused to move.
People worked on unimaginably complex problems and solved them.
They crossed the void between earth and the moon
To land on that distant world and return.
People felt joy at each other’s achievements,
They felt the warmth of love in their hearts
And they felt the sting of betrayal,
The heat of jealousy and the bile of rage.
People meant something once.
People accomplished so much
But none of it mattered.
None of it mattered.
None of it.
Taillights guiding me through the dark,
The only other sign of life on this lonely road.
Destination locked in but it doesn’t feel like home,
And again my thoughts begin to wander…
Not for the first time I think about life in perpetual midnight
The multitudes asleep, uncaring
(Easier to deal with than the usual awake, uncaring)
The roads my playground for eternity
Snap out of it as I see the road block ahead
Guilt and uncertainty wash over me as panic bursts my heart,
See the side road, make the turn,
Alone again on the road to somewhere that isn’t here
Single track roads and humpback bridges,
Blind turns and misty crossroads…
They used to hang people here you know?
But if they want to hang me they’ll have to catch me first.
Through sleeping villages and across fenceless fields
On, on into the night, every mile closer to home
Fills me with more and more despair;
Because home brings sleep, and sleep brings dreams
And dreams force me to confront who I am again.
Hold me in those eyes,
Don’t drop me now.
Suspend me, pull me in
Closing slowly until…
Pull away, avoid contact;
I’m sorry – we’re both sorry.
It wasn’t supposed to happen.
Not like this.
No page from your imaginary script,
No cue from the director,
This is wrong.
So why do I find myself repeating that tired cliche?
Why do I see this same scene
Replayed before me every time I close my eyes?
If this was so wrong,
Why have I carried it with me for years?
Why does the memory still raise a smile?
And why am I unable to imagine
Anyone in your place?
Didn’t get the job.
And no prize for second place.
You fucking failure
Karl. Karl. Karl. KARL! KARL!
For fuck’s sake. KAAARRRRRLLLL! Oh sorry,
I was miles away.
Nothing remains of that place now but a smouldering ruin, the hypoxic byproduct of good intention, festering cancer born of broken promises and shattered dreams.
He remembered briefly, with a sting in his chest, before moving on.
He did not look back.