Monday, October 2, 2006

from a distance

Are there eyes on him? It is a matter of indifference. His actions are more from compulsion than for reward. More flight than hunt, more hiding than seeking. If it has been a race, it is one without a finish line. How can he finish? That would be the end.

His performances hold a fascination all their own. They mesmerize. Like watching demons hurl fire. He works without a net. He'd rather die than survive one more fall. Even that contradiction is resolved, not in logic but the logic of dreams. He runs, he flies, he falls, he dies -- and it is all the same. He wakes to find the dream continuing.

He knew the day would come -- whether he woke to it or whether every day is marked by the rising of the moon. That day of muted cries and muffled breath has rolled open like a stone from a tomb, and he must enter into the darkness. All his efforts could only put it off.

He has been caught, then, finally, it seems -- trapped with nowhere to turn. He is in the arena, now, and the fight is not for glory but survival. In this battle there is no glory. The promise of a crown of laurels amuses him, as must all implausible and obvious lies. Victory, if there were such a thing as victory, would mean only that he had fewer scars than otherwise. But in this battle there is not even survival. Everything that is, must end. What new thing is there? What good thing comes from being trapped by darkness?

But he has always been held by darkness.

Of course he knows that somewhere, someone is watching -- distant if not disinterested. What influence can they have, these vitrious stars with their sidereal humors? He counts it as a sort of friendliness. Indeed, distance makes it possible, this supposed benevolence. Any closer and the knives come out.



JR Striker said...

From whom do the knives come? From the vitrious stars? I think not. The light they give is to throw hope, as they are too far to give warmth. And the moon only reflects light, as it has no warmth of it's own to give.

Then who are the knives for? The darkness? For the darkness only hides the knives from view, and cannot be harmed by them. The light? The knives can but reflect the light in a new direction, and only cut off a sliver of light from it's original path.

The stars? Alas, the friendly star from a distance is only hope, but closer would certainly pierce the darkness and free you from it's tournament of pain.

Why knives for friendly influences? Is there any comfort in the hold of darkness? You know it's contures and shape, you have grown acustom to it's methods of attack and occasional retreats. It allows you to see the moon and play with light from the stars. Those friendly stars...

What if you were freed from the darkness? What would you do? What strange wonders would the light be? The contures and shape of it would be unfamiliar. The sights might distract you from the ensueing fight for survivial.

The fight would continue, just in a different arena, the home team arena, with fans instead of enemies. I bet a few friendly stars would show up too. You would have better weapons against your true opponents. Your bare hands would be armed, and you will have some armour as well. ...and the knives, yes the knives would be reserved for the enemy.

Jack H said...

We know who brings out the knives. And more than one, mind you. He is prepared, isn't he. He doesn't even trust steel. He. Him. Not me. What gave you that idea? For my part, I agree entirely with you. He is not what we would call rational. Was it Cain, for whom every man was an enemy? Poor Cain. He must be quite mad by now. As for his relationship with stars, we can only guess. He seems to think they're eyes. The eyes of gods -- black as only the outer darkness must be, with inconstant eyes that wink equally at every human action. Could he count such eyes as friendly? He seems to. It speaks of his wavering moral compass. It may be that he mistakes these supposed, petty gods for God. But as we know, God has responsibility, as well as power. This little god, if it has power at all, wields it with caprice. A moon god, then.

Who can say what he thinks. He probably doesn't know himself. No, he definately doesn't know *himself.* I know him a little, and I like him, but he doesn't know it. I don't think he can see me. It seems he's nearly blind. Maybe that explains the night. It may be daylight, for all he knows. How sad for him.

The knives are troubling. Such a primative way to kill, if that's his intent. I believe they're just for show, but he does have scars, and they had to come from somewhere. For my part, I am a peaceful man, and have done harm to no one. Why would you think it's me? Nevermind. It's actually a common mistake, and no harm done. But knives. Knives. They are so intimate, so up-close. Maybe that's why he uses them. It's the only contact he gets. To feel the breath, the blood, of someone else. To wrap a hand around a neck and pull it close and push in a blade. He'd have to free one hand to do this. Does he drop the other blade? Dangerous, to arm another enemy. But maybe there are no other enemies. Maybe he slashes at shadows.

No no. I'll see that he gets your message. But it is not I. Surely not I.


JR Striker said...

Well tell Surely that solitude in darkness is not necessary. There are friendly stars, after all, and they can be of assistance as well as a source of hope.

Sorry that I didn't catch the name sooner. But based on the sign-off, I thought... Anyway, no harm done. Strange spelling though, or is it Surely with a J? Jurely!???

I hope the message is recieved well, regardless of the confusion involved in the transmission thereof.

Jack H said...

Ah. It was Cain, not Surely. I'm sure it was Cain. Yes, I see it was. He doesn't use the name much, anymore. I suppose he thinks no one will know. But blood will tell. Cries out from the earth, somehow. Sounds like it's saying, "Cain." I'd change my name too, if that were the case. But not to Surely. That was your own idea. Surely? It has the virtue of certainty, and that's no small thing. But it falls not pleasantly from the lips. I think he would chose something more percussive. Less of the sibilant serpent, more of the cudgel and club. But maybe he’s forgotten, himself, after so long. And he does show a penchant for the slicing knife.

Do you mean Abjurely? If it's meant symbolically, I don't think it fits. He doesn't seem one to forswear himself. These endless passing years have taught him a rugged integrity, and if he has repented some ancient crime, that can represent no breaking of an oath. If your meaning is something else, it eludes me. I'll ask him, when I see him. He may have some insight. And we are on speaking terms, for all his wariness.

For my part, I've stopped thinking I know what's necessary for anyone else.