I walk among statues of the people I swore I’d defend. They all stare at the center of the city, the Citadel of Lost Dreams. A group of cloaked men walk to the entrance but stop to look at me. One of them in the back touches their shoulders making them collapse lifelessly. Shadows cover his face and still I could see his eyes. In his eyes radiates a white, illuminated fury.
When a darkness manifests from our hearts
Into existence it’s a blight of the World Tree.
We tried living on green plains and to be free
But we burned it all away. The story repeats.
Twelve blights forsake the roots fighting to live
Among desiccation. We only take and never give.
I spoke the lost truth born from the Loom
Of Woven Lies to avoid impending doom.
The reality we’re all too afraid to take witness,
But it’s there within the heaviness of our hearts.
Inside there is a war we wage that’ll never end
Because we never learn. I stand guilty as well.
My heart left calloused from attempts to see
While still blind. Words others said resonate
Like birds singing yet they’re nowhere now.
Why did they lie? I’m left here hung by their words,
My noose; the condemned convict left for the crows.
All I did was ask for the truth then they took swords
Against my existence. “All the stones a giant throws.”
I’ll burn in white flames until we can see eye to eye.
Glyphs; symmetrical alchemical radicals
Of matter and energy. Inside this DNA
We can see the simple base of existence.
The eternal dream calls to each of us by name
Yet, do we even hear it? Heads hung in shame.
Take a moment, calm down, and listen. Feel the tide,
Time slipping on by and life’s clockwork mechanisms
Ticking as gears turn. We are glyphs etched into clay.
Evolution or transmutation? The questions we all relay.
Give me a moment longer to etch who we are into the code
Of the Universe. Never forget the way it was. Just don’t erode. . .
A pair of dice, a canteen half full of water,
My tattered clothes, and an aged claymore;
The items I take with myself into this minor hell.
Legends say a monastery once used this place
For burials until a necromancer cult infiltrated.
The clergy couldn’t stop them. They penetrated
Every facet of the faith until they could replace.
Eventually they created a laboratory deep underground
To reanimate the deceased, inspired by fabled liches.
Fabled. The truth is they aren’t. Two factions of the dead
Fighting for revenge centuries overdue. I’m just unlucky.
I slept sound in my home yesterday. In the late of the night they came
And dragged me to this death trap. A victim, a candidate; the same.
I was told to listen to my heart whenever I find myself unsure.
Well I haven’t seen any certainty. This sickness with no cure.
The skies once held much better dreams and aspirations
Among wispy clouds. Silver linings, yeah, they fade away
When there’s no way to ever go back. Altitude unreachable,
At least for now I’m much too far from that calming skyline.
Evil exists even when people are blind. I couldn’t walk away.
A curse placed upon me will run its course. All I can ever do
Is fight against the fate I’ve been given. Is this my punishment?
Armies of the undead rise to meet me. Our endless war
Nothing more than a cry in the dark but we continue onward.
Dragged into these catacombs, forgotten; I still move forward
Chasing a distant skyline. Tell me this, how far is too far?
Something blocks the way back leaving me with one choice.
I must delve the dark if I want to never see memories erase.
After a long and tiring journey I find myself somewhere between, between where dreams are born and choices are made. The events of my life stand in front of me like an illusion of endless mirrors but I know better. Every choice I wrought to life with my callous, shaking hands remains reminiscent of who I am. My heart beats and I listen to the melody because that’s life. Those steps I follow in stride toward a new tomorrow echo in my ears still.
Although the concept of days ends, I chase after the dawn even now. I rejoice in the willingness to continue. Why do I hold so dearly to hope like it’s instinct? My sense of self remains but there’s something off. The mirror keeps me lost between dawn and dusk. What ifs in life given brilliant illumination in the form of a mirror.
Anger, the sensation of rushing blood and chemicals, tells me I can never be those what ifs the mirror shows. I touch the smooth surface. The lives better and worse feel absent of all heart. Senseless existences could never comprehend existing. What comes of me if I accept these false lives? People should sacrifice some for greater things. I can’t do that even if it’s the right thing because all I understand is what I’ve done. There’s no going back.
I shatter the mirror with my bare fists. The glass digs deep into my knuckles, blood drips from the cuts, and a plume of glass fragments and dust remains. My rejection of possible outcomes only solidifies when I can no longer see the paths. I step on every fragment reflecting a happier me that could never be. Maybe a different me takes the other paths but I never will. Time only allows a single path. There’s a higher consciousness where I can see every option, know everything, and be a better man.
The question remains:
Will I still be me when I reach that point?