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The New Inferno
Canto The First:
“Existence well what does it matter?
I exist on the best terms I can.
The past is now part of my future,
The present is well out of hand.”
Heart and Soul
Call me whatever you will, couldn’t care less really. This isn’t a tale of adventurous bewilderment or gloomy penetration into the cavernous depths of the mind, this is no story of eastern ships swaying through waves or northern echoes of battling chants whilst two waves of iron intend clashing and blood, this is no story of knights riding moonlights and dawns to golden tresses hanging from a tower, no modern romanticism intended, no horror or adventure, just fiction I guess, in fact, I’m not sure what this is.
Today on the eve of independence, not mine, but of a whole nation I sit in a weary old couch with the remote attached to my sweaty hand and my legs idly put over a wooden bench, my other hand holding a cigarette that every now and then touches my lips. My eyes bewildered by the traveling images. At the moment I was for this not for anything else, but this. Would this country’s high personalities be proud of this magnificence residing within me and my notion of independence, and the glorious time I give to it? How would all those eminences of liberty, who crossed mountains and fought the foreign guns of oppression and dominance, take this impression of me, here spending independence on a room watching tellie? How would those who gave their blood and freedom for mine react to this form of tribute towards them? Right now… I don’t care.
A last view to the landscape of Macclesfield and the credits begin to roll: Sam Riley, Anton Corbjin….The glass half empty of coke and expectation was dangling fearfully from the couch’s arms. I stretch the arms, my arms, into a long celebration of slumbering joy; I come into consciousness after the ritual and stand up, the shape of my back carved on the couch. I press the red figure and the screen evolves to a pitch-black silence that spreads. I turn off the lamp and go down the hallway. I go tenderly and sliding up the stairs, I wallow all the way to my room and I shut the door slowly and most carefully behind me. They are all sleeping, all dreaming. For a second I stood there, my ears trying to listen something beyond silence. But I couldn’t hear their dreams, no drowned forms agonizing, no blind man at sea, no old ladies rubbing their noses on other’s business. Just me, the album, a couple of books and the melody of temporal peace broken by the Shadowplay.
I drift into the curtains of my window, perhaps a time or two I flutter over the edge but no falling thoughts overcome. My existence, a mockery and a bluff, who could exist in such a way? My existence is the derived of a daily basis of hopeless day-dream and dream, of the agitation of limbs, mental limbs, when I behold fake visions of unnamed distances and traced a thousand miles though come to a strange closeness. As I said (though I haven’t) my existence is in itself pathetic, I grasp tightly to the most diminutive detail of literary excitement, the powerful riff of a song, perhaps a lost lyricism or a sudden movement, the first four verses of Auguries of Innocence by William Blake, Wordsworth, Yeats, the passing of light to half-light then blue, inevitably blue, caressing dead branches where the phantoms of leaves still loaf, reminding the fall, a lamppost, the second from the corner, enthralled and entangled with those dead fingers and the hazy struck of midnight or maybe the ninth bell that transport my being to the shores of the Thames while I await the morning tide to sail whilst the story flows on an on; all of these make me leap, not the rainbow, don’t get me wrong I leap in natural beauty as well: the butter-toffee river side with the white vessels crossing the spumes, a northern wind blowing through the lakes on a freezing December morning, my fingers cold and deadened, my nostrils throwing vapors, the mystifying riddles left and swirling at some random twilight, the marble echoes of buildings and the chimes of running trains leaving the metallic symphony of Indian rail roads. As I said, I am pathetic.
The city is dead. I think so. I now so. The clock says ten past two in the morning. The record still playing like a foreign whisper, Joy Division. Rapid the black and white frames come and go, Control had left me like floating on another universe, a line or two stuck to my mind, Ian pulling the rope, a clash of metal, Atmosphere and smoke gliding swart on another grey and dull Macclesfield morn: “Existence, well, what does it matter?” I shake off the image from my head and go back into the yellowish page, a young rascal leading an old mad Lama throwing prayers here and there and asking about some river and a red bull, a woman at last free roaming independently her life among the paths of Paris, 1929, a contract to preserve the untimely freedom through long bondages of far away communication and sincerity, the long silences and philosophical debates of him, she’d rather keep off, just listen, she’s not that fast to response all those cannon fire of idealistic battle that will end with the shattering of one’s principles, or the perseverance of both. The book closed automatically and I melt myself with the blankets.
Will I ever be able to exclaim “Freedom at last!”? Will I ever escape this miserable reality that abides me and imprisons me to long nights of soliloquies about a future freedom? I make hold of the nearest pen and go looking for diary I begun some months ago with the aim of writing all thoughts philosophical, existentialist, suicidal, joyful and whatever else a man may think putting away all related to affection. The ink dribbles and I find myself drawing curves and lines that turn up to be words and phrases, sometimes even rhymes, but those I keep somewhere else.
The world lost. The world shattered. Lo! No light twains through the wooden shield of the window. The blue and red and silver and golden blankets mingle all in one, the thousand books whirl into a twirl to be hurled onto a starry constellation. The lamp fades away, the music fades away, “don’t walk away in silence…” A flash of black and white, a trail of smoke from his mouth, “in silence…”
Canto The Second:
The Dark Woods
“But I could only stare in disbelief as the crowds all left.”
The funeral pyres rouse slowly from the grim darkness, rock over rock they built to the sky, that half sphere of black wings. I found myself lost and embraced by this darkness, my chest suffocated, my breathing pausing at every step given with a huge amount of hesitation. I was lost and desperate. Gloomy eyes fixed onto me. I began walking taking every step with consideration and trying to come aware of my surroundings. Tall buildings at my sides and shadows crouching and grasping my feet at every lamppost past and gone, an odor of death, a scent of death lingering. I felt the fortifications drawing nearer and nearer like coffin’s walls. A requiem made of this hushed situation. The Introitus first, then the Dies Irae and the world burning, the Heavens in ashes descending and all deepened. I saw it all happen. The Hammer of Justice fell with a large batter and Hell’s doors were opened, the doors of perception were cleansed as said by the Prophet. I entered, I don’t know how, but that I did im pretty damn sure. I knew it the instant I dropped my eyes to a street sign that awfully read Charing Cross Road.
The street went winding like a rough and stern gathering of cobblestones and the left over’s of civilization. I proposed myself to reach the shores of Charing Cross and started the march again.
My sight was heavy, not with weeping but with dreamy figures of slumber. I wished for an opened Café, and swiftly my hopes were overthrown. Upon my left there was a small shabby looking building conformed of several apartments made for the budget probably of opium eaters or heroin addicts or dealers, perhaps in the next alley there’ll be some man in black waiting, but I didn’t want to venture myself to it. The door was shattered into splinters and on the blank space where the number should be was now a rusty brown stain. My intention, being to have an upper look of the city, drove me to push the door with very much caution. The sound of tarnished metal. “Anybody there?” I asked to the nothingness and the solid obscurity. No reply, I asked once more and only the echo responded “…body there…ere?”
Armed of security I entered. The smell of rotten food and again death shook my senses and left my head to a dizzy state. Some cans slept on the dust-shroud of the floor. I pushed myself further ahead and was able to trace a staircase from the dimness. The moonlight filtered from a little hole on the roof and dust spirals danced in and out of the silver bound. I stared for at least ten seconds unblinking to this image. Beauty in Hell, who could have said it! I slapped my face kindly to keep the flame burning, didn’t want to doze up in this miserable place all alone. I approached the stairs and set foot on the very first step and the first shadow emerged from Erebus’s womb. “Well, ‘ello old chap” a flicker of sharp iron and I backed off. “So, what’s such a tempting piece of flesh doin’ in such a bad neighborhood?” he gave a step and his face was swarmed with moonlight. He was a black man. His expression was of weariness and the ages of time were portrayed on it. He looked as a cliff that had been beaten by the sea for hundreds of years, that sands and storms had trampled without mercy, and had seen the earth rambling and shaking furiously but still remained strong and daring. Another man came. Not a flicker of iron but of golden tresses and blue eyed stare. His features seemed more kind but his eyes were drenched with savage nature and a killing instinct. “What’s the whole racket man?” he asked, his voice was angelical, a string of seraphic harp. “Look wha’ I found down ‘ere” the black man answered pointing throatily his knife between my eyes. The blond one stared and his look widened. “Oi! Luppy C’mere now!” the blond man howled upstairs. The noise of steps and a woman turned up. “What’s the matter Leon?” her eyes caught my whole attention, grey and silver seemed to blend into them, eternity found there. Her figure was the resemblance of a Greek goddess, the incarnation of Selene. I was Endymion. The silver threats of moonlight came from her not from the higher orb, she was the moon, she was all splendor and fragrant with nightly dew. “Hey! What ye looking at?” she screamed violently noticing my foolish contemplation. “Let’s get him mate” the black man said in an air of wanting-to-be-known confidentiality. The three phantoms came closer and closer, the blade as well. Leon moved fast as a leopard to my right and got himself behind me. I was trapped. I could only wait for it to come.
A loud bang from my behind. A voice of thunderous portent made my ears quaver. “FUCK OFF!”
First a touch of dread and terror flooded their eyes. The panther dropped the blade. The lion ran on to the other side to join the other spirits of fright. The she-wolf no longer slumbered in beauty, no, she basically panicked in it. They shared looks among themselves and in an instant they had it all solved and agreed: The shadows made flight and disappeared from the darkness to leave the spiral of particles to dance by themselves. I saw their souls linger a little longer before leaving the spot where they stood a second ere.
“You all right?” said the hoarse voice from my back. I turned very slowly and caught a glimpse of moonlight trespassing from his sides. I stared at him.
A flare of two saucer-like blue eyes were looking at me, I felt them examine every inch of my mind, opening every wardrobe and thought and unveiling all secrets. I could almost see myself through them, but lowered my sight. On his lips a smoke was swinging and its cords of grey ascended ‘til they twined with the dance of dust. A slight smile dripped from them. His coal black hair contrasted with the pale rays of moon. He had a dark brown overcoat and both his hands in its pockets. He couldn’t be….
Canto The Third
“I've been waiting for a guide to come and take me by the hand.”
“Ian” he said kindly pulling the smoke out of his lips and stretching his right hand towards me whilst drawing a warm smile. Stammered, overwhelmed, perhaps excited, I grasped tightly his cold-gripping hand and wondered my name for a moment then pronounced it.
“Pleased to meet you mate, now let’s get you outta here, this is the last place you wanna be, believe me. You were lucky I was around, nice meal you would’ve turned out to be. Those lads are fucking mental.”
Manchester accent still in, as clear as the grey smoke of the factory-towers in the northland, the black dawn of the hills all along the industrial yards of the city.
HERE ENDETH "THE NEW INFERNO"
TOO LAZY FOR COMPLETION