Inspired by “Watchtower Without Ladder” by Hawk Alfredson

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Conceptualize a solitary existence: we turn left off the main road, and drive through a red, metal gate. Wisps of silt rise to tickle the windows and envelop the tires as the car leans into an obscure, curvaceous, dirt path. A few miles in, we see it: an indistinct house peeking through the trees. It is unnerving to think that we don’t consider the idea that the people living in these remote quarters may be forced to stay because they are prisoners to an oppressive, draconian force, whether it be psychological, economic, or political.

The orange-sheathed man sits, the ashen demon looming above, on his checkered floor, seemingly expressionless, internally crestfallen. Surely he does not wish to be alone. His mind fabricates the idea that there is no escape, that he is forever enclosed in this isolated, perverted box. His fear of the world that lies beyond the box is heightened by the menacing demon, which sticks its grotesque, pointed fingers out and prods him to the point of lunacy. He remains silent, not muttering a word, as no one will hear him––or so he believes.

My zeal is awakened as inaction and delusion swallow him and I read his final, sober thoughts:

“Save yourself. Unlock this cage and claim your sovereignty.” Thank you, orange-sheathed man. Your future will not be mine.





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