The Voices Inside

Where am I? Nothing is clear. True. Who? What? Why? Buzzards flying inside the etches of my mind. Mind. I have a brain. Inside my head. A head. It’s tilted now. My gaze is blackened, senses are stripped. Staring at a loose floorboard, long forgotten.
“There is no floorboard, no mind.”
The sound permeates the heavy air. I turn to see who is there. No one. I move back. I observe the broken wood, the chips of old, blue paint and metallic nails spread across the floor. A hard pressure now reveals itself: the sickly hard smell of wood and labor. Eyes sting with a sharp pain. Eyes. I have them. They are reddened now. Now I’m aware of the tears: hot liquid pours down my face. Streams of unhappiness form from the empty sockets and flows downriver, from the springs behind by retina to the edge where the river falls over the edge. Forever.
I am not a floating head. I see the arms, reaching for purpose long fleeted. Hands now form; I feel the small fingertips digging into my hair, the unkempt brush that grows down like a garden long abandoned by its creator, waiting for the last flower to die away.
Legs. I see the legs that bend and touch the hard ground. I am sitting, how long? Minutes? Hours? Days? Months? Years? I don’t know. A century has gone by and yet only a second.
“There is no time. None. Only me.”
What? What is it? What is all of this? I want to see what is here, and feel something familiar. All I see are shattered dreams, unfulfilled desires, and broken promises. Sadness and regret hangs in the air. I want more now.
“This is all there is. Nothing more.”
I feel them. The buzzards are inside my mind. Picking apart reason. Truths torn like flesh of a predator’s conquest, I hear a banging now. Bang, Bang, Bang. I hear the screams. Pleading Begging. Names, places and memories. I want to see them, to embrace that warm light of familiarity. But my gaze remains blackened, senses are stripped. No floorboard, no chips of paint or metal, no streams of sticky liquid, and no abandoned garden. Another century, another second.
“There is no time, none. Only me.”
I now lift my head. That’s what it’s called, and I see myself. But it is not me.
The eyes are full of life, filled with reason and soulful. The hair, the garden, is a tamed wilderness, and the flowers are in full bloom. The arms dig into the pockets, protected from the elements. Legs stand promptly, floating on a soft surface. My face contorts into an ugly display. Eyes wide, nostrils up, mouth like an upside down rainbow. The lips part, white teeth shining and blinding me.
Behind him stands an army of faces. Friends, family, neighbors, acquaintances. They stand there, beaming towards me. I stand up now, and I see myself offering a hand. How long does it take to life my arm up? It takes millennia. I wish to take his hand. My hand. I wish to join him, them, in that paradise, to feel the warmth of love. To break from this nightmare.
“There is no you, no army of faces, only me.”
My fingers reach out. Closer. Closer. I touch the glass………





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