The Drifter – Part 1

I’m a drifter, traveling from place to place – leaving one for another when boredom sets in. I have seen the world and after awhile it all started to look the same – until I drifted too far. This place was one I had never been before. I couldn’t figure out where I was and leaving was unattainable, no matter how hard I tried.

The city was dreary with brick walls all around it – having no recollection of ever passing through any gates upon my entry, as a matter of fact I don’t remember how I got to the city.

My last destination still haunted my memories, with beauty encompassing the landscape, a forest leading up to the mountains and ending at the beach, but this peculiar feeling of not being aware of my arrival disturbed me. A thick blanket of fog coated the sky obstructing my vision. It kept a clean coat of mist upon my person not to mention my belongings. So thick that it never left day in or day out it stayed convoluting my sense of time – how long have I been here?

There was the feeling of a big city such as Paris or New York but there is no life in this city, as if a eternal slumber took hold and never woke up -no one walked the streets, no store fronts manned with the armies of store clerks on the front lines of customer satisfaction, no buses, no cars, no bikes, no squirrels, no police patrolling the beat -not even a leaf on the trees leaping, as if wanting to escape into the heavens, but still I sensed activity.

No life forms visible to these eyes, a endless search pursued for a exit, life, death, something to bring reality back into the picture. It didn’t take long for my memory banks to map out the whole place, every empty store – every empty apartment -every empty bar that I hoped to find a drinking buddy -still I turned up nothing.

My soul had succumbed to madness –

how could this town be full of activity with nothing to show for it! A whole city with only my lonely soul strutting down the street.

Fatigue set in without food, without water, with-out companions, so I made my way towards what seemed to the residential part of town. A extremely large house stuck out of the cookie cutter culture that had followed its erection a few generations later.

So I thought I would take this opportunity to have what I didn’t have before. After opening the large double doors I walked through the verandah, up the stairway, and into what appeared to be the master bedroom -without a bed -as a drifter I was prepared for this -my backpack, the home on my back, was a fully functional bag of tricks.

I pulled out my sleeping bag and mat, laid down, and while falling into sleep – I dreamt of all the places I’d been, the people I met, every thought in my head was aimed at trying to forget where I was.

The inevitable came -I woke up. What was I going to do now, what reason do I have to wake up. As I roll over the sheets, tangled up in a mess, are pulled from my body as I slid off my bed.

Standing up I stretch and descend the stairs where breakfast is waiting for me in the dining room. Some one spent a long time preparing it and for that I am thankful. After I finish eating I say goodbye, kiss my wife, and leave for yet another day at the grindstone.

As I walked down the sidewalk towards the garage I couldn’t help feeling something was different. I get in my car, start it up, and pull down the driveway -as I backed up into the street I shifted into drive and raced on down towards the interstate -I pulled out off the on ramp and cut off some jerk who flips me off. The rat pursues to challenge me to a drag race – we speed down the road weaving in and out of every poor soul who follows the guidelines, the ever present road signs controlling the very movements set forth by the feet of society.

An old lady driving 45 miles per hour in this fast lane that acts as a trap for those who feel that they should be on nascar’s payroll, a spider web with the big red and blue -eight donut beast -sitting in the median waiting for its prey to fly by without noticing its sly parking job. The old lady, slowing me down as the rat finds himself trapped in the web.

I sit back and relax into the sonic vibrations penetrating the wax of the drums resting in my inner ear -a song that has been ingrained into every fiber of my being, making me oblivious to the stop and go traffic that has since clogged the drain leading down the pipes of the inner-city -downtown of consumerism -elimination central.

So I Pull out that little cardboard box of death and inhale my way back past the realm of annoyance -with my window freshly rolled down I start to breathe the breath of my artificial horse.

The everyday madness pursues, as my daily schedule unfolds, but the moment I dread the most is starting to fly at me faster than a airplane heading straight towards the ground -But wait a minute? Can I think that? Should I hide my box cutter and run for the hills? Paranoia sets in as I feel my mind is being watched, probed by the secretary of homeland security.

Finally arriving, I pull up in the parking lot of that citadel protecting the void of 9 to 5 monday through friday and supplying me with those handy little pieces of life that once made up the forests of this world but now I trade for everything that enters my mouth or fills my living room with mind numbing entertainment.

So I walk through those glass doors, past the receptionist (trying to avoid small talk I look the other way) I sink down into my little gray cubicle, turn on my auxiliary brain, and proceed to work.

Where am I?

Where am I?

this emptiness is driving me mad-

where am I?

oh ——

I am here again

– just a dream I suppose –

– a dream of dreams –

a nightmare of hope lifting me up past the surface into the sea of life dripping across the ocean’s bed in a unified motion of single drops – each with its own purpose – its own direction, but why cannot I breach the sea on my own, why cannot I reach the shore as I drown in this unpleasant place.

Life still fills my breath, but this place seems to drain it from my lungs, I reach around searching for my backpack in the darkness of this room, feeling its presence I follow the teeth of the zipper to the top and pull it open, forcing my way past shirts and smelly socks I find my flashlight. With a faint beam I search around the room. walking over to the window I pull the blinds to find what little light that breaks through the fog illuminating the room (if you want to call it that)

What must I do in this situation,

no escape,

no subsistence,

no salvation,

– wait

what is that

a light breaking the fog

cutting through the precipitation like a knife through butter with a slice of light putting a single building on display as if it were some childhood theater arts student frozen in a spotlight.

But what does this mean, Am I to search this building out and find what ever lurks there, to find my death, to find my life, to find a exit to this place forsaken by whatever has sent me here, or is it a trap, a portal into some vortex that will suck me into a dimension far worse than this. Whatever it may be I must feed my catlike curiosity as I starve for the culmination of this existence.

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