I’ve been wrong too many times not to talk about it. As we speak, I don’t know how deep I am beneath the house that hosts the family man, the successful writer, someone taking a chance, top of the class. Stylistic master. Working towards his doctorate. The coveted title. As his hero before him. His dad. We can still say that. God, the world that we live in. The waves that we crash through. The way they can split beds. The way they can keep us out of sight and earshot. I’m falling lower every day, and all I’m asking for is kindness. Unless this is fake depression. I’m worried about the consequences. I’d left the gas tank open on the way home. “Something’s really seems wrong with my brain,” I’m saying. All the baby’s tumbles. High chair, over and over, no helmet. Knight fight: me vs. the world. Lord and master. King and savior. The woods have me in their grip. Clawlike trees surround me. There is nothing else. This is death and it’s going to be long. It’s going to be cold. It’s going to be terrifying. It’s just going to keep getting worse. You’ll stumble. Fall in a river. Freeze. Starve. Dehydrate. Be poisoned. But you’re not going down in your grandpa’s bed. Cars are whizzing by at a hundred miles an hour. All of life’s terrible energy is looking for a place to collect, and I’m attractive. Wearing my wife on my sleeve. The fruit of our loins dangling before the hungry. The flashing palpitations from the phone finally persuade us to ask my parents for a primary care physician.
The night gets colder. My wife is getting more accusatory. Everybody’s working for the weekend. Shit’s being thrown from the stands. More power to you. But I’m standing up, because I’m famous, and I’m on the case. My face is shaved––again, today; up-kept. Staying sharp.
“You came at the wrong time, Brownson.” says the voice behind the mirror. “The city is false. We’re in the cold. Keep your eyes open. There’s no chance for survival.”
The aloneness returns. My delusions fade. I’m trying to remember that I am an immortal child of God, but my stomach hurts, and I’m having trouble remembering my wife’s name.