The Hole

I

I once wrote about death being like a large hole, out in the middle of some lost desert. The hole seemed to have no bottom, and could have led to anywhere. Some were pushed into the hole, others dragged, and a few actually dove in headfirst. Whatever the case, the hole was every human’s final destination.

I planned on doing a backflip into the hole, saluting, with  middle fingers raised, the poor bastards hanging on to the hole’s edge by their frail hands— corroded by the wind and sand of the desert— scared of forever falling. Scared of impact.

 

II

My fixation on the hole tainted my journey there, and consumed my very existence. I wanted to see the hole; I wanted to experience the perpetual freefall. Or the impact.

I left my possessions to the life in which I felt trapped, and took off sprinting through the desert. Voices that begged me to stay were lost in the sandstorm— whether carried off in the ceaseless wind or obstructed by the sand in my ears I’ll never know.

 

III

I ran until my lungs were on the brink of collapse and the sand had collected in my eyes, rendering me blind. Shielding my face with my forearm, I inhaled deeply, but was forced to spit out mud.

Lost and alone in the desert, I sat and wept. It was then that you found me. Or perhaps I who found you— though neither of us can remember.

You were crying as well, and the wind shifted to carry the sound of sobbing through ears packed with dirt. We crawled towards one another, finding solace from the storm in each other’s arms, and we cried until the wind died and the sun warmed our dirty bodies. Then we picked one another up off the ground, dusted ourselves off, and walked together in no particular direction.

 

IV

We were astounded at the sheer number of people moving through the desert, congregating towards the hole. We could tell some of them had been preparing for the hole all their lives; their entire life revolving around what lie at the hole’s bottom. We heard promises of paradise at the bottom for those who earned it— but I think that was only a rumor to ease the fear that came with not knowing. We heard warnings of eternal fire at the bottom for those who did not earn paradise— but I think that was only to scare people into belief.

We decided we were just happy to be together on our journey to the hole, and that what was actually at the bottom of that dammed thing wasn’t that important after all.

 

V

While lying on the sand with you, someone else caught my eye. They were sprinting furiously towards the hole.

I screamed for them to stopped— yelled until my lungs bled not to go alone— begged for them to listen.

I knew they couldn’t hear me.