Unfiltered Utopia. That was the life that cursed us. With a government harvesting a cabinet of lies, a lover stoking the fire of tainted infidelities, and parents telling shivering infants it would be okay - the world decided to be folded. Cruelty inward, it burned, and loudly outward it hissed. The trees began to droop a little lower, and the sky turned a murky, dirty blue. The smell of a fresh loaf of bread oozed a metallic odor, and the taste of all things now bitter. Thought’s once silenced and bit on the end of tongues - rung truer than church bells. And it wasn’t his order or hers. It was theirs—the ones above or below. Or perhaps between, sitting beside us with fragile breaths and sun fingers. The world woke up and spoke the truth.
“Miles,” I found myself turning towards him. The man whose life I once thought I knew, whose thoughts I once dreamed of, “I don’t feel in love with you today.”
Miles, with his manageable brown hair and kiwifruit eyes, held a tight expression, “I know, I feel the same. Since the Honest Day, I don’t think I feel much of anything anymore.” He looked down as he spoke. His truth poured like harsh whiskey into the glass we found ourselves sharing.
The Honest Day donned the new world order. The truth of all things spread over the world like butter on bread. First, every government secret. From assassinations to aliens to the hidden ingredient in controlling all men, women, and children. Everything was an open book if one dared open the door. A fragile society that had demanded truth, who had stomped furiously with heavy feet and raised hairs, suffered now. The very same institution that found themselves crumbling under the weight that the reality now bore. I had known that some things should always remain a secret, that words spoken weren’t always words thought with logic. That sadness flows like the Mile, and happiness is as fleeting as a child’s youth. But a world unfiltered? It was not the world we had once prayed befall us.
Miles, who I once thought my heart couldn’t swell enough for, told of thoughts deep within the dark shadows. So many I began to write them down, to remind myself just exactly how the clock of him ticks. And more than anything, I wish I could be naive in his arms. To sleep in the warm embrace of the walls our minds offered. To kiss his lips without the rope tightening my hands, to open my heart for love to swim like jellyfish. But we now slept like soldiers of war, opened-eyed foes with polished weapons. The more I knew about Miles, the less I knew him. And the more I spoke my truth, the more I saw the love diminishing into a distant burning candle.
With eyes looming and heavy, Miles and I find ourselves looking through each other. With eyes that meet in equal pain but a gaze that looks beyond and past. Beyond, into the hazy fields of the days ahead - where the sunset’s hues grew blurry and disfigured.
As I grab my keys and leave my once lover in silence, I know that any word further spoken would forgo more breaking. And I know that the moon is full and round, and the swell of the sea was threatening, and Miles couldn’t hear another roaring truth. So I did what we often found ourselves doing in times of hurt, and I made a lonely exit towards my car.
My hands shook against the wheel, something I found comfort in the hollow hush of my mind. If I had become a cold predator, one carved from the knowledge of all things that could hurt me, at least my physical body still held shock. At least somewhere in myself, I lacked a sense of control.
Shadows ran alongside my wheels on the empty streets of my town. Homes of surviving people stood boarded tightly, with closed blinds and closed doors. Yet, open minds cried loudly. Some people thrived in a direct bearing world, while others lived in the tears of solitude. I can’t blame those who wish for silence. I find myself without a voice, without remembering to speak for fear of what I will say. The unlucky people rid themselves of the burden the world had become. They had fallen without screams and mercy. I sometimes found myself sitting and wishing for the courage to follow me through.
Empty parks and empty playgrounds. A broken flower corpse and a broken library. Everything I saw carved more and more happiness out of my chest till I could feel the gaping hole breathing. I knew Miles back home would be sitting on the bed, with the quietest of tears making snail tracks on his cheeks. And I wish I could care if I knew he could muster the same. But the truth of him told of honest lies.
I don’t know the future. For it has become a cold stranger to me. All my dreams were crushed under the boot of those who told me - there was no hope in this life. And that any future was one to wait for till death hears a cry and comes sweeping down. Dressed in black and truly holy, I had never welcomed his attire so much.
With an absent mind, I now find myself on the mountain lookout to where friends lay below. The sun, with all its sadness, was hidden away once more. I sigh deeply and sigh again. Who knew the truth could be so painful? Who knew it would tear us apart? A world without mystery was no world at all. A dying hope, a dying humanity. Why would God allow such misery?
As I reverse closer to the sinking mountainside, I start my engine with sure hands. I cage my eyes with final words and locks and find my courage waiting. For now, at last, I will speak the absolute truth. And let myself descend.