There are people here with coals in their eyes, flat and lifeless and gleaming with the cold mineral spikeshine of the unsane. Here they raise their arms to you in a mindless benediction, their voices rising in tandem in the cry of unshaking, of undoing, of Not.
Here crawls the waste and riot, slow and cumbersome at times, dense and caroming at others. The concrete dies beneath a fathomless weight of None, tangled in the shuddering, bleeding shroud of Never and gasping its cold wet breath against the mouth of Why.
There is no reason here, and that is the only reason. They walk like disease, meandering with limbs too loose and mouths too slack, their mineral eyes twitching in response to only the brightest and most distracting, perpetual magpies with a hunger as deep as it is thoughtless to possess, to contain, to control.
There is no room for reason here, where the boards of old buildings drive men into the arms of madness, great and sweeping madness with a breath that stinks of lost homes and children burnt to cinders.
There is no reason for safety here, where the streetlights play across the hands of men to look like guns, to look like knives, to look like End.
We here are its prisoners, trapped and writhing beneath, shackled by our half-hazy memories of a time before all of this, before all of Those. We here are its punch line, kicking into the gut of something too old to cry and too alive to feel relief.
We here are the remnants of what was and never will be again, left broken and stripped of all but dignity, all but loyalty. When ideals are shattered and left as caltrops, when worlds collide and commiserate to become each other, whatever is left is core.
Beware the Broken Ones, for they bring the good medicine that will destroy you, and the desolation they cause is life.
Ahren Heisermann is a bone-hoarding, bourbon loving cryptid living somewhere in Upstate NY with a few good friends and a lot of bad ideas.
A Song for Ahren