Friday, March 8, 2013

Whispers of the Human Mind

…If we end up being pessimistic we will become cynical, which is one step away from paralysis.

Black, craggy stone curled upward on either side. There was a sheen to it and the crags were all razor sharp; like the scales of some dreadful, long-dead beast that might have breathed fire or eaten people whole.
The round opening, that the walls curved up around, looked out on miles and miles of faded green and yellow marsh. Thick, gray spirals of smoke drifted listlessly skyward. The stagnant pools far below were black as pitch, filled with the decaying remnants leaves.

Could you stand a look in the mirror?
Would you see what I see from the look back?
How utter joy is in your smile.
But the center of your eye is empty black.

A young man stood before the window. His poise was rigid, his eyes drank in the scene with cold detachment. He wore black. The wind was toying with his hair.
"Hello there!" came a voice behind him. "Enjoying the view?"
"A number of cliched replies come to mind…"
"Try one. See if it gets us anywhere."
"Hmph. What are you doing here, John?"
The other young man leaned against the frame of the opening, careful not to cut himself on the crags. He wore a vest that glittered with golden highlights. "That could work, but my name's not John."
The other sighed and looked at him. "You're the one that started this charade."
"I was expecting you to say something more along the lines of, 'Maybe, but not with you interrupting.'"
"That would have been openly nasty."
"Yes, and openly nasty you cannot be."
This brought a cold smile to the other's lips. "'By the pricking of my thumb, something ironic this ways comes.' Why do you have an umbrella?"
"Just in case. And I know someone once said, 'never trust a man with an umbrella,' but I say, 'fiddle-sticks.'"
"Someone else once said, 'Poets have been strangely silent on the subject of cheese,' but the quote is no more revealing than it is true."
"…You're muddying the waters."
"That's what I'm studying; trying to write a scene."
The boy in gold touched his nose with the tip of his umbrella. "You missed your chance to say something witty about mud, water, rain, and my umbrella."
"Look, I didn't ask you to bother me, okay?"
"So, you're asking me to leave?"
The man in black rubbed his temple. "State the implied and the unrealistic, why don't you?"
"All I'm trying to do is draw you out. Or is that impossible without an 'I-told-you-so,' moment?"
"If I hold forth on something will you leave me be?"
"Do, and we'll see! Respectively, of course."
"Alright. If one finds oneself studying Emerson, they will inevitably end up with either sore eyes or a sore brain. It depends on whether they're studying the individual or his work."
"How disparing and sweeping. What if someone likes Emerson?"
"And some people like taking drugs to make their world more colorful."
"Then what you're attacking is the quality of his work?"
"His drivel you mean. And you asked for it."
"I did, but you didn't deliver. You're quip is too general to attack and too vague to be of any use. It's feel-good, cynical gibberish. It's cute."
"Won't you walk a little faster,
Said Yeats to a gnome.
There's a mathematician close behind us,
And I think he's running home."
The boy in gold popped his umbrella open just in time for a stream of muddy water to come pouring down on it. "And some people called me sheltered. …Stating the obvious and realistic."
The other didn't reply. He was back to gazing out the window. Shaking out his umbrella the boy started away. "Thanks, you've proven my point."
The man in black looked around at him. "At the risk of being called mad? You're bold, fool!"
"No, I'm alive."
And with that, he waltzed off, in a direction the empty, black pupils of the other couldn't fathom.