Life as a sequence of pictures (1)

I believe my life is beautiful.

This is not subjective, because I have no time to step back and look at it. As one who has studied physics thoroughly, I understand that stepping back from my life would mean affecting it to the point where I would be looking at something completely different than before.

Life is not a sequence of pictures, where you have time, between two consecutive scenes, to breathe and have a little cigarette and a cup of tea, and ask yourself if it was a nice picture or a bad one. I’m sorry, but it’s not.

I wake up one day and I have breakfast. I don’t utter a single word and I nod politely at people who speak to me. I drink my hot cup of tea and in my mind a cello sonata joins the gentle steam of fine Ceylon. But nobody can hear it. Even I have heard it only once and it’s not the sonata, it’s the moment that brings back the music now. I walk without aim, drawn to places that cause me pain and memory of loss. I revel in that pain and feel the shivers that bear tears. I smile, the amused face of a jester laughing at his own bells. Then, with my eyes closed, I cut the movie and patch in some scenes that happened there. And my arms almost touch and my lips almost kiss, and my nose almost smells and my mind almost believes. In the back of my head, the young man with a torn robe and blood on his hands and his forehead yells in desperation, held back by two heavy troopers. „Live!!!! Tomorrow is another day, remember????!! Your own litany, your own belief!! Live, there’s a chance, as long as you live!!! I beg you! Live! It’s not too late, it’s not lost!!! I’ve always helped you, please, please, live – do just this for me!!!”

I stop on the spot where it all started. I can see from here the door where she came from, the steps she took, the leaves that fell around her, the trees that shadowed her walk, the clear sky above the city with two and a half million souls.

And from there I run. At the end of my run there is the Roman atrium with a large bath, filled with hot water, with petals of flowers in it. On the marble edge, there is a white silk patch with a silver smooth dagger on it, that I will use to let go. And there will be thousands of petals in the hot water, and steam above the infinity of blood below.

And the young man will leave me, in tears, cold and sad.

Or I will run to a dark corner or to a shoulder and I will cry my life out and then I will leave all behind, forget all about it and start a new life, before putting an end to anything.

I wake up one day and I take the large picture near my bed and smash it against the wall, then I pick up the pieces, cutting my fingers in the glass shards, and I contract my body as a drug addict or a sick drunken man, trying to squeeze a pair of tears. And I can’t. Oh, jolly – now these are gone too.

I smile at everyone and have a hearty breakfast, joking about politics and football. Why on Earth would I do that – oh, because I can! It’s my nature. Not very human, but when it comes to existence, who’s picky?

Then I get in the car and I drive like a scaredy cat, 30 miles per hour top, until I reach the point of no return. Manitou was sleeping in my mind and I didn’t want to wake Him until I was way gone.

This apache goes to war. This apache has nothing to win, but has a life to spare. Nothing left to do with it. No more buffaloes to chase, no more wolves to tame, no more mustangs to ride, no more plains, no more forests. Just the empty spot behind twenty four ribs and steel all around him. There’s no death wish chasing this apache. Just – well, his life has slowly left him, gone to another body, along with the medicine bag and all the other trinkets: love, pain, happiness, fear, small effigies of children, will and strength. This apache has been left broken, with Manitou sleeping inside his mind.

I can feel the car, the pistons pumping gaseous explosions and adrenaline, the pivot supported on my hand and the asphalt, the gears, the fuel line drawing fire from my stomach, with the burning butterflies.

And it reaches the 5200RPM and the fifth gear clicks smoothly into place. And the car shrieks as the wheels leave the asphalt for a split second, at the tunnel entrance. Then the first curve comes and the car speeds through, then the second curve comes and time slows, while drops of morning dew from the garden leave the car, torn, abandoned. Then bits of steel and silver compose the pastel, on the gray concrete background, and the windshield shatters in a million pieces, as a giant flower blooming, as a miniature replica of the Universe expanding.

Or maybe a silent hand moves a millimeter of the wheel and time doesn’t slow anymore. Time rushes ahead, with the speeding car and the apache cries inside, having finally found a new stream of tears, deep underground, under the mask of war and the mask of the hunter and the mask of the victorious and the mask of the defeated and the mask of the dead.

Standing at the edge of the precipice, with a direction for falling and a direction for watching the miracle of this world.


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