Worm it is, all the way to the core. Jovial for a ride, highway to greed. The quickening drum of certainty poisoning the seeds, swept over the garden into the abyss.
Jealousy's making me behaving cordially: as a way to appreciate your youthful idiocy; a mirror to reflect on my own supremacy- how far I've come & what lays beneath. Yes, it's ego. Can you separate heart from its beats? Of course it can be silenced but that would mean I've made a mistake. It takes all my strength to hold in this silent scream. Yet, you are the one that I pity.
I hoard my sufferings like it's a special property. Suspicious of the ones who try to lighten it. Only the suffering of others grounds me which is why I prefer ruins over happiness.
My heart plays game with me, it comes and goes as it please. There's sunshine, there's rain, It longs to stay in the cave. It never grew up is what I believe, choked with blood of self-pity. Brain tries to manage the scene, "Whatever happened!" it exclaims. The beats long to go flat & fly. It whispers tales of the deep. It says life is just a trick distorted image between blinks. There's a game with no name. In our heart we all play. It's there from beginning to end, better hide before it awakes.
“Damn the Moon”, my grandmother used to say, and those were her better days. She’s used to not saying much, as long as I’ve known her, only her quiet muttered curses when cooking the family dinner every night. I knew they were curses since my mother cursed grandmother right back, also under her breath. When I was younger, I thought they were greeting each other. But something’s off; I sensed that. Grandmother has been alive for a long time, too long, according to her four sons and one daughter. I never did see my uncles often. They wouldn’t even come to my birthdays or the family holidays. But I see their faces on the family portraits on the wall—yellow and grainy as they were. I used to stare at them growing up; there wasn’t much else to do. My mother used to smack me on the top of my head whenever she caught me doing that. But I couldn’t help it. Their faces gave the lonely house I was living in a touch of reality.
The house I was living in was tiny, or maybe because I was in my single-bed attic room all the time. I didn’t care much for the rest of the house. They creaked threateningly whenever someone walked in the house or whenever I laid my head on top of my damp pillows and listened, unwillingly. I had no pets. My mother said that if I bring a stray home, she would let grandmother kill it and cook it for food. I believed her. After a while, I no longer desired to have pets, just as I had no desires for friends. It was peaceful in a way.
I learned to love the Moon, for I figured my mother and grandmother wouldn’t be able to catch the Moon and kill the Moon and cook it for dinner. I imagined the Moon to be quite crunchy and sweet some nights when I gazed at it; so much so my mouth would water. One time, my mother caught me staring at the Moon instead of the family portraits, and she smacked my head so hard I forgot what happened afterwards, until I woke up in a hospital room alone. I was mostly alone since then.
At first, I reveled in the big clean room where the doctors and nurses silently came and went. I tried not to stare at them for I sensed their dislike of me. Instead, I stared at the closed curtains, the metal trays by the bedside, the leathers on my ankles. They all looked alien to me, more alien than the Moon which now and then graciously traveled through my room’s window. I felt comforted and would fall asleep peacefully, only to wake up in an alien world by myself.
After some time passed, I was moved into another bigger room. This time with other people like me. Well, not quite like me, they were very noisy when they cried and fought each other for reasons I could not see. Only one boy shared my fascination for the Moon. Though, instead of gazing at the Moon during those nights, he would gaze at me. I do not remember his name. I don’t remember if we ever spoke. I was taught by the Moon, and the Moon doesn’t speak. But I think he might have understood me, through the Moon. He died one night while we were gazing at the Moon. I heard his last breath, and remembered it. I thought he was so lucky. The Moon must have spoken to him. The Moon must have called his name, and he answered it.
I'm tired & I can't go on. The screaming mountain is looming over my lowered head. Every time I look behind me I take a step towards it. It knows me like a prison inmate. I wish I could've taken my chances. I wish I could turn back and fly blindly towards the other horizon where my better half lies, waiting. What a stupid bitch! Instead I head towards the mountain. It echos my screams. It knows I'm coming.
There's a place called the Mother's Womb. It nurtures a seed till it's swept away. Don't look twice inside this digged grave, so much echos of the cosmos' rage. A fruit rotting in the all-giving tree landed in dirt and made it a gift. Don't be fooled or you'll lose the vein. There's no tale about the unborn babe.
I'm a spell-breaker, a free-er of souls. I smudge the line for a bridge, and I don't care where you'd go. I'm a spell-finder, a scavenger of Void. I search for signs of life that's your last breath. I'm a spell-weaver one that has no hole. The sufferings that I collected will need a garden to grow. I'm a spell-binder, an eater of the world. Anything I see I shall own each & every where I go.
1356, January 31:
Today’s my 12th birthday, one of the nicer sisters at my orphanage, St. Paul’s, has given me this parchment and a few pieces of charcoal to practice my writing, she told me to hide them and never tell anyone. I hope I don’t waste it much. Other than this few pieces of paper, I got my customary daily lashes, “being 12, from now on, “, sister Mary explained, “you will get 12 lashes instead of 11. For your sins.” I hope they won’t find out my other sin.
I can barely write this down, as I had suffered all 12 plus 30 lashes, though it felt like a hundred. They saw me near the tree, again. They warned me that the tree is wicked, but I don’t believe them. Pray this stays with me. Let no one sees what’s being written down in my delirious state. I love the tree, she takes care of me, like no one ever did, as long as I could remember. It tells me things… I better stop.
I lost my only friend Paula today to fever, at least that’s what they told us, though no one else has gotten sick. I only just talked to her yesterday and she seemed dreadfully burdened. She was not herself lately, she would not tell me what’s the matter. I think she might have taken her own life, like this other girl Josephine from the year past. It’s not safe here. The tree says so.
I heard screams last night, they had to come from Father Joseph, our paster. The terrible screams echoed in the chamber where all of us orphans huddled. No one dared to move. I could hear my heart beating like a march and the muffled cries from the children around me. I just let my mind wander. The tree comforted me as I entered a dream-like state. She said, “it’s OK, you are safe.” So I fell asleep.
We buried Father Joseph today, in the graveyard in the back of the church. I could almost see the tree from where they had made us sing hymns and look sad though none of us felt sad. Quite the opposite. Father Joseph was not a good man. He once drowned a kitten right before our eyes in order to kill our “sinful joys” that he said must come from the Devil. I sang hymns to the tree instead, praying that man had gotten what he deserved.
I couldn’t help myself, I went to the “garden” today. To the others, it’s a just patch of green between two graveyards in the back of the church and it’s forbidden ground, but it’s my sanctuary. The tree is in the middle of that green. She calls me. She gives me comfort, freely. She keeps giving me the will to live. I fell asleep leaning against her. She tells me secrets. She says Paula is in peace now, so is Josephine. And she said Father Joseph belongs to the Black Church now, and will never hurt another kitten, again.