Monday, February 8, 2010



Wounded  Staggering. Making my trek away from battle. Dodging the underbrush and missing oversized limbs from the tight succession of trees. The forest floor is wet and unstable beneath my feet. Snow has begun melting revealing a layer of mud. It isn’t clear how long I’ve been walking. My arm is in a sling and at the end my hand is wrapped securely in a blood soaked dressing. There’s a thick layer of blood coating my clothing. Wind brings a stinging sensation as it crosses my face. Open wounds. Part of my face feels like it’s entirely flat. Left eye sealed shut preventing any vision. The extent of the damage is unclear, but I must keep moving forward. In the distance I can make out a small clearing beyond the range of trees.

Off I go. On my way. Not knowing what’s to come. Or where I’ll end up. The fear is trapped in the back of my mind, but I’m not letting it get out its cage. Can’t this time. They’re hunting me down. I can feel it coming quickly behind me. I can’t take a risk of getting caught. There should be an easier way to tell the story but there isn’t. So I’m just going to tell it the same way I remember it. Now some of it may get a little dodgy and some of it might be wrong. Remember I’m trying my best to get it right. But my memory isn’t what it used to be and there are so many loose ends to reign in. In my mind it’s a loosing kind of fight. It’s all slipping away.

What becomes of the fallen? Left to die. Bodies begin to rot. Living flesh tears away in thin strips. Faces eaten away by the miniscule unseen microbes. Thousands of half-dead injured surround me. Climbing over a sea of flesh I make my way to the surface. It’s the earliest thing I can recall. Not knowing my own name or position in this life. An anonymous bystander in a pile of unknown faces. Faces that seem all too familiar in a distant way. Eyes without mouths. Mouths without close. Bare teeth beneath an open cavity where a nose should be. Metal shrapnel extends from unreasonable places in the wounded. Braces that surround and cut off where legs should be. I’m pushing against another recognizable stranger when I realize that there’s no hand at the end of my right arm. A bloody stump remains where palm extends into fingers. The amputation wound continues to weep profusely. Quickly I tear off part of my shirt and wrap the injury. With the remaining piece I fashion a makeshift sling.

It isn’t clear if I’m a fallen soldier or a casualty of war. From the remains of my tattered clothes, it’s uncertain of my status or rank amid the lost. Among the bodies there seems to be civilians. In fact my first assumption was that I’d been mistakenly placed among the dead from a violent combat. Clearly that notion is quite wrong as there appear to be women and children among the living dead. In this dark oversized warehouse, there doesn’t appear to be a door. But there is one. A door, visible by the small outline of white, shining across the blanket of human suffering and guiding toward freedom.

Freedom greets me with its blinding light. A brightness that is soon at a comfortable level as my eyes adjust to daylight. From my assessment this appears to be an isolated compound surrounded by towering walls. There’s no one in sight and I’ve seen enough horror to know this isn’t somewhere I can stay. There’s a small break in the perimeter among the walls of this prison. Swiftly I scramble toward the only visible opening. Reaching the breach in the compound, I can see a set of railroad tracks on the exterior. There are dozens of people, men, women and children, being issued like cattle from several rail cars by men carrying guns. Soldiers sent to discipline and wrangle as they herd the innocent into the yard through another much larger opening. Occasionally one of the human cattle gets out of line and is taken down with a bullet. The unnecessary violence sends chills up my spine and a jolt through my body. No where to run. No escape. Leaving becomes my only thought.

From that moment it gets a little fuzzy for me. My instincts were to run and I’m pretty sure I did. Running feels like it was the right thing. The sound of gun fire is a memory in my mind. Hostile voices and footsteps in the distance making their way after me as it becomes all too indefinite and distant of a thought. The sounds and actions are all that recalls while I continue to head off into the unknown. Returning to nothing. Nameless. Faceless. Stumbling through the wet snow toward the black trees of the northwest forest, I manage to find myself away from the unspeakable and horrific things that welcomed me into this life. 

This one is interesting as it's in the vein of survival, human torture, mutilation & experimentation. I'd been wanting to manifest something like it for a while. *Hitler had a lampshade made out of human skin. That always made me wonder. It's kind of obvious when I started this one. Bits and pieces coming together like a jigsaw puzzle with just the right inspiration.  Not on the list. I started about five or six last week in notes and left them behind. Weird as I usually don't do that. But I'm going back and fleshing them out as it feels right. So what triggered this one? Lost my temper yesterday about one thing and progressively made it about another and another. Nothing got destroyed this round except... Accidentally stubbed my toe. It's broken. And the wine didn't help me sleep. Only that restless kind without dreams followed. Anyhow, toes and fingers heal just fine, as this would not be the first time. Crooked fingers, but that just makes me human. A very flawed one at that. Enjoy? kisses. m.

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