Part 2 - Two Hedges
The fires in the fields are ticking over. The oxygen in the air is choked in itself. Fire, smoke rising. The crops on fire. A mask to place on my face as it comes inside, mutilates the internal furnishings. People cry out and fall to the floor, clutching at their throats, slowly reddening. If I were to smash these windows...The glass would sprinkle over my face like glitter. The rolling swards of purest green, stretch downward, like a valley of quiet, peaceful eternity, like a rock out to sea – trapped – from which there can be no escape...Behind stone walls and rabbit-burrows, unnumbered, countless fields, filled full of unnumbered, countless grazers, several tied up to the buckets of seeds, left dead, unsown. Beyond lie the flowers, reds and blues, golden on green, tied by the buzzing poison of nature, the twisted well, water poisoned at the very bottom. I live to dream of countless deaths...Passing in the winter...Men and women work the fields. Years past, whilst time suffocated itself, an underground proxy rising to the surface. Now they are all dead. Their blood dries slowly on the flowers. These poison barbs wrapped the decrepid, 'modern-age' houses in their snare. If I were to see them now, lost, forlorn, lonely, desperate. Chains and buckets have now sunk under saturated earth. They are no longer of any use.
The red engine, the bus, the tracks coursing down that hidden road. Oh how the ghosts would weep in helpless fury, emaciated, in chains. A solitary line of smoke I now see, emitting from the road. Hide in the broken barns nearby. See the engines in all their glory. But we are past that time now. It ceases to be of any concern to us, the modern ones. My time in this world will be fleeting. My days are numbered now that I have breathed. The broken embryos are frozen as the pebbles under the Arctic. I crossed my eyes and saw no more of this inevitable future.
I needed to go. Opened my eyes. Left. Climbed down these steps and that was it. No longer a slave to the pre-determined. It was in my hands.
This place had changed since I was young. The place had changed. Houses either side of a field. All in all, a ghostly district. For all that has changed I still remember the pain, the anguish, the suffering. On the park bench, sitting down, kneeling. Rocking. Tears. A wreath laid in Ancient Times. Drenched in blood. Mockery by the shattered windows heaped on us by the carrion. Foul black plumage glistening. Smile for me now. 'Smile' she said. Hold the corpse at your feet, hold it tight. The identity shapes on charred grass. Houses, telephone wires, alarms. All passing through. Late again. Late. We are always late. These signs point to nowhere now. They only rust in hedges. Left for the birds to sharpen their beaks. Hidden. Buried. This is the lost village. We are the lost ones. A circle of blood slowly fading in the sky. Cadillac lights faded from years past in roadside mirrors, a nuclear wasteground. I climb the fence and watch the sunken barrels. Grass and gorse covers them. Nothing new has stayed. Nothing has endured. All has been broken in this dead-end district.
Lights are all it has left.
I passed by the houses, the radiation touched upon all sides – the light from a torch, walls peeling fast under the glare. No life resides in the Earth. The barriers between spaces will (and always will) remain dull, grey, blurred metal. Lightning fragmented in the bowl of dust. One last dying life-form, ripped to shreds in the desert hills. The gardens corrupt once again. Is there no peace here? Suffering has been prolonged. The gods made it so.
If there was a centre to this village then I have not found it. I only passed under the swinging lanterns, gold once – now grey – under which rich couples courted in the light of dusk. The post offices of the future, each complete, each now destroyed. Only wildlife has made its peace here. The endless suffering through years of war and death has left its black, bitter stain. The quiet cracks the skull in half. The birds feed on silence.
If only I could see the stars. The realms of contentment are closed. The doors shut. The fees too high. The only happiness lies in the hope of new discovery. Anything must be greater than this. This endless list of names ticked off. Now they are only remembered as faded engravings, barely discernible amongst the ever-thickening mould. I found the dead here. They lurked behind faded curtains, folded within layers of dust. Like webs linking trees. Broken in through windows. See them with their swords on their walls. Old wine in their decanters – hidden in cobwebbed shadow. The ice we walk upon is pure now, let it remain that way. The machines, the tools, lay broken in the desert. The sand finished tumbling from diaries. Kept locked away. Their memories escaped. The water log since spilt from the vase.