It’s that moment that I’m sure everyone has: awkwardness where everyone keeps fidgeting, standing when they’re seated, sitting when they’re standing, eyes darting towards the top corners of the room, and all you really wanna do is stand up and say, hey, y’all, take a pill, have a drink, why so serious?
Of course, I could not do that. I’m dead, you see.
For that terse scene, you are unsure if it has been five seconds of silence, or five minutes, or five hours, or even five days. Quite still, but the machinery in the brain is pumping full speed. They have to: moments like these highlight the fact that the locomotion ends, might as well pump up as much activity as one can.
A wonderful thought, theoretically, though in most cases the imagery is less about the movement of man in time and space, but rather the morose recollection of what it means to be human, what it means to live, what it means to feel that tension in the groin when the legs cross trying very hard not to pee.
Or rather, that understatement that going from point A to point B is a parabolic arc: a predesigned beginning and a stone throw, ending in the length the arbitrarily moving from the start to the end is one-side, fatalistic, one; or rather a segmented paralysis of episodes, each shorter than the last, each more painful, more absurd, less, for lack of a better term, alive.
And once the point is reached, once motion closes, we are left, hovering, knowing that what it means to be dead is what it means to be alive: that the trajectory is infinite; that the episodes are never cancelled. We bare our souls, and forget what it means to be alive and understand what it means to be an entity, seeing, knowing, forever being.
But they’ll never know unless then they die, and when they do, they will look around and just wish everyone in the room would goddamn smile.
This is the 100 Songs Project, a 100-day writing challenge based on AFI’s 100 Years…100 Songs. Every day, I write a short poem, prose piece, or play based on, reacting to, rejecting, accepting, or doing something related to one of the songs in the top 100 list.