Thirteen Years Later

We stand
Around so much ruined soil
Where a stone
Carves out your name.
Marks the place you landed.
And from where
You always seem to rise.

An uneasy rest
You have found in us.
Or more honest:
Founded in us.

Our hearts,
And our heads,
Still orbiting around your absence.
Still mulling over the earth —
Imagining how different
Everything would be
If only you remained;
Instead of him.

When you left us,
Mom,
You were a star.
A supernova.
Scattering us across the sky.

You know…

I’d trade Saturn’s rings
Just to have you back.

And Now, We Write

The Dead Speak – The Walls Listen – And Answers can be Known

Hope not ever to see Heaven. I have come to lead you to the other shore; into eternal darkness; into fire and ice.

— Dante Alighieri, Dante’s Inferno.

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A House of Flies

The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. – H. P. Lovecraft

A single flickering bulb burned overhead emanating what one might call light in the loosest of considerations. The dying glow of an ember capable only of making the darkness a palpable, visible, thing. Where shadows, thick and endless, lead to impossible realms where only nightmares dared to dwell.

Where the light provided meager illumination, Morgan cautiously wandered from stack to stack of old dusty boxes filled with the mementos of his youth. A rusted tricycle. A collection of journals long thought discarded. A jar of baby teeth. Photographs. Mixed tapes. Letters. Memories surrendered to time itself.

The sharp scrape of metal and the sudden flick of wheel against flint resounded through the dark as Morgan withdrew and ignited his faithful lighter in a single fluid motion. The flame did little to push back the suffocating darkness, but its humble offering was greater than that of the bulb overhead.

Deep within the darkness, further than his light could reach, came the sound of water slowly trickling down some unseen drain. The concrete floor beneath his feet was damp, and small pools of water collected around him.

The air was moist. Stagnant. Thick with the acrid aroma of mold and sweat. And something else? The faintest hint of festering meat, metal, and shit. He choked back the urge to gag, hesitantly delving deeper into the darkness.

Morgan noted another noise. Something just above the sound of water. Breathing. Struggling. Rasping and wheezing in the throes of death. And painfully he became aware he was not alone in the dark.