Chapter Nine

There is a storage unit filled with a vast array of memorabilia of the past. Inside its’ walls contain boxes stacked high to the ceiling. The filing cabinets are filled and overflowing. In here a man can get lost deep within himself. Leaflets of scattered, scribbled words lay pinned on the walls and crumbled at my feet. Pictures of the dead and gone lay dusty in their frames and cameras with old, crumbling film lay waste with moments never captured.

The air is old and stiff. I choke quietly while trying to breathe in a decade of exhausted carbon molecules. I try to refrain form this room for any extended period of time, in fear of trapping myself in my own mess. The moths have eaten holes through my shrunken sweaters and a waft of moldy air hit my nostrils, trailing from a filled black bag by the corner.

This room brings me solace, and yet at the same moment it brings me utter despair. On the one side, as I look into the room at the relics of my past, I see a younger man starved for the wild and so very certain of the future. He seems so endearing, so enchanting. He stops for nothing less than pure beauty. He wishes to capture every one of life’s mysterious moments. His youthful vivacity pours from his lips as he manically expresses his distaste for the unrest, and the bountiful beauties of a brilliant forest.

On the other spectrum despair fills his lungs and turns his stomach into deep, gnarled knots. He sees the days growing shorter, the nights cold and long, and can feel the sting of the blistering cold on his hands. He can see his faulty maneuvers, his impossible impulsion in which dictate every action and reaction.

He sees the room as nothing but rubble, bits of trash laying spastically corner corner. To him, they meant something powerful once, but as he looks at the pile through a different frame he sees what everybody else will see. Garbage. Waste. Useless memorabilia signifying nothing about the hoarder. Will his life ever mean anything outside of his cluster of circles?

Any knowledge of accomplishments made have faded or became null and void. No feat worthy of mention and no goal perfectly accomplished. There is only shame and defeat in this room. My stomach tightens and I begin to swirl with nausea. It fills up inside of my body, leeching into every organ. Hunched over in a fit of dizziness, I spy a can of kerosene across the room through my watery eyes. Fumbling forward I reach for it and unscrew the cap. I douce the room in a rage, covering everything I see. I pour it over my scribbled ramblings and watch as the ink spreads into unorganized thoughts. I pull a match out of my waist pocket and strike it into flame. Looking down upon the room for one last moment, I feel the nausea begin to loosen. The match falls to the floor, igniting the kerosene, engulfing the room in heat and flames. As the blaze continues, I can hear the popping sound of glass picture frames shattering in the heat. I smile, close the door and leave the building.

As I walk down the road, a light mist, like a haze, falls down upon me. The sniffles start, and my eyes water up in despair and joyfulness. The dizziness from the nausea has changed into dizziness of elation. I am free from my past. There has been an extreme weight lifted and destroyed. I look up at the sky and see the clouds of smoke rolling thick. I realize that the mist is no mist at all. It is the fine ash of my past. It rains down upon me and soaks into my pores. I thought by burning this room that I would free myself. I had no understanding that as I burn my depression, that negative energy gets released back into the atmosphere.

I suddenly felt very bad for the clouds. Certainly they didn’t deserve such negativity. The clouds were so weightless, I had no intension of bringing them down. But slowly and surly, they descend from the sky and begin to fog out my surroundings. I’m sorry Earth, for storing up so much darkness and then releasing it upon you when I felt burdened. It seems that I cannot function properly. How dare I take the warm, clean energy from the sun and Earth, and convert it into toxins and decay. So there it is, all around me. I once had my past stored deep within, tucked well below the surface where none could see or intrude. Now I extracted it and turned it into the dust which surrounds my life. Instead of hiding from myself, now I am forever in its’ looming presence, in the distant fog.

Chapter Ten