A hundred candles burned on the altar to the Conqueror. Across the room a fire raged, blistering hot. In the dead of winter the gladiatorial Oratory was hotter than the far deserts. The droning hum of High Polity filled the arches of the colosseum led by the sonorous intonations of the red-robed Kulav. He was an old man, bent with a century of study. Before him knelt a young man who had earned his freedom in the most worthy way, in blood, and was reentering the world under another, purer yoke than that of slavery: service to Ból.
Death found Himself lost in a field of stars as foreign to Him as the sands of Viridi and here He found Illyria. Her endless currents unbroken. The Goddess’s children, undying and unchanging. He tasted ozone and honeysuckle on every breath and He knew this place was not Empty. Over the waters Death said,
“Who are you?”
If you have not yet seen the film, please proceed at your own risk.
View original post 2,927 more words
There are many, many posts I begin but never manage to complete. Such is the way of life, I think, but hopefully I’ll finish this one because it’s on the important side.
My sister and I had a conversation recently about failure. About how we both live with a constant sense of having failed in our lives no matter the milestones or personal goals we have achieved.
january: resist everything that would destroy you: apathy, entropy, tyranny
february: your pain always has meaning; go to the fucking doctor
march: you do not need the right words or any words at all to be worthwhile; they will love you anyway
april: love and fury are indivisible
may: death isn’t interested in you nor, for the first time in your life, are you interested in her
june: this is how you breathe
july: yes, it is worth the extra work, time, and money to own AC
august: you will spend weeks longing for currents and snowmelt and the summer will pass before you can get a breath in edgewise
september: high collars and independence become you
october: you were not meant to live alone
november: that urge to diminish, to be less, is the antithesis of strength
december: nothing lasts forever and that fact will always be a blessing
what i have learned this year
Outside of vague poetry I’ve ignored the stroke. I want to pretend it never happened as if, maybe, that will undo the brain damage and emotional trauma that comes with going toe-to-toe with Death. I’ve spent a lot of years flirting with Her and I guess Death finally decided to flirt back.
I traded one form of insulation for another.
“Now I saw in my dream that… they drew near to a very miry slough that was in the midst of the plain; and they being heedless, did both fall suddenly into the bog. The name of the slough was “Despond.” Here, therefore, they wallowed for a time, being grievously bedaubed with the dirt… because of the burden that was on his back, began to sink in the mire.”
— John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress
The Slough of Despond is a nasty, miserable bog of guilt that sucks people in and is almost impossible to escape. In The Pilgrim’s Progress it’s an allegory for sin but I think it can be more accurately described as Depression. Yes, capital-D, clinically-diagnosable Depression.
Knowing someone stuck in the Slough of Despond can be difficult, draining, and generally lead to depression itself. I know this because I am scandalously intimate with the Slough. It’s my Unhappy Place. I’ve lived with it since I was 8 years old.