Xenflexio

No blood appeared on my cheeks when icy, cold drops of rain slapped them. Hundred bee stings pierced through my flesh with each globule of water. Still, I trudged through the rain because...

...I couldn't go back...

...to the temporal joy of mortal living. Sweet candies, greasy meat, and chilled wine, they were all inviting. The true good I expected turned out to be a big, fat nothing. My own body enslaved me, guts protesting from the inside and lungs commanding my breaths against my will. It wasn't pleasant at all. My two legs failed me, I couldn't walk. My biological rhythm forsook me, I couldn't sleep. Demons haunted me at night and a buzzing spirit possessed my immobile body. I lived a nightmare nobody else could feel. All the well-wishes, sympathy, and prayer could never deliver me from the pain of abused blood and flesh.

No burn marked my neck as a shower of flames fell from the sadistic heaven. I expected to be seared but nothing of the sort occurred. Heaven's wrath didn't terrify me, for I knew the flames were illusion like the paradise that they promised. So I ran away from it all and I told myself...

...I couldn't go back...

...to the lifestyle of the societal nomads. For they were tricked by the god of heaven with noisy parties and classy balls. He said, “Follow my commandments and you will have it all!” He sent forth angels with wings made of paper. They sang hymnal lullabies and the nomads rejoiced. I believed the god and I loved the angels. For forty days and forty nights, we danced to their songs. I heeded their lead until I saw the strings. With my teeth, I cut it. I cut the cord and ran for the hills, my own wings carrying me through the breeze. I left the sanctuary that wasn't a nomadic life at all.

No gut was harmed when the thorny limbs of dead trees came to life and whipped me. They wanted to place me into submission so they assembled a barricade around me. I smashed through because I knew...

...I couldn't go back...

...to the hypocritical prison made from others' definition of my life, my values, my character, my quirks, my beliefs, and even my name. Who did they think they were to believe they could shape me? Who did they think I were to assume they could mold me? My heart was its own shape since birth. Together we laughed and cried, day and night. Only the two of us knew each other's secrets and wishes. Why would we allow these foreign things to invade us? We didn't even need to ask why at all.

No fear was felt when ghosts crept behind me. I turned around and poked fun at their translucent bodies hovering mid-air. I had to because...

...I couldn't go back...

...to the heartbreak that almost killed me and the disappointment that smothered me. I was a wayward child who saw hope in a dark, cruel world. I saw the light behind the clouds and heard the peace inside the noise. I searched for love amidst the hate. I looked for life during death, for blue from the red, and for land under the sea until my scouring failed me. The dreams of a child had broken, right in front of his very eyes.

No spirit was defeated when I went face to face with the worst demon in existence. With an overwhelming embrace, he lunged at me. However, I knew better finally.

I wouldn't go back to the demon's doubts, lies, and fears. He touched my body, I felt the sensation. He ate my food, I tasted the flavor. He hugged my dog, I felt the warmth. He sang my song, I heard the melody. I lied in bed, he went to sleep.

I killed myself and it saved me! The demon, he was no longer in my bed. I pinched my skin and there was pain. I licked the ice cream and it was sweet. I kissed my cat and my tongue got fur. I wrote a poem and I bled the words. I opened my eyes and I saw the world.

Down to the fields, around the valley, up to the hills, I felt very free. At the top of my lungs I screamed, “I wouldn't go back! I would never go back!

The echo rolled down the hills. The beams of sunshine graced my youthful face. I indulged the earth together with my newfound friends. On my left was Green. He told me to be mindful of my living. He said the spirit could never exist without a home. On his left was Black. His real name was unknown. In a low voice he uttered, “Only for the strong, only for the strong.” On my right was Blue. He gave me a bucket of water where I saw my face. He didn't speak. On his right was Red. He had the boldest smile of all. “With war, you bleed. With wounds, you heal,” said he.

All at once we tumbled down the other side of the hill until we reached a different territory. Specks of sunshine appeared as the winter gave way to spring. We began our journey into uncharted lands. I let my friends dash before me. With warm breath I said, “I will never go back. I will never go back.


Cover image: dead tree by 55Laney69