ANTHOLOGY COMPLEX


THE CITY OF ANGELS (1:1:3:23)


The anthology complex. It's a disease. A psychological build-up of fiction. I have to know that there is a better life out there than this one. There are people who write down their dreams, it's nothing unusual, but the degree to which I have taken it has been from a habit to a lifestyle. An obsession and an addiction. These are the words of a therapist I was suggested to see many years ago. "I did what I could." Those are the last words of a dying writer.

Years ago I had a dream where I was in an apartment on a very tall building. I was on the balcony overlooking an entire city. If you looked down from it you could see all the people below you, they looked like ants. A plane flies by and it has one of those advertisement banners attached to it. "Welcome to the city of angels." Los Angeles.

I go back into the apartment and on my bed there is a shotgun there waiting for me. Just like most of us have a dominant hand or a dominant foot, we have a dominant eye, and in the Bible it says if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off, if your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out. My question is what if your entire life is dominantly evil.

I'm sitting on the edge of the bed with the shotgun pressed against my chin. My right hand starts to shake. Do it. Just kill yourself. It starts to shake even more and the shotgun is slowly rising up on a surface it calls home, my face. Pull the trigger. Just do it.

I see my mother's face and for a second I am aware that I am dreaming, but as soon as I realize this the shotgun slips and goes off at a weird angle, and then it's just darkness and silence.

Lots of times after we wake up from dreaming we may remember more than one dream, as if there were two or more parts to the dream, and these dreams were connected by an intermission, even though they don't always relate. A black silence. This is what the silence and the darkness felt like, then later I found myself still alive laying on the cold floor of a hospital building with my entire lower face missing. I'm in so much pain but I can't yell because I have no mouth. I guess I'll be doing alot more thinking than talking now.

The pain becomes unbearable and just when I think I'm screwed, I see that same shotgun laying there a few yards away from me. I crawl to it and I press the shotgun against bleeding flesh and bone and I pull the trigger in attempt to finish the job and and find salvation from this pain, but nothing happens. I can't die. Then again I don't think any of us ever really die.

If the mind is separate from the body, then perhaps even after the body has died and withered away the mind continues to live on.

Despite the fact that I didn't die the second time around, the pain is gone now. There is no added damage from the second firing but the damage from the first firing is still there, and I'm bleeding all over this cold floor. As I run to find a bandage of some sort, pieces of flesh hit the ground. Meat hits the ground. I find a room with bandages and I wrap my entire face to conceal this entire night, and then the black silence returns.

Now I'm sitting in a car looking through my windshield and I see two people arguing across the street. I sit there and think about why I couldn't kill myself, why I couldn't die. I ponder if I'm actually still alive.

The thing about being a free thinker, or an "enlightened individual" is that in the process of becoming these things you may either succeed in finding wisdom or the wisdom you seek will cause you to have a mental breakdown.

I'd like to believe that's the sole reason why parents or society don't approve of those who do not want to conform because such a path of isolation causes one to be different, and difference is murder. This isolation causes the individual to think and he or she becomes aware of the world around them. Truly aware.

This awareness, or this truth, it can become so overwhelming and while certain people will be able to absorb it, there will be those who cannot, and those people who cannot, they realize that the road not taken is not taken for a reason. They realize why so many people conform to its society and abide by its standards.

One of the two figures is completely shadowed in darkness, and the other seems as if it has a white light casted on it. After a while the dark figure withdraws a gun and points it at the light figure. I look down at the other seat for my shotgun but it's not there. When I look back up the two figures are now completely visible, two ordinary men arguing but the argument has escalated to what could become murder. I get out of my car and walk towards the two men hoping I can make things okay.

Fear is what keeps many of us from living the lives we want to live, so when fear is no longer an obstacle, what becomes of a person? His or her true self? The only thing that would have kept me from walking towards the men is the fear of losing my life, but right now I'm almost sure that none of us ever really die, so I walk up to the man and stare at him. I try to speak but I can't.

He looks at me and asks me what I want. That him and his pal here are ready to settle this dispute on their own terms. I continue to stare at him and I try my hardest to mutter any words I can, but I still can't speak.

He tells me to take off my bandage and talk or to get the hell out of there. I walk up to him and try to take his gun but he shoots me twice in the center of the chest. This man knows that the heart is not located on the left side of your chest.

I fall to the ground backwards, but I don't feel anything. I look down to where there should have been two bullet wounds but there are no wounds. The other man, the one who was once casted in white light, he stands there and starts to laugh. The man with the gun becomes angry and begins to shoot at me again even though I've already fallen to the ground. Even though I'm completely helpless.

Eventually he runs out of ammunition. The man with the gun walks closer to me and stands over my body, and he sees that I am still alive. He is in disbelief. The man who is laughing stops laughing and also comes closer to me, and then he kneels down to whisper something in my ear. He tells me that the Lord has spoken.