ANTHOLOGY COMPLEX


SATAN IS IN THE DETAILS (1:1:3:27)


Jamal is reluctant to tell me who he is hiding from and why he is doing so. I have to know what I'm getting myself into so I tell him if he doesn't tell me something, he will have to get the fuck out. He tells me that he borrowed some money from someone, and that he hasn't been able to pay them back.

He says that in the past, that person has broken some of his bones, so before he goes back to his home he has to have the money first. I ask him how he's going to get the money and he tells me that he has some sort of deal that is going down in a few days. I tell him that a few days and one night are two different things.

Derek is now going through my composition notebooks as if he were studying for a test the next day. The only thing more intriguing than his reading skills and his comprehension skills are the questions he asks. He asks me how a dog could have a soul. How come fate and coincidence are the only options. Why a thief would rob himself. When the universe ends, is it actually beginning.

While Jamal is making phone calls, Derek and I are discussing the dreams I have had, except he doesn't realize that they are dreams. He thinks they are short stories attached with some kind of message.

Three days go by and they are both still here. Derek has taking a liking to my "short stories," and Jamal is constantly on the phone. Last night the people on the news say there was another murder around my area and once again it was filed under "D" for drugs. People killing people. Sometimes I wonder if man discovered murder or invented it.

Now I'm on the bus taking a trip to visit Kathleen, Joe's mom, because it's Wednesday. On the bus I remember a dream I had three years ago. I'm in an airplane, and the only other passenger is a man sitting to the left of me. He begins to tell me about the evolution of man, how the creature first learned how to communicate with its own kind and other kinds around it. He tells me how all forms of language is simply the outward projection of the mind.

The questions someone asks, the way they react to a certain event, these are who they are or who they want to be. He starts to tell me that man created a part of the brain that deals with everything that is exterior to the body it belongs to, and a part of the brain that deals with everything that is interior to the body it belongs to. He tells me that these functions were birthed from the need to survive.

Now the man is telling me that he once knew God, but that they had been separated long ago because they disagreed. He tells me that they were working on a project. They were nearing completion when they came to the last aspect of the project, whether all the lifeforms in all possible places would have a free will or not.

He tells me that God believed that they should have a free will, but that he himself believed that they should not. That if these lifeforms had a free will, they would eventually destroy the entire project itself.

He says he tried to remind God that even the beings who created him and God had stated that giving him and God and all the others of our kind a free will was a mistake. Apparently the mistake was going to happen again, and maybe again sometime down the road.

So this man says he and God argued, disagreed, and then they were separated, God being sent to one place, and the man being sent to another place, and it was decided that God would finish the project alone. The man was angry when he saw that God had decided to grant the lifeforms a privilege of free will.

Several days later, the man swears to God that he will make the lifeforms murder, steal and deceive one another to show God that giving them a free will was a mistake. The man says he kept his promise for years, and eventually the sins grew to a degree that he no longer had to continue to prove his point. The lifeforms became so sinful that they teach their offspring the ways of sin, and it simply carries on by itself.

Now the man says after so many years, he realized that God had not once shown his face to his creation. He had not once intervened. He let his creation destroy itself as if he didn't care. The man says at that point he isn't so much concerned with the wills of the lifeforms as he is with the will of God.

For years he claims that God is a hypocrite, saying he has given will to his creation yet has no will of his own. God never responds. This man says that those were his last words to God, and since then he has been waiting for God's reply. The man says knowing God for as long as he did, he will probably only speak through the actions of his creation.

I ask the man how he knew God, and he tells me that he was once one of God's angels. I start to wonder that if maybe it was this man who was running the entire universe instead of God, if our lives would be better. We would however have no free will, but that's of course if free will is what we think it is. I say to the man that perhaps God has actually intervened. I tell him about Moses and Jesus, and the man says that God was not in these people.

He says that Moses and Jesus were just two of the people who were born from people who murdered and stole and deceived. That Moses and Jesus learned and chose to deceive people because of the free will they were given by God. I ask him about the people who God has spoken to, people like Abraham, and he tells me that these people were disillusioned. They saw God because they needed to see God in a world such as this one.

Now there is a familiar-looking man walking towards us, and after he passes, the man I am talking to tells me that the man who just passed us is the antichrist. I ask him why he looked so much like Jesus, and the man tells me that it was merely a mask. Just like the mask he himself was wearing a mask.

I arrived at the home of Joe's mom, Kathleen, still wondering why she could have possibly wanted me to visit her. By the end of the night I realize that she has been alone since her husband died.

All the relationships she had in the past ended in bitterness because of the sins of her son or ended because the other person had passed away. It's funny how once someone reveals that they are a homosexual, they immediately become a different person. The friends they had and the people they knew, some of them disappear. However, that's not to say that some of them don't stay. There are always people who will accept you for who you really are, or even who you really aren't.

Like so many other people, Kathleen, Joe's mom, suffers from isolation within. Like so many people she is surrounded by billions of lifeforms, yet manages to feel alone, and so now in her times of desperation she reaches out. She seeks forgiveness not from me, not from Joe, not even from God, but from herself because self-acceptance is the beginning of the end. Accepting that she was not strong enough to say no to her husband and the others who condemned her son. She tells me that when Joe wakes up she wants to be next to his side, she wants to move on with the little time she has left, and she wants to die satisfied. Not in those words.

She asks me if I understand these words that she is saying, but I can't possibly comprehend them the way she does, the way she wants me to, simply because I don't have children. Because I've never had a wife or a husband. Because I'm not so old that I think time is running out for me to fix the messes that reach out from the past and into the present and await the future. I can't possibly understand because for the most part, my heart is filled with more hate than it is love. This misanthropic life.

As I'm returning back to my home, I decide to instead spend the night at my parents' house because in my apartment building there are fools and intruders. People like Lynne who ask you to garden with them. People like Joe who put your name on a form. People like Jamal who seek refuge, and when you show them kindness they lie to you. People like Mary who at the very sight of them makes you feel sick.

Even my home is a place where I don't belong. I sit here and even the home I grew up in, my parents' home, I don't feel I belong. I feel as if there is no place for me in a world with so many people I can't call my own, but as I'm beginning to fall asleep, perhaps to dream of a paradise where I do belong, a utopia where I can find people who are like me, all I can think about is Lynne and the time she said that your home is your home.