While you were sleeping, the spirit entered your room and sprinkled magic inspiration all over the keys, but the thing that did so was no muse, it was instead The Devil himself. Or herself, sometimes, depending which gets the biggest rise out of a given victim. Damnation’s nothing if not flexible in its machinations. Hell adapts with expediency in order to sink those claws.
When you awoke, you found yourself more fully-energized than you’d been since childhood, the veil of decades lifted, your feet light and your heart even lighter, floating overfull with the volatile levitation of high-test hydrogen. Almost about to sail away, almost about to explode, almost both. You rose with brilliant notions and the will to follow through, the focus to keep going until they yielded fruit. As if you were born again or, at least, the you inside your head.
You didn’t think it was the devil and didn’t think it some muse either, you’re far too thoroughly modern to believe in either boogeymen or angels. You thought you’d just finally gotten it all in place, that the jigsaw inside you finally fit, that you now could see your reflection clear as day. Finally, you recognized the pattern, finally the pattern recognized you. You were finally going to get it right.
And you labored under that delusion for a decent length of time. You gathered your notes and strung them up as baubles on a Christmas tree, like stars in the sky, you got a solid start on your perfect vision you could finally almost taste.
Then it left mysteriously as it arrived. The energizing revelation disappeared and you were stuck again with your normal imperfect self, your undisciplined self, the one you have to live with for the rest of your life. The one that can’t sustain such brilliance. The one that fails.
The kicker is, no deal was ever struck, you didn’t sell your soul, there was no pact where you did but were allowed to forget as part of the deal, the evanescent blessing you didn’t even ask for was given over freely. That’s how the devil gets you now. She or he stopped dealing in rigged contracts decades back, we are all clued into the literal-meaning twists these days, everyone takes care with what they wish for, The Twilight Zone was just the final nail in that threadbare cliché’s coffin.
It’s so much easier, with so much less paperwork, to give you an easy taste of your maximum potential, then yank it away without warning, a stage magician absconding with a tablecloth but the wine glasses intact. A glimpse of who you could have been if nothing ever held you back, if everything aligned, left to dissipate like sea-foam after high-tide’s crash. After that, you didn’t even have to die to go to hell. Still alive yet already damned, decades with left to breathe while burning away. You are already there.
Last updated September 01, 2021