Pillars Of Life


The Soul. The filter of man’s impulses. Arbiter of the good and evil that resides within. A spark of life born of devine will. The source of man’s inspiration for and appreciation of beauty. Father of twin daughters empathy and sympathy. Gifted to man to connect him to his fellow. Yet its voice in the form of conscience sounds so shallow.

Water. The elixer of life. The nourisher of all things. Animals, plants and insects depend on her. Mountains do not stop her path. But mountains are eroded by her stealthy war of attrition. Her abondance only masks her contradiction. She adapts to heat and cold and is never truly destroyed. She houses, feeds and belongs in all living things.

Faith. The conviction of a belief. Blindening and inspiring masses to causes. Also spelt as hope, anchors the soul to a promise of. Value inherent in the purpose it gives. Sometimes fickle as the wind and yet capable of immovable will. Its object need not be true. Presence of it though drives men to live their truth.

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A depressed mind, heavy heart and burdened soul.


The idea that happiness comes from companionship and love of some true and perfect soul mate is a fantasy. Perhaps it is cynicism that makes me doubt that all we really need is love. Afterall, i have always had love in my life and even then it has always hurt. That is the danger of love. It opens you up to pain because you let your guard down and allow yourself to be vulnerable.

Why do we believe that the love of a stranger will be greater and more fulfilling than the love of a mother. That is in my opinion the purest form of love. I know my mother loves me. I have always known that. Even when she was being harsh and seemingly unsupportive, i knew she did it out of love. Yet she has often failed to understand or get me. All my life i have tried so hard to be understood but i have always failed. If family, those biologically programmed to love us the most do not always get us, why would coupling up with someone change that? Why would falling in love and getting married suddenly complete us?

Everyone has their own baggage. Which means being in a relationship only doubles one’s burdens. Why is that preferrable? How can we honestly expect someone else to bring us the happiness we are unable to find ourselves while simultaneously providing the happiness they seek in life? We often find ourselves drowning in a pool of psychological misery with no life jacket to bring us to the surface. No life boat to ferry us to safety. There are days we cannot find the good in the world and the thought of not being good enough to be loved almost kills us. We know that our happiness should not depend on someone else. Yet we can’t seem to stop needing someone. That is the unspoken paradox of the heart and mind. Logic and millions of years of evolution dictates that we learn to stand on our own two feet. Yet the yearnings of our heart calls to us to find meaning in life through companionship. I don’t know about you but my heart still flutters when a new romantic interest comes into my life. And then the familiar pain when that person fails to meet me halfway on the emotional bridge i have painstakingly constructed in my head reminds me how being vulnerable can hurt so bad.

Love is a crotch and it robs us of our independence. So why does society demand that we submit to it in sickness and in health? It is true that no one wants to be alone and growing old alone can especially leave one empty and even unfulfilled. But the alternative forces us to settle for something that does not guarantee happiness and requires us to overlook flaws we wouldn’t in others. In the end we all settle for the sake of not being alone.

No matter how bright the flames of love burn, it inevitably dims and threatens to go out forever. So marriage becomes a commitment to work everyday to preserve the dying embers. Life becomes routine and old points of conflict flare up again and again. Sacrifices made become sources of resentment and true love becomes a distant memory. At best all that is left is mutual respect of the hard won partnership with none of the passion. So if love is life, it’s no wonder love like life is subject to the same laws of entropy. The irony is love like life is chaos. It is all disorder and the only order to be found is that life and love like everything else ends eventually returning to their natural resting state of nonexistence. As they say, “all good things must come to an end.”

A Dark Feel


The smell of death hung heavy in the air with each breath of it weighing on the lungs. It left a unique taste on the tongue like cold metal with an indescribable bitterness that lingered at the back of your throat. The smell pervaded every room of the massive mansion reaching even places that the metaphysical goo from which it oozed could not reach. Like the goo, the oozing smell had a physical presence. So as Timothy opened the front door of the secluded mansion on the hill, he was knocked backwards by the it. This mansion was well known in the neighbourhood and children were told stories to keep them away from it. Afterall, it was in this mansion that Trevor Marshall killed and buried his father, mother, aunt and young sisters. He buried their bodies in the basement where they laid until their discovery. The neighbourhood children still believed the stories about more undiscovered rotting corpses in the house. Yet it was not the smell of dead bodies that knocked Timothy down but rather the smell of death herself. In this mansion hidden and hiding from those around her was lady death. For even death knew to fear what was coming. An end unlike any death was capable of bringing was coming for her. Even death was afraid of going back into that primodial darkness that existed before the very first spark of light. From that darkness came life but all life ends because that is the duty of death. When all life is gone, death will have no place in the aftermath. So even death hides and fears what the end brings and this mansion was perfectly suited to her nature. Timothy ran from the house in fear never quite sure of what he was running from. But death has that natural defence of making fear course through every fibre of a man’s being. So Timothy ran not because he saw death in all of her cold, dark and elemental glory but rather because he felt her. His friends would surely make fun of him for failing the dare to go into the locally proclaimed haunted house. But Timothy knew it was not ghosts that haunted the house but something much older and much darker. Something truely worthy of his fear. Yet it seems fear can have power over even the most fearsome of beings for all things with awareness know to fear the end. So fear is not the absence of courage but the beginning of widom and lady death is oh so wise.

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What is it about life that has us all so eager to hold on to it? What is it about death that makes us all so afraid? If life was a lover, she would be that cruel lover that our mothers always warned us against. Afterall, life doesn’t care about us. Life doesn’t wait for us. And life certainly doesn’t forgive because she’s never shy to throw the consequences of our actions in our face. So if life was a relationship, she would be a bad one and death would be that breakup that delivers the oh so sweat relief that puts us out of our misery. So why do we fear death when life is so hard? Why do we hate the idea of the end when it is all that reminds us to live? Why do we cry when we always knew the end was inevitable? All things die. Even stars die and they shine much brighter and much longer than any human life. So if life is a relationship, then it must not be all bad. As they say, no one stays if it’s all bad. If death is the end, why run when it catches up to us anyway?

Untold story of lost beauty.


When i was a young girl, the boundaries of my imagination were undefined. I would spend hours in the backyard of my childhood home lying down on the ground surrounded by tall weeds. I would look up for hours often losing myself in my daydreams and never hearing my mother’s voice as she called me in for tea and biscuits. In those days the clouds would form shapes of animals, people and things. Before i ever came to Paris, i saw the Eiffel tower in the skies over my home in Sheffield. I was always seeing the beauty around me and all i wanted was to be a part of that beauty. To show those around me what i saw in my mind’s eye. So i became an artist. I drew and i painted and even dabbled in some sculpting. That last one wasn’t always pretty but i loved every minute i spent doing it. In the end i graduated from a presitgious arts school in Paris. I thought i would make the beautiful world i saw around me even more colourful.

Looking back now, i realise i was still so young; still so naive and unprepared for what would come next. I’m so far from home now and the clouds have no decernable shapes anymore. My mind’s eye is plagued with horrific scenes i can’t get rid of. My body is always soar. Worn down by all the terrible acts done to it. All i want now is to forget. To drown my mind in an endless sea of intoxication. I never used to drink. But i learnt to counter the feeling of sleeping on cold tiled floors with the warmt of vodka. It’s one of the few perks of being here. We get fed to keep us alive and we are offered plenty of alcohol and drugs to ensure we are too damaged to run. The added bonus is i no longer dream. I used to dream in colours now only darkness. I look around and the world has lost all of it’s beauty. I realise now that beauty is in the eyes of the beholder and a pained soul sees no beauty. My mind’s eye can’t see anything anymore. In my mind it feels like I’m stumbbling around in a dark corridor i can’t find my way out of.

I cannot wait for my death. Lately, it’s the only kind of day dreaming i can do; fantasising and imagining how it will happen. Maybe I’ll be lucky and it will happen in an instant. I hope it’s quick. But if i have to die in one painful way, at least it will be the last ever pain i feel. The only reason i haven’t taken my own life is that i know what would happen to the other girls if Victor comes back and finds me dead. He would pick one of them and kill her as punishment and as an example to the others for not stopping me. I’ve seen him do it before. It’s his way of ensuring that his products – which is what he calls all of us girls trapped here and waiting to be sold off as sex slaves – don’t try to escape, even through death. But i know i will escape this life. Victor says i will be auctioned off soon. Maybe then i will get my chance to leave this world behind. Then and only then will my pain end and if there is an after life, maybe i will get to see some beauty again.

Sorrow before the final darkness


A man walks into a small closet. At 5’10, he stands with an impressive physique. His broad shoulders, rough skin and toned muscles give him an imposing look. The scar reaching from the top of his left brow down over his eye lid and stopping at his cheek added up to an appearance that portrayed a man with a violent past. He was lucky to still have the eye. His scars however reached much deeper into him. Deep into the recesses of his being. Deep into a part of him he had long buried. 

He stretches a hand into the darkness and pulls on a string that sparks light to a solitary bulb dangling from the ceiling. The bulb provides a dull glow as it flickers on and off. The man reaches up on the shelve at the back of the closet moving shoe boxes aside until his hands settle on a red one at the very back. He grabs it with both hands and delicately pulls the shoe box from its dusty spot. The man’s hands tremble slightly. The result of an unfortunate malady.  It was a painful reminder of how long he had lived. The box isn’t heavy but he moves it with care as though to preseve precious crystals inside. He brings it down and places it gently on the wooden floor. Covered in years of dust, the box looks worn with the corners and edges frayed. The man takes his time opening the box blowing the top of the it and in the process spraying the years of layered dust into the air. The light in the closet intermittently catches the dust in its weightless dance. Placing his right hand on it, the man rubs on the box gently. Clearly the box and it’s contents have sentimental value and even now invoke deep emotions in him.

After a few seconds of staring down at the box, he finally lifts the lid and inside are photographs. He pauses and his eyes fill up with tears that he fights desperately to hold back. This is a man that has gone through life overcoming the things that would overwhelm most men. Maybe it was the fact that he hadn’t looked at these pictures in years. Maybe it was the pain of knowing he was alone in his final moments. Perhaps it was a combination of both, but in that moment, he felt like he would break. He felt a kind of pain that threatened to leave him shattered on the floor like dropped china.

He reaches into the box and brings out the pictures. He goes through them one by one and he feels his hands tremble slightly as he does. One by one he flips through the photographs, taking his time to spot every detail of the faces in them. Each photograph takes him back across the land scape of his memory. Every expression, every pose and every background calls to his mind events and emotions felt in those moments the pictures were taken. As the memories of joyful times flowed back to him, the happiness of those moments flee and are quickly replaced with sorrow.

He comes to the last photograph and he just stares at it. He stares as though he hoped if he did so long enough the woman and child in the photograph might move. No such luck. Instead, as is the nature of people in pictures, the woman and child simply smile at him frozen and preserved from the coninuous steady march of time. They would never get older. Only the memories of them might fade. They are beyond death. Only the polaroids may wither.

He puts the pictures down, content that he got the chance to see his wife and daughter one more time. The world has gone to hell but at least he got to see them before he left. He never believed in a heaven but hoped for the sake of his wife and daughter that they were there. If there is a heaven, it wasn’t likely he would get in. They will be coming soon. So it was good he got to see his family one last time. 

He takes a deep breath and grabs from the bottom of the box what he came for. A 45 caliber hand gun. He starts to load the bullets wondering why he would need more than one. The lights go off in the room. This makes him pause. The bedroom door opens without a sound. At that moment the bulb in the closet starts flickering on and off again. A creek on the floor boards behind him takes him by surprise. He didn’t hear it come in. He cocks the gun and puts it in his mouth but is grabbed before he can pull the trigger. The room fills with screams and sounds of bones breaking and blood splashing on the floor. The only mercy Charlie recieves in his final seconds is not having to see what killed him. Then there is silence. The light in the closet flickers off and on for a few more seconds and then goes permanently off. And so darkness falls.

PANTHEON FALLS


A long time ago, the gods fell. Not just from grace, not just from glory, but from their lofty heights above the mortal realm. It wasn’t just one set of gods that fell but all of them. From the shores of Africa to the temples of Asia, the old gods all fell.

The history of earth is littered with gods from every culture that has ever existed. This is because man has always looked to the skies and imagined beings far more powerful than him. From this belief in the divine sprang forth the mythical gods of old. And it was this seemingly infinite wellspring of belief and faith in the divine that sustained the gods and gave them their powers. Man believed so the gods lived.

However, over the millennia, man’s belief in the mythical waned and so did the strength of the gods. Age and infirmity began to catch up to them. Even the mightiest of them, the Olympians and the Aesir were not immune from these effects. So when war came to the heavens, the strength the gods needed to win was not available to them. The gods lost and one by one they fell to a force they had not foreseen and had no hope of defeating. A new god named Lota’r had come from the stars and even the strongest of the gods of all the different cultures, Zeus, fell at his feet.

It could be said that there was more than one factor responsible for the fall of the old gods at the hands of this alien god. Firstly, the Aesir, the only ones of all the old gods to ever be as powerful and formidable as the Olympians died long before Lota’r came to earth. The Aesir, who inhabited the realm of Asgard were the Norse gods of power and war. They were as fierce as the mortals who worshipped them, the Norse Vikings. However, Ragnarok came knocking and the final battle ended the Aesir. Unfortunately, the natural order of events was interrupted as the Vikings went to war without their gods to protect them and they were defeated. So they scattered all over Europe and lost their connection to their gods. Without their people to believe in them, the Aesir could not be reborn. And so ended their era. So when the great war began, one of the two most powerful sets of gods was no more. One could only imagine how the combined strength of the all father Odin and the sky father Zeus would have changed the course of the war. We will never know.

Another factor to consider is that the dark lord of the underworld, keeper of Tartarus and eternal torturer of souls, Hades, had chosen to sit out the war. Instead, he watched from his throne as Zeus was slain along with those that followed him into battle. He laughed uncontrollably as Poseidon fled from the battlefield once Zeus fell. Lota’r had no use for the souls in the underworld and so never came calling for Hades. Perhaps, if Hades had not let his spite for his brothers, over an age old perceived wrong, rule his judgment, his strength might have tipped the scale of the war. After all, his power did not come from the belief of man. Rather, it came from the tortured screams of the souls in his domain. Ironically, it was the trick by his brothers to make him the lord of the underworld that spared Hades from the ire of the alien god. Though this irony never occurred to him.

The animosity from centuries of infighting amongst the gods was likely another factor that caused their fall at the hands of a single alien god. The fights among the different gods of the different cultures for supremacy over the mortals had left them unprepared and unwilling to work together to repel the threat posed by Lota’r. While man looked to the heavens for guidance knowing that he did not have all the answers to the great questions of life, the gods failed to learn the lesson of man’s dependence on them. Man had humility. The gods did not and perhaps in the end, it was their pride more than anything else that caused their fall.

With the fall of Zeus came the raging tempest that lasted seven days and seven nights. As the mortal realm, which had never known such wrath spew from the heavens wondered the cause of the phenomenon, man for a moment feared the end and prayed to his gods for answers. This temporarily renewed faith in the divine was too late to save the gods. Instead, the few remaining gods ran for cover as the prophets of Lota’r hunted them down. Those that survived long enough made it to the last remaining haven on earth, Atlantis. Here the king of Atlantis and god of the oceans, Poseidon, was at full strength. The oceans were his domain and the city his fortress. Created long ago, he had imbued the city with powerful magic to ward off his foes. Not even his brothers could set foot on its shores without his permission. So he sent out an invitation to the last remaining surviving gods to join him in Atlantis. When the last of the survivors made it to the city, Poseidon sank it as a final magical act to reinforce the protection spells around the city. For the oceans were his domain and nothing sails upon it without his say so.

Much of this history is lost to the mortal world. Many have theorized reasons for Atlantis’ descent to the depths of the ocean floor without ever coming close to the truth. Many more do not believe such a city ever existed. Yet, the truth is Atlantis did exist and does so to this day. If man knew the truth, he would know that Atlantis must exist for the world needs Atlantis and it needs the world.

A thousand years later, the war is not over and man’s world is about to be dragged into it as Lota’r is set to rise again. Healed from his injuries sustained from his battle with Zeus, he will finally do to earth that which he came to do all those years ago. Man’s world is not only a party with a vested interest in this war. It is also the prize to be claimed by the victor. Man’s only hope will lie on the timid shoulders of the last of Zeus’ sons who is destined to be the one with the power at the right time to reach into the abyss of non-existence and drag forth the old gods out of the very clutches of death. For that which dies can be reborn. But man will have to recapture that which it lost a long time ago, faith in the divine and the mythical. Only then will this last great hope of the world have the power he needs to save it. For pantheon falls but it may also rise again.