One foot in front of the other. Just like you see in the movies. One foot in front of the other.
One step at a time.
One foot in front of the other. Through the wasteland of my own mind. Searching. Plodding on. The light hurts my eyes. I prefer the darkness. But the darkness is cold. Need a blanket. One foot in front of the other.
I am constantly thirsty. The need is overwhelming. As much for the simple fact that I'll die without it, as for the distraction it'll give me. The distraction from my condition. From my situation. Skin itches. Bleary eyed I stumble on. One foot in front of the other.
One step at a time.
He awoke from the day dream. It was like a movie. Like a lot of movies actually. There must be something in the human psyche about deserts. Something easy to understand. Or something terribly cliché. Who knows. He's sitting in class still. The teacher is rambling on about Andrew Jackson. Clearly the teacher has more interest in Andrew Jackson than He does.
The bell rings.
Like the weak men stumbling across the desert he has fallen and can't easily move. His feet flail a bit. His clothes cling to him, his personal effects are scattered and hard to organize. Others pass him by. Somehow they are more “together” than he is. More on course. They must have a map to find their way through this desert. They must have camels to carry their burdens.
He finally gets out of the seat, out of the classroom. No longer in a desert, he's lost in a sea. A see of teenagers. All so self important. Some laugh some make-out. Some fight. Some don't fight back. He's bumped and jostled through the hallways. Moving along with the current, no real direction in mind, but knowing he'll get where he's going eventually. Down one hall, then another. Down one hall and then out the doors.
The February cold and the cigarette smoke hit him at the same time. It's only 100 yards between the main building and the vocational building. But it's an icy smoke encrusted wasteland. Again he is bouncing along like flotsam. He's smarter than most of the people passing him on this journey. The vocational building is where they send kids who don't get “A's” on their report cards. It was intended to give “slow” people training for future manual labor jobs. He supposes that sort of thing is needed. But it also becomes a catch-all for those that are undesirable in the academic arena. Those that come to school smelling like pot and cigarettes that they didn't smoke. Those that look dirty and unkempt even after they've showered. Those that buy their clothes at army surplus shops, second hand stores, or get them as hand-me-downs from their absent fathers and grandfathers in an attempt to make a connection with something meaningful. Something missing.
The bell rings as he approaches the vocational building doors. Had he been walking slow? Had everyone passed him by? No, they were still with him, but they were rushing now. Afraid to be late to their vocational training. He walked on, keeping his own pace. After all, he was only going to art class. The teacher didn't care. She barely noticed him. He wasn't a prized student nor was he a problem student. He was just another water drop in the sea. Another sand grain in the desert.
© 2011 Marshall Dillon. All rights reserved.