In the year 2020, God decided to murder the world.
He cast down a plague of germs
To fill the lungs of the sinners
To choke them
To drown them
To make them cry out through plastic
To shovel them into a pit
To burn the piles
So that the smoke might rise
And fill the nostrils of the One
Whose demands can never be fulfilled
Whose throne is made of bones
Whose goblet is my grandfather’s skull
Who drinks to the sounds of coughing
Weeping, bleeding: the shards of dreams tinkling.
When this plague is over, we will shuffle into the light.
Our feet will touch the earth and we will shiver.
Contact with others will terrify us
And we will slither back into our holes
To become one with the laundry and dust
Our air stinking of old food and masturbation.
We’ll no longer know what to do
When confronted with the world.
Our will broken by the plague.
Our capacity for thrill atrophied by fatigue.
We all died long before the plague arrived.
Our death came the day we were born.
Our slow, long, unavoidable fate
Has followed us all our lives
And has driven every desire and resentment
Above and beneath our awareness.
All that’s changed is now we’re closer to the truth.
Our youth has been cast into the flames
Our childhood charred and disintegrated.
2020 was the year that burned:
A pitiful, anguished, ugly thing
About which praises will never be sung:
An abomination whose architects should be hung.
But everyone knows the guilty always go free
And the innocent feed the worms and trees.
If any good can come of this
Perhaps in the future it will be written
That those smitten in the scourge of 2020
Were enlisted in a divine army
Not commanded by a tyrant
But a noble General fighting for justice
In a place far worse off than this.
If we could see that other world
And watch their children die and mothers scream
Maybe we would understand
Why we were left to fend for ourselves.
Yes, 2020 was the year that burned.
It smoldered in a pit
And we’ll be glad to see it go.
But as some religious mystics say
Suffering is the temperance of the soul.
The soul of the human race
Needed to be cleansed by fire
So that the healing process might begin
Brett Petersen is the author of The Parasite From Proto-Space & Other Stories,frontman of Raziel’s Tree, and drummer for Dionysus Effect. All things Brett Petersen can be found at jellyfishentity.wordpress.com.
Image: “Immortal F*ck” by Brett Petersen