On Our Journey to the End of the Earth

On our journey to the end of the earth, we took a Greyhound so old there were cigarette holes in the upholstery.

Out the window there were seagulls and we asked, are they doves or are they angels? And the driver said nothing because his throat was a copper tube made from melted down pennies.

On our journey to the end of the earth, our clothes were blown from our bodies, and we tried not to be ashamed, fingers gripping onto our skin in case that was supposed to go, too, and we tried not to be ashamed about being ashamed.

We walked all night every night, sure each road was the last road, only to see another street still longer in the scorch of the morning sun, until one day, when we’d been gone so long we couldn’t remember where we’d come from or what had come before, we really did find the end.

We saw the universe was an open mouth with no teeth.  We saw the universe was a woman and we already knew her name, Linda, our elementary school lunch lady, hands still swollen and smelling of bleach a decade later.

We stood staring into the abyss, the three of us, you, me and Linda who was now the universe, who’d lost weight since we saw her last, doling out fish sticks to fifth graders all those years ago.

The three of us, unsteady and smiling in the wind of the world and the great gaping greatness of the end before us that would one day absorb us, and the bus driver from before was there too, and so was your old soccer coach, the one that used to tap your bum in a way that made you unsure if it was inappropriate or not.

And then, we didn’t know what to do.  After journeying so long on land too dry to drink from, both too hot and too cold and with only store brand cereal to eat, all we could ask was why we were there and where had we come from?

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