May 28th, 2005

(no subject)

Hello, I need honest opinions of my work. Hope you like this one. If any of you do, there are a lot more on my journal and blog, folllowjohndoe.blogspot.com Thanks.


Carboard cutout



The mirror never cracked, but I think my face did when I smiled at it. So unreal, nothing more than a few muscles tugging at the ends of my mouth, but it means so much when that is all they ever want to see. I give the speckled mirror a toothy grin, and feel my head crack a little more and there is no way I can keep this up for long, but gotta give em what they want, right?

Right?

Nails and teeth and old monsters jangle around in my head, cutting up my insides, as I walk out onto the stage, my turn to speak. I don't even know what I'm talking about, I've completely forgotten where I am anymore, where I'm going, who I'm with, but who says you can't put on a great show even though you're dead inside?

Right?

I open my mouth to speak, looking across at the millions of carbon copied faces, all smiling up at me and I smile brilliantly back at them, wrenching my mouth into the most beautiful grin you could ever imagine. I feel like my insides are going to fall out, my head on the verge of nuclear meltdown because there is too much up there to hide anymore, but they love me, they love me and want to hear the shit I am told to say. They're only here for the smile, the presence, the lights and being close to what they now call God: someone famous. And I give them what they want, all the style and pizazz you could ever want, and they cheer, they're cheering for me and I pull that smile up another two notches.

There isn't a soul in this stadium, no soul in me, nothing more than a cardboard cutout for the wannabe cardboard cutouts to love and die for. Standing there, speaking on autopilot, I realize that I've forgotten what it means to be alive and free, if I ever really knew in the first place. The smiling adoring faces are probably thinking the same thing I am: What the fuck are we doing here? Why do we do this? And there is no answer, only what is, and we all never knew how to think past that one.

I hear them cheer once again and I automatically smile for them, because I must have just said something great, something someone else wrote who was hired to put shit on paper. They feel great, I feel great, the writer my agent hired feels great with his paycheck, so what's the problem? Why do I feel like I'm about to crack?

Because I do not want this, I want to be alive, not something manufactured for the masses, I'm a person godammit and the only thing we all have in common is we breathe. We're not alive, we're no longer human, only machines begging for those right buttons to be pushed which is my job, and why am I doing this, leading them in a collective march to pointlessness?

Thoughts whizz by my head and I falter in my speech, forgetting where my place on the page was. For a split second my smile falters and I see theirs drop with it, nothing more than drones following my lead, here to devour my aura and ready to devour me if I do not live up to it. I look down at the page, panic setting off alarms in my head, and the lines blur together, my place in the useless paragraph gone forever, I fear. I cannot do this anymore.

I look at the crowd again, with my mask gone the only thing left is fear, and they all begin to stir in the awkward silence, wondering what's happening to their god on stage, how can someone so wonderful and perfect make a mistake? They feed off putting us in god's place, feed off the anger they always feel when their newest god fucks up, and love the glory of the next one to put in his place, and wash, rinse, repeat on into eternity until they wake up or we blow up.

I try the smiling thing again, once so easy and fake, but now I am naked with no real smile to show. My head pulses, pounding red into my eyes with each heartbeat, swelling with all the stifled shadows I buried every day of my life. Tears run down my face, but I can no longer see, blinded by the brightness of a world seen through unmasked eyes, and I open my mouth to scream.

And my head cracks down the middle, no more than a shattered mirror image unable to retain what is not real, and I fall to the floor, barely hearing the crowd gasp in unison at my unintentional martyrdom. I lay there dying, finally cracked and broken under the triviality of a life never lived, and already I can see the newspapers tomorrow telling of my death, something sad and terrible and entertaining for the next five minutes until they switch the channel and allow themselves to be suppressed again by all my equals. I lived and died for it, their love of a cardboard cutout that served their souless purpose to the end.

Gotta give em what they want, right?

Right?