The stain is gone. It was not cleaned, per se – more blown away. This was a labor of time, wherein many contiguous years, like lazy janitors, take a pass at the entrenched mark with the sham-cloth of ‘moving forward’, working with wind to move what was once liquid, now dried, settled, into a new dimension of physics, fluidity, freedom, and chaos. Giving little effort, yet perfectly aware, of just how effective an incremental approach can be, understanding that people have broken out of jail with less. Paying itself no mind, it saves its energy.
In its place, a scar, a lump of flesh exchanged for tragic memory, accident, the heartbreak of living. A regretful price, exacted at the very end of the transaction, well after the foot has been wedged in the door and the hostages have been taken to the roof. It looks like a hybrid, a combination of skin and curse words incarnate, a history of blood and untold stories, an ugly tattoo emblazoning the mismanaged glory of ‘going through something’. An echo of injury, a ghost more annoying than frightening, that expresses a tacit whine when merely bumped, scratched, rubbed, looked at. It itches when it rains, as if there weren’t enough ways to complain about the weather.
I have said nothing of pain. All of that was left at the scene, then wiped off the surface of a present moment, tossed swiftly to the bin of past, leaving behind only the stain, which itself would become, eventually, a scar. These registers cannot translate anything but the suggestion that we must change, and that we must end; thus, too, the scar shall be wiped away into dust, and with it, too, the pain.