Engulfed by nihility, I glance behind me to ascertain that my shadow has vanished.
I do not blame her. In fact, I envy her.
Life is a truly thrilling phenomenon… that is, until it departs in all of its abrupt and callous glory. It leaves naught behind aside from its feathery footprints and the bludgeoned blood, shredded skin, and harrowed bones of the heartbroken.
Now, with each aggrieved breath I seize from the ether, more of my corporeal substance gushes out of my slumping cadaver. I touch my skin reluctantly, and when I peel my hand away, I find that the tips of my fingers have obtained a filth-ridden film of plasma and ash. I do not remember that which brought me to this state, but I accept the bleak truth –I am one with oblivion.
I reach for my once wispy, animated curls, only to recall that they have been replaced by serpents – blooming, coiling, venomous menaces. Thriving off my misery and sins, they jeer and they boast. I try my utmost to ignore them, but I less than thrive at this daunting task. They are all I hear in my head – even by clawing my face and burrowing my nails into this putrefying skin of mine, I am unable to liberate my cranium from their derisive victory—my defeat only becomes more deafening with each slick moment that oozes away from me.
I devoured that which was noxious, and cunningly cloaked, when these serpents offered it to me in their quest for domination. The lethal poison invaded my soul and instigated the destruction of every bit of goodness and joy within me – now I am left hollow, and simultaneously dense with the startling echo of nonbeing. The snakes take their cue – they glide into my shrieking scalp, wrap themselves around the dominant mass within my porous skull, and squeal in elation as they squeeze its tender tentacles to molten slime in a single sweep of staggering swiftness.
I am demolished.
And yet, I am no longer void. Wickedness now dwells in my crumbling bones – I have become stranger to valor.
I desperately seek anything to soften the ghastly voices roaring in my head and cleanse the rotten blood pooling in my mouth; but, overwhelmed by the sensation of degeneration, I find myself unable to achieve solace. My ribs are withered, coarse powder settling within this chest of mine; my heart beats to the rhythm of Hell’s fire, jolts of Hades’s bliss tombed and thrashing in my torso.
Momentarily, my ominous fate shall come for me – I will morph into that which departs from a forlorn corpse, a collapsing something in the everlasting chasm, another existentialist that has ceased to exist.
This is my finale.
Poem and photograph are the exclusive creations and property of Ami J. Sanghvi.