Ageless girl sits in corner on library floor, staring at the knife in her grasp. No one else there. Lights dimmed but spotlight intensifies on her as speech escalates.
(Tear-choked, defeated; rising passion):
The day started well enough;
like all beginnings, it was
innocently sincere; deceptively dull
- naïve, believing so faithfully
the day wouldn't trip up somewhere.
It fell apart when I woke up. Revelation's
a harsh, powerful thing; you accept
the truth for so long, only to discover
it's in fact only a perception, a variation
on Truth which mightn't be the truth
at all. Truth's the core of reality;
surface's what we make of it.
Mine's twisted with confusion, and raw
with wounds of betrayal… I'm in deep now…
My mind tugged at the drapes cloaking our
universe's fourth wall, time retaliated
and whole chunks of day
went, swallowed by existential crises.
It's no wonder I'm failing maths;
more of a book person myself. (laughs bitterly)
But that doesn't matter. I don't. We,
as atomic blips on the galaxy's radar,
don't… The knife glints…
I read author names
decorating these spines and wonder,
will we be remembered? To be carried
through centuries, as Odysseus was,
is a privilege exclusive to
philosophers and poets.
Even then fame is short-lived.
We're all just numbers; tallies
totted up for studies on cancer,
fated to be part of biology questions,
frustrating statistics that'll pass,
identity unrecognised, beneath lives
of the existing. (runs thumb along blunt side of knife)
If I were shot now, what would I be
but perhaps a brief name
on a news clip?
The temporary tragedy that'll lose itself
in curtain folds of years…
Why exist if we don't matter?
Physics says we are matter, so why don't I feel like it?
We're particles of footprints, impact so molecular
it's pointless, particularly when we sprawl, intentions
dispersed, as effective as dust
tickling nose hairs.
A sneeze? That's what we earn?
That's what we live for?
But then, suppose we unified… broadened, deepened the footprint…
Is that not a valid purpose, no matter how miniscule?
(snaps fingers, stands)
Now it returns to me!
That beautiful scent of purpose!
(drops knife) Forget this knife, forget that selfless act!
Now I will live for myself, unswayed by others. Now I must live for life itself…
(looks at book spines) …For our names are, after all,
preserved in grave stones…