(...here is that knife...) I do not know what has happened to us. It is too much to speak of. It is worse than you think. It is always worse. ~~~ Here. I have it for you, right here in my hand. It lies— restlessly, relentlessly— giving its last for you, giving it up. Isn't that enough? ~~~ Two objects in space meet, collide and fall apart. Any and every direction is down. All we can do is fall and fall. ~~~ There! Take it! Was that too loud for you? Did it hurt your ears? Did you get some on your face? Now you can feel it. It is still warm. It is still young at its core, at the very center of so long ago. ~~~ Beneath the crust, the mantle is heat. Lead cauldron. Furnace gold. More often some baser substance like dirt prevails. ~~~ Go ahead. Touch it. Feel its slick muscle, its waning strength. It is all the blinding colors of the eye that you will not see. They are not fading. They are slowly burning for you. If you listen closely, you can feel them running down your face. ~~~ Grab a handful. Watch it fall to earth. You will never know which way the wind blows, see it shade to light until it is gone. All you have left is the feeling of dust on your hands. ~~~ If there is darkness, it is absence. If there is light, it is presence. Either way it pulls out the center of you. Like the windlass to the bowels of St. Erasmus, it pulls the inside out of you. Go ahead, close your eyes and feel the colors of it squirming out of you. Can you taste them, rolling like iron on your tongue? ~~~ The roads are laid out with a precise machinery that clicks and hums about its business, doing only what we tell it and everything that we fear. These things are out of our hands now. The sacrifice has been made. The moon is already too full for us. ~~~ It won't be long now. Soon, they will come for me. They will put their fingers on my neck. They will see if there is anything that they can do. They will decide that there is not. They will make their pronouncements. They will talk of how they knew that it would be this way and how they had to try, none the less. ~~~ A job has no blood in it. It is a calculation. It is the job of a job to calculate the balance in the hand of the blind. The operators have all gone home. ~~~ It is almost over now. ~~~ Soon it will not matter if you can or cannot see all the shades that oxidize in air. ~~~ Here. Please take what I have given. It is never enough. Now leave.