The noise was overwhelming and the bathroom was locked and there was a beverage in her stomach that didn’t want to be there anymore.

She didn’t want to be there anymore.

Down the hallway, through the kitchen, through the bodies that parted like an ancient sea, past faces  she almost recognized and down the stairs, always drifting to the right like that car she had driven in high school.

She freed the antagonistic beverage in the corner and looked for a gate so she could walk away like she always did when her world shrank in the drier and didn’t fit quite right anymore.

And then she heard it.

She looked up and the empty sky was full of stars despite the glaring city lights.  She looked down and saw a tiny portion of the life she had loved three years ago.  The white noise: the rattling wind of a semi passing a girl on a bridge, trees taller than buildings, the two person mosh-pit, sand crisscrossed with seal prints, sunsets made of silver, strangers who treated her like family and a jump off of a cliff that pushed her into the sky instead of onto the ground.

She could feel it again.

She was home.

She collapsed.

Face down in the grass, sprawled across the tiny lawn like a chalk outline, she could feel the something that she had been looking for.  Eyes closed, she listened for the silent roar that had evaded her ever since she had stepped off the road and back on the bandwagon.

It didn’t come.

Or it did come, but only for the tiniest of moments.

Like the squeal of a public address system, like a crack of thunder or a flash of lightning, like a lone firework exploding overhead, like the unnoticed bulge in the sidewalk that momentarily reminds you that walking is controlled falling.

It had come, but only for the tiniest of moments.

And then feet pitter pattered around her and voices murmured words that their owners assumed she could not hear or understand.  Questions and comments and slight concern overflowed the precious, roaring silence, destroying the something that too rarely calls to her essence like a magnet draws in iron filings.

Her fingers curled through the long, prickling strands of green and into the moist dirt, reaching for the iron-filing something that wasn’t there.

“The real seems worthless beside what is seen as possible by feverish imaginations, so they detach themselves from it, only later to detach themselves from the possible when that becomes real in its turn.  One thirsts for novelty, for unknown indulgences and sensations that are as yet unnamed, but which lose all their appeal as soon as they have been experienced.  And then, when the slightest difficulty arises, one is deprived of any means to withstand it.”   -Émile Durkheim


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