The sun, long obscured now, hung distant beneath the clouds. Many forgotten moments lingered there. The sun abdicated, present warmth bid farewell, and the wind took over, blowing malevolently in.
The man wandered about slowly and dazedly. He made barbeque while his wife, an empty husk of a woman, reluctantly took orders. She was there briefly and then would duck back into an alcove in the food truck, not once looking up in curiosity.
I was drifting through a sea, tired and unaware that reality was shirking its responsibilities to me. Lack of sleep, lack of direction, lack of a present—all these rang dissonantly across the field of people. Kids, who had come up to me moments before asking in jest for my number only to be sent away in confusion by their shattered frame, now wandered off from their picnic table perch.
I looked up after listlessly peering through the local newspaper—that lady had to be devoid of all happiness, which was strange on an island such as this and at a music festival on a summer day. She sat hunched, not so much dreading as emptily waiting out her life.
My stomach turned from the sweetness of fresh mango juice now sitting on guiltily-ingested unhealthiness.
It was as if a light was dimming, not on the physical world or through my senses, but in all concepts and all things, all things tying me to this moment and this space. Not having the words or ability to divest myself of this break, I gripped the step.
Through sheer force of will—that abiding, transcendent anchor in time and space—I was still me when my two friends came over years later. I could formulate a plan now and draw out from my fractured mind enough words to string together to convey that we should head back to the beach. Yes, a nap maybe or just lying down. That will do for now.
Now to wait for the phoenix seed of something green.