In The Shadow of All Things, by Alex Wealands

There was never anyone else to blame. It’s not that I was ever against happiness, I just wasn’t cut out for it, never had the right skills to sustain it. But then, what even is it but a fluctuating state, the same as sadness but judged differently. Judged. Horrible. Somehow every implication, every hardship that ever came close to me was ingested, something to tear down, inside, within. The pain is there. I can feel it. Even though I was always close to it, now I know, it is there now. Now. Gone. Back. The cold. The draining. Pulsing. Throbbing throughout, always already there, on an edge, aching. The cold must set in and that is that. Forever in­between. Would it always be disappointing, just going? Is there ever any glory amongst the bones and flesh? Face down. Panting shallow breath out into the air. That’s the worst part. What will they all think? I can see the faces now. I just wish they didn’t have to know so they would never feel pain. They wouldn’t have to feel anything. Dust to the wind. The thought of others in pain


All around lay heaps of rotting rubbish. The body convulsed, intermittently writhing and trembling above the mud as warmth slowly seeped away.

Droplets trickled down the glistening walls. Street lamps danced rhythmically as the rain crushed the hanging mist. Soaking into the sodden earth, secrets crept.


Even if my eyes opened if I could open then would I be able to see? Those times at night when I would be staring ahead into the darkness drifting into sleep and something would appear in my vision in front of me and I would swear my eyes were open and looking upon the thing as if it were there only for that moment. But it would go when I would try and focus and when I would look for particular points the whole would fade and blur. Why can’t we hold onto things like that? Something is happening. It is really happening isn’t it? Why did I rarely remember my dreams? I

could recall about a dozen or so that have always stayed with me. Another world. Sweeping over

so slowly that perhaps it has already happened and this is the in­between. But the patterns the

shapes. Could they still be there in the end or would they what else could even happen? A cold space that opens up. But it would be nothing opening up. The null of nothing. A zero point where

the moment is forever lost in the moment. Could I have ever been indifferent to it? Actually indifferent and not just convince myself can anybody? All of that which could have happened and

all of that which did happen all comes down to one moment that isn’t even close to a moment all I could have been all I was all I have ever been all I was all I will never be all I had and lost. I remember finding that doorway that same moment that same instant the shortest breath one day gone without a trace we all are

The cloak of night fell onto the world seeping into the skin life lives in. Unerring, the sky travelled with the wind across the ether, concealing foundations below.

Even though there were silent and open skies, something was there. Not in the air, but in all things. Behind the silence, a din, ingrained in habit, forgotten for millennia in the tinnitus of existence.

always too much too young it was never enough never enough I am too young to have lived and old enough to miss all I will miss but was there a point could there ever have been a way to always experience knowingly to flow like water did it come with time the one thing dwindling from me but all is wrapped in that word everything happens within the vulgar frames when all there is is now its all it ever is a present people say to savour the moment but you can’t stop the succession it’s all hopeless what are they they rise up and fall down all things even the words it will be gone soon it will be nothing in the blink of an eye her eyes always I could never forget so much could be seen in them I always knew always or did my imagination fill in all my gaps like when we told the same story always differently but always the same the eyes and then everyone not everyone every thing that ever was will once again return back into what is not we are hopelessly lacking all capability to look past our own thoughts and own frames the answers are probably all there but we lack all that is required to see all we have seen our memory into imagination ‘if one could awaken all the echoes of ones memory simultaneously they would make a music delightful or sad as the case might be but logical and without dissonances no matter how incoherent the existence the human unity is not affected’ but is that it just a frame over chaos inconsistencies lying to ourselves to carry on unharmed but what is dying something is dying one is dying forever falling into new rooms and opening all of the doors to find more doors and more rooms with more doors leading to more rooms with more doors always leading to the same leading to the different but where is the crack in the floorboard to the labyrinthine anterior to all towards the night of the night forever the night forever towards the night

Alex Wealands lives and works in London.

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