The Speculation Express

This is the bus that takes you into the future, through the mad, cavernous swirl of unadulterated time. It brakes, but only cognitively; the motion goes on, but your brain chooses its pause.

It pauses on a future where you are the disembodied voice you always wanted to be. Is this the “good” future, the best-case consummation? Your voice is certainly useful. It broadcasts ethereal signals to those with forms, and there are those who truly heed what it says (for what it says is good and true and vital), but it is an it, you are an it, you are a choice made by self-destructive instinct.

The bus passes through that second and the window blocks that possibility, opening into a type of you that hangs from a set of wires. You are Saint Self, martyr of the electric cords. Your eyes have caved in on themselves. You look every inch the part of a judge to feast on sinners. The eyes of those condemned adorn your skin, and they now form rows on your arms, and your faux-crucifix is no tragedy, for you see all and you see in filth and despair and change.

The bus too changes, and it transports you to what looks like a dead end but is only a roundabout you circle, and now you fly into the next patch of future. You stand alone on an ocean shore, cloaked in what could be fog and what could be darkness and what could even be the astonishment of your own skin. Your skin is a mistake. In the past, they repeated something and tried to teach you: “Own your mistakes.” Your entire form is an error. You have rectified it.

You own it.

This is the future you come to own.

The bus stops.

Who are the passengers?

They are you.

Jude Conlee

image: Bart Heird