There is no way, do you hear? The back is not strong. The head is not strong. It is the contending horses that are strong. Always so. Yet I must hitch them up to my golden chariot as always and race out to the point, to the lighthouse there. The sea women will rise up out of the waters and fill me with the strength to do this. Then the beasts will obey and stop running in the four directions, assigning themselves at the compass points so that I am trapped at the center, as always. When you allow them to do this you are doomed. Yet I cannot go on for much longer. There is no way that I can do this.

Let me tell you. I wake up each morning like somebody else, not quite a whole person. I grow slowly hard and cold. I put on what little remains and become myself, forming the crooked posture. When that sets I am ready. Hello. Good morning, stupid man. Were it not for the sea women I could not still move gloriously among my kind. They would laugh at me as they should, throw stones until I go away from here to live among the crabs. The fire comes now only when I start it. No longer inside me it must be kindled from without, using sticks and papers, and if I have had the sense to gather wood before I fall asleep the fire will come on right away when I touch the stone to these things. What a stupid condition. I should end it. Were it not for my high station I would open my belly with a knife.

Many years ago there came a ridiculous troop of men all in suits of the wrong size, ridiculous checked suits. They came and rearranged everything, you know, the houses got smaller, the god of the point became a lighthouse. This is how I got to be the big shot here because I chased them all away. Even so the place remains in a poor condition. Nobody comes here now to trade with the people, whom I had to turn their lazy asses to farming; to going out in boats and spearing fish or gathering them in nets which they have to make themselves. They only listen to me because of the strength lent me by the sea women, who explained at some point that it would desert me for long periods of the day. It is at such times that I must hide in my house, assuring that I will not be seen by the young men. There are things which must be done first. To warm the body. With external fire, as I have said already, and with meads. Also I must be sure to swallow the powders. All this plus nourishment. Then I am ready. For what? Any more I do nothing but ride around and look glorious. Then I return here to sleep it off. The people assume that without me the sun will remain under the sea. I have not educated them otherwise, for it is to my benefit that they continue in stupidity and in dread of myself. Whod do the work otherwise? I was never taught to work. Only to run and play. Later to fuck, which is my only true purpose now. They send me their women to fuck and make sons. Some day it is promised that from among these one will be chosen to replace me but only when he can control the horses, do you hear? Until then he must fish and plow like the rest. There are so many little shits around here are saying, I am the one! From time to time I must knock them around.

So we have here the condition of being. Its OK. Could be better, I could change it were I not the laziest son of a bitch who exists. So I pray at my shrine which is a stone covered with hideous names and an ugly face that it is incorrect to look upon, so must I turn away when I worship. What more can I do? Very little else remains. I know I am at the center of all this somehow and yet I must disappear.

Brent Powers: Brent Powers has published short fiction in 3AM, Amazon Shorts, Bewildering Stories, Opium, Pedestal, Sein und Werden, Thieves Jargon, Unlikely 2.0, Wordriot, etc. He also published a novel, The Dog's Tooth in 2002.

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