CONTRIBUTORS / FEATURED POST / MAD MAX / PROSE / WORD SLINGING

Mad Max: Are You There, God?

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Are you there, g/God(s)? It’s me, Mad Max.

Pardon the interruption, your holiness. I don’t intend to take up much of your time, so I’ll cut right to the chase: What the hell, man? What is going on?

Do you get me? I mean, like, what the fuck are you doing? You know? Like, what the fuck is this? All of this? How am I supposed to deal with all of this Universe in my face all the time?

Sorry, sorry. I don’t mean to sound ungrateful, but aren’t you supposed to be helping me out here? I know we haven’t ever been in much contact, but you could give me something. A vision or a sign or something, you know?

It’s just, how am I supposed to look at all of this Universe and think that somebody put all these pieces together on purpose? I’m supposed to believe all of this was intelligently designed and not just randomly occurring? There’s some “order” to this, allegedly. Can you show me it? Just a little bit?

It’s just, you know, some days I find myself staring at the mortar between bricks and the frayed ends of pant legs and the stray hair frizzing out of pony tails and thinking to myself: THAT is beautiful. Things breaking down, eroding, falling apart into dust we can’t even see to pick up. It sticks to my fingertips in the kitchen when I touch the counter because we never clean.

Those little things: they’re just as much a part of the Universe as me, aren’t they? Did you make those? Did you craft the dust in an image, too? What about garbage? And ash? And the way a stream bank disappears over time? Did you plan all of that? It would be so cool if you did.

Maybe I’m just looking too close. Is that it? Am I overly critical? Do I miss the big picture? I don’t think I do; I’m pretty sure I’ve seen all the energy in the Universe embodied in one vibrating guitar string, but I wasn’t in what you might call my Right Mind. I’m still in awe of the Sun and the sky and this Creation, if it is yours. I find some peace here and there, little pockets of calm where all that beautiful disorder can’t intrude or doesn’t.

But by g/God(s), some days I feel like my eyes grow so wide and my cheeks glow so pink that I must a gigantic, idiotic baby who can’t even wipe his own ass. On those days, every step feels like a first, and I blurble stupid sounds that I pretend weigh the same as real words. I crawl from room to room and take long naps because I guess I don’t know any better.

I think that maybe I’d be better off gutting myself in the woods and grabbing as many entrails as I can and hanging them in the low branch of a tree before I lay down to die at its roots on a bed of leaves while one thick strand of intestine, dangling from above and grasped in my dead hands, grazes the bark in the breeze.

And Lord knows, sometimes I still catch myself calling out for you. “Oh, my God,” is knee-jerk with me, but I don’t mean it in vain. Maybe all those little moments when I “OMG” are where I should look for you. Because I’ll admit that it’s a comfort to have a go-to for when the disorder makes me want to laugh and cry.

And that’s what I guess I think you must be: whatever else you are (deity, father, alien, or word), you are a comfort for us.

I guess maybe my problem is that I always feel like I do my best work in a hard wooden chair.

More from Mad Max Cothrel here. You probably shouldn’t piss him off.
Photo by Allison Maloney

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