The earth reaches up to me.
And I push it down.
I take my bare hands and I slam into the dirt. I claw, and I punch, and I pack it down. Soft gets matted down into tough turf. Loose soil loses it’s gentle touch as I pound it into something coarse, unforgiving.
There are legions under the dirt.
There are whole worlds buried beneath this earth.
Monsters and milestones and madness.
Things that time has forgotten. That humanity has forgotten. Things that are no longer important, because people have stopped knowing they existed.
This will be no different.
I am caked, coated in the blood of the earth. It protests as I bury, as I pack and push.
It is so sick of swallowing man’s madness.
Of swallowing his mistakes.
Of eating this world’s dead.
But I won’t stop.
Things that lie beneath lie for a reason.
Not a single thing lost has been necessary. Nothing under the ground needs to be brought to life. It is only man’s wretched curiosity, the plague on his mind, that prevents him from simply leaving things as they are, that forces the earth to spew up the old. The dead. The forgotten.
Out here, deep in this wilderness, I know it will be a long, long time before mankind’s curiosity upturns this earth. Before his meddling unearths what I must bury.
By then, I will be dead.
I still curse the man that unearths this thing. This monster I’m burying. This mistake I’ve made. This harrowing secret.
Whoever that man is, regardless of where he comes from and why he does it, I don’t think it matters to me.
Whoever that man is, I hate him.
Hate him with all my bones.
With all my body.
With all my spirit.
If I greet the earth and I’m greeted in turn by hell, then so be it. I deserve as much. Only, I pray the devil is kind enough to allow me the pleasure of haunting that man. The distant hands that will uncover my monstrosity. My milestone.
The things I bury are the things I, myself, bought.
Yes. It must be buried.
I pack more dirt, more earth, more cover, over my bindings. Over the thing that causes my pain, my grief.
Over the maw of my beast.
I bury, and I bury, and I bury.
The rain starts in, and still, I continue to bury.
It washes the dirt over this grave. It makes mud where soft soil once was, and I love the heavens for this one gift.
The dirt packs down harder, studier now.
It will be difficult to unearth this secret.
Very difficult indeed.
I don’t grin at the thought though. That would be crude of me. Depraved. But I’d be lying if I said that the small assurance didn’t bring me some sort of pleasure. Didn’t ease my mind at all.
Because it certainly did.
A man doesn’t find himself in the middle of the woods, during the night’s vice, alone, for no good reason.
Yes. Not for no good reason.
Don’t you understand?
Terrible things have transpired.
This man has brought his madness out from the ground. Unearthed some horrible secret. Rose the dead up from their slumber. From their rightful, and much needed, rest.
I must bury it once more.
Drown it in dirt.
No one can know.
The cold rain makes sure to sting me as it falls. Gifting me with the knowledge that the rains are not just here to help, but to punish.
After all, what I’ve done is a crime against nature herself.
She has every right to be furious.
But I’m serving a good purpose now. Doing what needs to be done.
When I finish my task, I don’t fool myself. I deserve no reward, no pat on the back, for this burial.
In all honesty, I deserve to sit beneath the earth next to this secret. This shame.
And, one day, I’m certain I will.
But for now, I rinse my hands as best I can in the rain. Place my shovel on my shoulder. Grab my coat, and my hat. I trudge back through the darkness. Back to my car, which will take me back to civilization. Which will take me home, away from this dreary place. This wet, demented grave.
And, once there, I will begin:
I will forget.
And once I’ve forgotten, so will all humanity.
This secret is one I will take to the grave.
Author’s note: written on 2/18/18. Sorry y’all, not feeling well today.