(In case you didn’t know, I write about people I actually meet or stay with while hitchhiking/walking the country)
The government has Christopher strapped to an operating table with this rib cage spread like a bone flower searching for the shard of God inside of him. They’ll check for the language of God lettered on to his innards or engraved on his ribs; for oddly configured shoulders or a sixth toe shaped like a spear; for a fiery heart or an organ replaced with a sun; for sapphire eyes or inexplicable holes that could hold houses; for time to stop when a particular piece of skin is removed or for stars to cascade out of expelling bowels; for a mouth that knows all truths or hands that can shake the foundation of mountains and women; and for a reclining chair that doesn’t make a sound when it unfurls.
Every night the government rappels into Christopher’s dreams and makes attempts to find a vessel holding God’s power. The government wants it to do whatever a government would do with a small percentage of God. Sometimes they’ll torture him for the information, other times their scientists will run him through tests, and then there are the nights they just tear him open and peruse his wares.
The first time he tells me about his dreams involving the piece of God inside of him, it was 4am and he sat in the recliner, next to the couch I was sleeping on, unfolding and folding its leathery legs until the creak and thwump woke me up. I feigned sleep at first but my curiosity brought me into the reversed psychologist/patient scenario where the one in the chair is doing the talking and the one lying down, half-asleep, is listening. He skipped the Good Morning, if 4am is considered morning, and started giving me examples of what his ‘true self is truly’ capable of.
Christopher, translated as ‘Christ-bearer’ in original Greek, has the power to move the world and part the seas; and choose who lives and who dies; and to decide who will walk again and who will be crippled by their sins; and to choose the color of the sky and to keep gravity working properly; and to let cockroaches survive nuclear warfare and allow beetles to be 25% of the worlds animal species; and to keep writers unstable and normal people normal; and to run a shock and awe campaign on my senses and at the same time be plainly comical in his thoughts and mannerisms.
Like when he started staring at the wall for fifteen minutes without saying anything. He had a reason to be watchful of the wall, Christopher could see a boy in private school attire sitting in a desk facing away from him. It was hard for him to explain that the wall was slowly zooming in on the back of the boys head, because he was trying to use words that had no relation to a film camera.
“The pinhole in the middle is granularly getting more tall than small over the chalkboard in the distance.”
“You mean, it’s slowly zooming in on the boy and nothing else?”
“Yeah, that’s the word I was looking for. Slowly.”
“You mean zoom?”
“Sure, I want to impress you with my words.”
“You’re doing a grea-”
“Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit. Holy shit. holy shit. holy shit.”
The boy’s face, which was revealed when Christopher was looking at me, is reptilian in texture, burnt brown, and full of variously facing horns. The eyes, of course, are ‘endless pools of black,’ and the bearer of Christ thinks he might get sucked into the Abyss through the small boys face. At first, Christopher is only shaking and gripping the seat in a catatonic state of holy shit, but then the cosmic explosion comes and Christopher is on his feet screaming at the wall, the floor, and the sky.
If it’s God inside of him, God is one disastrous motherfucker. Like the flint on my knife I use to start a fire, his rage comes out. This time the flames came with the first scrape, but later in the day I had to hear that screech a couple of times before ignition. It always comes though, frightening to some, mesmerizing to me.
His voice will crack and singe before it begins, but when it does, it is a Godborn thing of ferocity and falling trees. I feel like one of these times the walls will come apart, the lake behind the backdoor will split open or turn red, and the horns of heaven will blow out my ear drums. Boom! Pow! The rest of his anatomy/humanity will have a hard time handling the violence of his voice.
The new Christopher will cry to crush an invisible container between his clawed hands, but he’ll never get it smaller than his torso. His face will have to redden and his body will have to fold in half to handle the exertion of the imaginary task. The brain will tell him that it is impossible feat, to destroy the container, and his hands will take a turn wrapping themselves around his head to squeeze out the blasphemy. He either pushes so hard that his eyes burst or the something inside of him swallows them; his sockets always become crinkled slits of skin in this altered state.
There is something living inside of Christopher, but I couldn’t tell you if it was a portion of God, a sliver of the Devil, or leftover monster from his childhood. After each embodiment, tears will be forced out to cool him down, presumably made up of mucus, water and oil. I won’t leave out the possibility that the cure for cancer (or the devil’s semen) is hemorrhaging from his face. I think about catching his secretions in a small vile and pitching its curative potential to rambunctiously curious onlookers like the good old days of the traveling snake oil “doctors”.
Stay Tuned for Part 2 when I get down to the more earthly qualities of Christopher, introduce his inventions (He made me sign a non-disclosure agreement so I can’t actually tell you anything about them) and the meeting of his omnipotent father.
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