This is another story to a Richard Siken poem. I love his poems. The disjointed and passionate way he writes them. Also, the imagery he uses. had to put a story to what i can see in this poem. I swear he watches supernatural. most of his poems have very winchestery things in them
Beautiful Mind to Nothing
Inspired by the poem integrated: Road Music by Richard Siken
The eye stretches to the horizon and then must continue up.
Anything past the horizon
is invisible, it can only be imagined. You want to see the future but
you only see the sky. Fluffy clouds.
Look—white fluffy clouds.
Looking back is easy for a while and then looking back gets
murky. There is the road, and there is the story of where the road goes,
and then more road,
the roar of the freeway, the roar of the city sheening across the city.
There should be a place.
At the rest stop, in the restaurant, the overpass, the water's edge . . .
They're parked again. Every few hours he has to park and let him out of the car before he acts like the walls are moving in on him to crush him between them. So they park. Lean against the car or sit on the hood depending on Sam's mood. If he even has a mood. Sometimes he doesn't. Today they're leaning against the car.
Dean's eyes move across the land they're stopped in. It's flat. Mostly. They're in the middle of the desert. Almost to the next town. But it can't be seen on the horizon. It's flat too. Empty. Like the future, Dean thinks grimly. Always has been their future. Impossibly unpredictable. A flat flow chart. Or maybe even the flat line of a heart monitor. That's been their possible future, if not what has happened a few times, for years.
"Look. Fluffy clouds," Sam says. His voice is quiet.
Dean almost doesn't hear him. "Yeah, Sam. Fluffy clouds." The first sight of any sort of cloud in a few days.
"We used to look at the clouds."
Dean nods, smiling a very little bit. Today must be a good day for Sam. "We did." He remembers. Laying out in the yard of the cabin or house their dad was hiding them in for the summer. It was when Dean started getting older and could drive out to get food for him and Sam when their dad was gone for a long time. They layed out on nice days and watched the clouds when Dean pulled him away from books. Never took the almost normal days for granted.
Dean brings his thoughts back to the present when looking back starts to hurt. When it goes from clear with happiness to tainted with sadness of how things are now. Even then, he thinks of other past things. The road behind them. From his first memory of Sam to the last day that he knew exactly what Sam was thinking.
The story of where their road has gone. Across the entire continental U.S. with Sam almost always in the seat next to him if not behind him. They've lived on the road. It's become almost symbolic to them. Their life a literal road. Memory to memory like hunt to hunt. They still live on the road. Because that's the only way Dean knows to move towards a future.
Days now seem to be both slow and fleeting. Hurtling down a freeway in hindsight while seeming to be going slow when taken in the moment. It's worse now. Just because the end can't come fast enough while being way too close at the same time.
He looks over to Sam now that his mind is back in the present. He looks good today. Better than most. There's a spark of something in his eyes. Today is a really good day for Sam. Dean doesn't have any more good days. Not since a few weeks ago when this all started. "C'mon Sam."
He motivates Sam to get back into the car. They should be reaching the city soon. They'll stop again at a rest stop before then if they have to. If not, there'll be a restaurant for dinner. They've stopped at many places since he's started doing that. An overpass sometimes. The edge of a river…
He was not dead yet, not exactly—
parts of him were dead already, certainly other parts were still only waiting
for something to happen, something grand, but it isn't
always about me,
he keeps saying, though he's talking about the only heart he knows—
He could build a city. Has a certain capacity. There's a niche in his chest
where a heart would fit perfectly
and he thinks if he could just maneuver one into place—
well then, game over.
Sam isn't dead yet. Though sometimes Dean thinks he is. Might as well be. At least one part of him is, Dean's sure. He's seen enough evidence to conclude the worst over the past couple months. The days where he seems to be empty of all mind and emotions. Where he seems to have a blank stare instead of the brilliant one he used to have. Sometimes Dean wishes he had strapped his brother into the car with him and drove off a pier when he told Bobby he would. Because it's worse than A Beautiful Mind now. It's nothing.
The rest of him is now just waiting for something to happen. His body just sits and waits for something to change. Because it's left behind. Maybe someday something good will happen. And the rest won't be waiting for Dean to do something to it before it'll move.
Dean hopes so. "But it isn't always about me," he mumbles aloud.
It wouldn't be, though. It'd be about Sam. The only heart he's ever truly known and seen that would be worthy of something amazing like that to happen. A mind to be miraculously fixed to its past state of health and brilliance.
Sam could have been his world. He knows this now. Could have been who he stays with for the rest of his life to keep from going crazy with loneliness. Even now, since they've given up hunting, Sam would have been the only person he'd be able to keep around. Should have given it up sooner, Dean sometimes thinks. Then he could have lived the rest of his life with his brother in one piece. It feels like something's missing now. He knows exactly what that is.
Sam still has a day every once in a while where his mind returns and Dean sees what used to be. He sees how Sam could have built cities. Was brilliant enough to do anything he wanted to. That's why he went to college. Sometimes Dean wishes he didn't drag him away and let him have the normal life he wanted. Before he gave up and decided that he'd take the life of hunting he had. Dean was always the condition for that though. Dean had to be there. Sometimes Dean wishes Sam never became so dependent on him.
It's like Sam's heart is gone sometimes. Like he lost it when his mind left. He would still have emotions if he hadn't. But he doesn't. He doesn't have thoughts or emotions most days now. And it only gets worse with time. Sometimes Dean wonders if it'd be possible to put something back. Brain or heart, it doesn't matter anymore. Just something. And if he could, then this horrible game of 'What kind of day is it for Sam?' would be over.
You wonder what he's thinking when he shivers like that.
What can you tell me, what could you possibly
tell me? Sure, it's good to feel things, and if it hurts, we're doing it
to ourselves, or so the saying goes, but there should be
a different music here. There should be just one safe place
in the world, I mean
this world. People get hurt here. People fall down and stay down and I don't like
the way the song goes.
You, the moon. You, the road. You, the little flowers
by the side of the road. You keep singing along to that song I hate. Stop singing.
Shivering is the first thing you see him do besides what you make him do today. And for the first time in weeks you wonder what he's thinking. It's been months since he started deteriorating from the brain out. When the hallucinations went from Lucifer to other horrors. And when those went down to just days of no reaction from Sam between a few days of short answers and eye contact. Now it's almost nothing.
"What could you tell me, Sam?" he asks quietly in the silent car. "What could you possibly tell me to do with you now?" Dean sometimes wishes Sam were still around to boss him like he used to.
He knows feelings are good. It's what makes people human. When you stop feeling you become a monster. Like the demons they hunt and the way Sam was when he didn't have his soul. Sometimes these days Dean even wishes he had a lucid Sam without a soul instead of the silent one next to him now.
Feelings also hurt. They make you suffer and wish things were different. They give you more pain than physical tortures could do to you sometimes. Sam's hallucinations were enough evidence of that for Dean. How he was seeing Lucifer telling him his life wasn't real. That Dean wasn't real. That he was still in the cage. No physical pain ever damaged Sam as the emotional pain has. All you have to do is look at him now to see that.
They've hurt themselves many times over the years. Unintentional mostly, but it still hurt. There should be a safe place in the world for Sam. In this world. In their world. Always should have been. No monsters. No Angels or Demons to try to start the apocalypse that never happened because of Sam and ruined him as the thanks he got. Sam was always targeted for everything. There should have been a safe place for him. He never deserved any of it.
But people get hurt in this world. In the world where there are monsters and angels and demons and Lucifer and hell. Sam was beat over the head with it all. And now that he's been hit enough he's almost to a place where he hits the ground and stays there. Every morning it gets even harder for Dean to get him up. Every morning Dean wishes it were different. He wishes Sam was back to normal. Sam doesn't get back to normal.
The next day is the beginning of the end. Dean keeps driving towards his future. The changing moon. The changing road. The changing flowers by the road. There's no one else in the car with him today. Won't ever be anymore. But he can still hear Sam singing in the seat next to him along with the song he's come to hate. Because of this very memory. Sometimes Dean wishes he can't remember Sam's voice so he doesn't have to mutter to the empty car, "Stop singing."