Son of Sisyphus

“Oh Sisyphus,
Born into ignorance,
Forced to walk the blade of antithesis,
A breath away from the precipice.
I am here to set you free!
Stuck for eternity,
Cursed to move earth,
Flesh against stone,
Is there nothing else that you know?”
An eye turns in reply,
A forlorn face,
A body strikingly defined.
Over his shoulder his gaze finds a pile of rubble and bones,
A sound, a mouth, a groan,
“Down this hill once stood a home, but that was a long time ago”,
A pause,
As he set sinew against the boulder eternally cold.
The air stagnates as the boy’s eyes lock on the remnants of a life of old,
A search for heaven at the price of a home.
A moment eclipses as the boy frames his tone.
“Brother Sisyphus, why won’t you let that boulder roll far down below?”
The man continued, teeth set against one another, eyes peering towards the crest of his goal,
“Shall I run, shall I jump, what then son, what then?”, he asks, a weary eye on the sheer face of the cliff.
The boy swore he could see within those eyes a coal abyss.
The man continued without pause, “What would you have me do next?”
The boy stood by his side, shaken, silent, for he did not know.
Eyebrows knitted, trying to not let that show.
The stiches loosening as the words became known,
“Have you no other wants not bound to this stone, have you no thirst for real freedom, no worthy desires?”, came the boy’s next question, honest yet hopeful.
The man’s weight sunk, a heavy breath raising him back up,
“This here is my desire, she is a burden, but she is mine”, said he,
Feet dug into the shape of a V.
The boy stared on, at what useless tools that man becomes.
With a purposeful rumble the man raised his neck,
“You beg for mercy and never meaning, you believe me cursed, but you’ll find your purpose is fleeting.”
The boy took a step back, a tongue sought to strike, but found their steps side by side,
Stride to stride, their steps in time,
A rage best his lips and he parted them and cried,
“You accept the pain as meaningful so what, so what!
That you yourself can live in a purposeful world? What selfishness!”
A deep frown creased the man’s worn face,
“You speak of selfishness but know it not, no one escapes this struggle that life has wrought,
No one escapes the weight of this stone, it is a burden you’ll too come to know.”
A heat crawled up the boy’s throat, a line of frozen ants scattered across his coat,
He threw himself against his unmovable shape, pounding against his unwavering frame,
“I am nothing like you! You mock me while captive? What have you? What have you! Have you no fire, have you no passion, would you be consigned to this fate and that of all others!”
Unshaken the man pushed forward, the boy collapsing at his feet, face and earth cheek to cheek.
“I am free, this has nothing to do with me, but everything to do with you”, he grumbled.
The boy brought his knees to the front,
He spit, disgust spreading across his face, and dirt staining up his jeans,
“Well then who do we trust, what’s to become of us?”
A quiet rumble shook the man’s body,
“My Son, I see myself in you,
Know that there is a pain in all things that are finished,
In all things complete there is something diminished.”
The boy felt his lip begin to quiver,
Behind his eyes he fought a raging river,
A scarlet cord beginning its descent from his lips,
He wrapped his anger around this uncaring man like a fist,
He felt hate press against his chest like the man pushed with his ignorant hands,
“You pray, but the seasons continue to change,
Your God has answered you in this way.”
The boy pushed himself to his feet,
Desperate not to be beat,
“You can’t know that… you can’t”, the boy stammered,
“Be the truth quick, or be the truth slow, it is man’s burden to know!”
He stared on as the mans shoulders heaved, for a moment he could have sworn he saw his lip beginning to curl, a shaking within his core, laughter, pain, he couldn’t be sure.
Slowly, the man turned his back to all that he knows,
Placing a hand under where the boy’s words flow,
Wiping from him that scarlet stream,
“Truth is only found where it’s not yet bound,
A truth that bloodies your lips and blackens your eyes my son, is not profound.”
The boy felt the sting of the wound as clear as the cut on his lip,
He stared on stunned, a burning under the skin worse than that of the morning Sun,
The distance between them growing, his tongue tied to his throat.
A mouth opening to proclaim utterances he didn’t himself know.
“I offer you my hands to get you off your knees!
I give you every opportunity,
You say that you’re still happy?
Then bend your arms and grind your teeth!”
Unperturbed by his words or advances, his body pressed to his prison,
The man moved forward.
“Is there always enough will?
One day you’ll have had enough of this hill!”
The boy shouted after him.
He was met with silence, only the sound of the man’s bones squeaking out their desired effort.
The boy moved towards him, the grass clinging to his feet,
Slick from the undergrowth’s mist,
“Sisyphus… Sisyphus,” He exclaimed, he pleaded, he prayed.
None of which stopped his forward claim.
“I swear to you this, we will escape Sisyphus!”
His next step was remiss, it was here that he slipped,
Crashing down the hill,
The wind rushing past a chill.
He rolled, kicking up dust in the stone bearers wake until water began to fill his ears,
Within the pit of his stomach he felt a brewing fear.

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