A jaded old detective, call him something authoritative and off-putting, like McMurphyman, shows up at a flashing, nighttime crime scene. He raises a leg over the crime scene tape and stalks into the mash of clues his eyes are so adept at finding. Time passes. He observes. He queries. Young beat cops scratch their foreheads, try to sound forensic. He grimaces, tries to sound interested. He rocks back and forth on tired, wise heels. Morning comes. He went home. Couldn't sleep. Suspects needs faces, names. Downtown. He slips wrinkled, knobby fingers in and out of scene reports. Old arrests. Outstanding warrants. Suspects take on faces. Doors are knocked on. Heads are shaken and nodded with annoying, plebeian believability. Time passes. Heels ache. Our detective narrows the noose. Follows two hot leads. They putter, die. Darkness. Can't sleep. He wakes to a knock on the door. Officers brooding outside his door. Summoned. Dresses. Downtown. Under the lamp. First is casts no shadow off him, but onto him. Dark on his shirt, like the confused grimaces that infiltrate his old, sagging face. So he did it after all. Who would have thought to look for yourself as lead suspect?
The crime scene is your life. Blaming others works only so long. Eventually, truth comes knocking and you open to it. You see the light right in the darkness. You did it. The tape on the asphalt looks just like you. The crime called "your life so far" looks just like you, so far. Hell, the ultimate case: big people made of air and carbon blaming Everything but their bigness for where they end up, and where they don't. The hardness of heart the only thing that makes divine light hot, makes heaven hell, the transparency of graced repentance the only thing that makes divine light bearable, makes the heaviness of sin the lightness of new being. That same light, mistaken for infernal, hitting a wall of reckless, self-righteous freedom, heating up like the sun on solar dishes at desert's midday; that same light, taken for eternal, hitting a window of unrighteous freedom in wrecked grace risen to new life, cooling all things therein in crystalline perfection like The Nutcracker at the midnight of a child's mind.
You were born alive. And born to live. You were not born to die. So who said you could stop growing? Stop being mature and start being alive. It's your birth right. Or, otherwise, it'll be your birth wrong. Here I stand, I can do no other. Thus, remember, spake Zarathustra, the loser with a billion faces. Over ten billion served up, pwned. "This is the life I like, now leave me alone." But the first draft of everything, spake the Prophet Hemingway, is shit.
It takes a life to live a life. It takes a whole life to live a whole life. It takes all you have to be all of who you are. And even then, it takes what you don't have to be all of who you should be. It takes a life to become what you will be. And it took a life to bring you this far, to promise you that much farther in the light that bakes or brightens, depending. It took a life, His. It takes a life, yours. Stop calling dying a living.