Contentment is a trap. The subtle kind. Lulling you into complacency without notice, warning, or mercy. Contentment is not malicious. Not a lovely scent meant to lure in prey for the plant to snap up, not for a purpose. No, it just settles down around you, dancing like dust motes in a sunbeam and you find out too late, those motes are ash and you’re being preserved in the negative like the hollow impressions in Pompeii. The passing of time creates the illusion of motion, the shift of the grey ashes thinning the memories of the time you moved with purpose through the world. The flavor of the ash on your tongue is the flavor of discontent, but it is so familiar you may think it is contentment for awhile and wonder when the fire turned so sour. When you remember the flavor it is hard to know which way is up and you hesitate to spit into the air for fear you are not facing up, but down, or sideways. Limbs are heavy and unwilling.
If you find that spark, if a single fleck of fire kindles somewhere in you. Move. Move in the wrong direction. Spit. Above all, do not think too much. You will imagine the world has changed. You will imagine it wrongly. Move again. Move until you drag yourself out of the ashes and flounder on the shore, wondering why all these people stop to stare at you and you wonder if when they look, they see a grub emerged from the earth. They may. But it is up to you whether you wipe the ashes off of your fragile new wings and beat them against the air, bidding them to lift you higher, or if you lay down once more, under the sun, and think that perhaps, you should nap.
Thievery abounds. Find the circle here.