The new moon mocked us. It blocked out the stars at night, becoming a patch of horrible dreading black in the sky. Many people covered their windows, avoided mirrors afraid to glimpse the sky. Looking only down. I stared at it without blinking, afraid that if I were to look away it would somehow grow closer. The meaning of the word hopeless was now truly understood, we lived literally without hope at all. Lacking a future. It wasn’t quite giving up, there was simply no mending to be done. How does one “fix” the end of the world? The end of history? Everything stood still from that moment, and yet continued to turn. Schoolteachers gave lectures to empty ghostless classrooms. Playgrounds filled with overgrowth. A mother, my neighbor two doors down, who had just had her baby a few days before the event, began to breastfeed a cat. No one said a word. No consolation could possibly be given to, so we as good people kept our mouths shut. When new babies were born, they came out with no tears or breath. A mother would give her child one first kiss, and one last, and the babe would float into the beyond. Joining its brothers and sisters in the clouds with no semblance of God. Clinging numbness, heavy unrelenting static drowned our minds. I felt a cold rod of grief and lacking live inside me, sitting vertically from the bottom of my stomach to the top of my throat. I felt my own insides turn against me. Go sour and loathing with no hope to feed on.
I went to work every day. In the mornings I read the paper and had a cup of hot coffee. I watched the steam rise from the mug and catch the light. I slept eight hours a night. I rode my bike on the weekends. One Saturday night I went to the bar. I met a boy there, he smiled at me and we shared a drink. “What do you want to do?” He asked me.
“What can I?”