Cartesian Nightmare

        The man found himself surrounded by total darkness, as if one moment he saw light, blinked, and it was gone. "Am I blind!" he cried. He rubbed his eyes. He could not feel anything. He tried rubbing them again. Nothing.
        "Is anyone there?" he shouted. He repeated himself, though this time he noticed that he could not hear his own voice. He could not even feel the vibrations in his throat or his lips moving. He only knew that he had willed the words only moments before. However, between then and now an eternity existed between his thoughts and their execution. His lips began to quiver, or, rather, the thought of his lips quivering sprang from the wellsprings of imagination.
        "Am I deaf?"
        "Why can't I feel vibrations in my throat?"
        "Am I drugged?"
        "Am I in a coma?"
        "Am I dead?"
        "Is this hell?"
        He slowly stretched out one hand, palm facing out. He waved it and did the same with the other. He began making large circles with his arms as he swept round his perimeter. He felt nothing.
        He stomped down, hoping to feel earth, wooden planks, carpet, cement, water, anything, so that he could get some bearing as to where he was. He felt nothing. At the same time, he noticed that he could not feel his limbs or movements therewith. "Am I paralyzed?" He cried out in utter silence all the while the words banged around inside the confines of his mind, becoming louder and louder as words clawed over one another, vying for existence.
        "Am I suspended in the air?" He cupped his hands and clapped at his shoulders. He could not feel anything. He could not even feel his shoulders or the tightening of his hands or finger movement. Only the memory of the thought of moving his limbs existed.
        He even began doubting whether his memory was of a thought or of an action. "If I remember doing it, I must have done it, right?" he thought. "Or did I only think about doing it? Oh God, why can't I tell the difference?"
        "Am I crazy? What if the memory itself is an illusion? Perhaps, there was no action and no idea of the action. The memory is a total fabrication. Reality could reset every moment without my knowing it. There can't be time then. I can't have a past! How can I exist outside of time!"
        He pondered an eternity.
        "If I don't have eyes, ears, a body, whose voice is this talking? Are these my words or is someone or something feeding me these? Who or what is observing my thoughts? Is there anyone there? Oh God, is there anyone there? Can anyone see me? Can you hear me? Is anyone there..."
        Panic set in again for the infinite time. He began flailing his arms and legs about, as if he were treading water in the middle of the ocean and had but only one last surge of energy before collapsing and sinking again into the abyss.
Kyle E Ferguson
Kyle E Ferguson