The New Devil…

The king is dead and for some reason patches of the crowd, that grew larger and louder by rowdy, forceful influence, cheered praise for the queen. Her name in letters on every screen, shirt, and paper stuck to walls like a silent herald. The crowd outside the new cut-outs for the queen, the unshaped but shapely pieces of paper left with the missing shape and to be recycled, look around in confusion with their hands still half in the air, mouths still agape with the fading smiles and farewell cheers look around in confusion. Were they not a moment ago toppling and doing away with a singular figure on stage? Did they not all burn effigies? Burn banners? Burn and curse the ruling name? They’re desperately looking around in confusion as if waiting for someone to laugh off the joke they were all to experienced not to see, but from one face and quickly to the next the panic was pulled in to the vacuum where the joke was absent. Surely as they scratched out the old problem to write in the new they would stop and chuckle, even if they were late, but they actually sang while they raised the new flag, hung the new banners, and ran behind the convoy coming for their neighbor’s homes.

Looking up at it ripple in to dance by the wind, she saw the new colors against the stone walls. Maybe it was dramatic, but the actors and lines all came to stage in her mind and played out the days to come. It didn’t require being insightful or prophetic to swap some names and faces out, and she didn’t know what to do but stand in the used-up street covered in litter. It was exhausting to have arrived here and would be even more so to move forward on top of what had already passed. Slowly she lowered herself on to the ground and rested her head in her hands, feeling no comfort or discomfort from the concrete on which she lay. Music louder than the wind blew over from the migrating and cheering mobs as she thought of nothing. A goblin thrashed in a bird cage of her ribs, and to think or consider what was and would be happening meant throwing meat to it: encouraging the thrashing and worsening the rattling of the bars.

There she remained among the dropped banners, discarded bottles and signs, and she didn’t know if she would ever get up. She didn’t even think she just grieved.

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