by Angela Peita
1. Leave this realm as you know it. Watch the world rise around you in a wall of distress sounds. Listen to the loop of news reports, the tick of statistics climbing the chart, the whispers of prophecies to come.
Watch as your world becomes a distant memory, and is replaced with this new dimension you do not know how to navigate.
2. Begin your incubation process. Make your world small. Hide in your dark bedroom, doom scroll through social media, let the panic set in. Become insular. Make the inside of your head the walls of the world. Relive the dreams you had growing up where you are yelling for help but your voicebox won’t make a sound. Listen to the echo of your thoughts bounce off your one sided conversation.
3. Accept your new supernatural state. Celebrate the work you don’t have to do, the awkward social settings you get to avoid. Lean into to the feeling of existing outside the limits, of breaking out of the structures you felt trapped in.
Settle into the quiet.
4. Emerge as your new ghost self. Attempt to hide your surprise when the world begins to return to the way you remember it. Discover you have lost the knowledge to be human. Notice how the sun is too bright, the cars are too loud, the conversation is never easy. Worry that the transformation is complete.
5. Try to unlearn this departure. Put on your favourite lipstick, pretend to care about the return of routine, practice saying your name into the mirror. Ignore the shifting degrees that mean the before will never quite line up with the after, ignore that you now think in before and after, wonder how it is possible to exist in both.
6. Even though you are back now, understand that the leaving was permanent. That you have gone through a doorway that you can’t return to, that you can only move forward.
See how your world is now a reflection, an image on a still lake, a backwards carbon copy covering the surface of where you’ve been.
Angela Peita is a spoken word artist, youth worker, workshop facilitator and live art producer. She is co-founder and co-director of Ruckus Slam, the hugely popular Brisbane slam and arts company.