January 16

Birthday of John Carpenter, director of Halloween, The Fog, and other cult classics

 

You wrap your fingers around the bars of your prison cell.  You want to shake the bars, tear them from their moorings in the cement floor, bash your head against the metal in a fit of impotent rage.

Your memory is a fog.  You can’t remember why you’re here — what you did to them, they to you.

But it is natural that you should hate the guards, the unyielding system that put you in this place, the free people that same system hopes to protect.  When you think about them, you understand the reason for the bars.  If you escaped, you wouldn’t hesitate to hurt them all.

Your fingers tighten.  The bars become a throat you wish to strangle.  The metal becomes soft like flesh.  It dissipates into a fog.

After years of confinement, the bars and brick and concrete are a fog you can pass through.

The fog has an unearthly glow.  It follows you as you walk through it.  You wave your arms like a desperate swimmer; the mist curls, but does not clear.

Although you cannot make out shapes, you sense life in the distance.  A handful of people, huddled together in dread.  They are survivors.  The only ones left — and you hate them.

The wall between life and death is a fog.  You remember which side you should be on.