He is surrounded by the corpses of those who had once been his fellow competitors. None of them had taken much notice of him before the death match had begun. He had been smaller than the rest of them and wasn’t heavily built like them. Yet he was the victor while they had all met death’s cold embrace. Most of the crowd just stared at him in shock while some, probably gamblers who had bet on him as a joke were applauding, bemused grind on their faces. He didn’t care what any of them thought. He simply walked back through large doorway that led to the subterranean area of the arena. Back to his cell to await the next fight. The next struggle between life and death.
I long ago got used to the size of my cell. Confined spaces have never bothered me. It’s my fellow prisoners that cause me the most angst. Someone new was put into the cell next mine and by some demented schedule that only he understands he begins to randomly smash his head into the wall that connects our two cells. He’ll do this for somewhere around twenty minutes at a time. For a time I was sorely tempted to kill him but I realized that if I did that then someone new would appear on his place and I would have to vecome accustumed to the existence of another all over again.
There’s too little light to see properly,
But he goes on, undeterred,
The light appears eventually, as it always does,
Beckoning him to come closer,
He hopes that this is not all a trick,
That the universe isn’t toying with him,
The door is open,
Just slightly but that’s more than it ever has been before,
What he sees on the other side is not what he expected,
He doesn’t know if it’s what he needed,
It is simply there,
And he has to make do with it.
The act of attempting to solve the various problems that we face in life is the measure by which we are taught to calculate how fruitful a life we have lived. It is the model of the American dream that is and has been used as the measuring stick of accomplishment in this culture when it comes to problem solving. To rise against the challenges of adversity and overcome them through means of one’s own making. While this is all well and good for those who are capable of engaging in this culturally prescribed struggle for accomplishment and recognition, I feel that this model of mission for success undermines the true learning experience that can be gained by engaging with a problem; the potential to make mistakes and fail. It seems like the optimal goal to strive for a completely successful venture but if you don’t misstep then you won’t have learned anything from the problems that you try to solve and if you don’t learn anything from the experience then you’ll be even more ill prepared for the next problem that you come across.