And there I was.
As the eastern wind ripped through my shaggy hair I was faced with a crossroads. Not the metaphorical crossroads of - say - a middle-aged man suffering in that dark and temptuous mid-life crisis, but a literal fork in the road ahead. A four-way intersection surrounded by expansive, rich fields of green grass, a single stop sign and a massive tree.
Now, as a wandering vagabond, I was faced with a difficult descision. Do I travel straight ahead, thereby continuing the path I have travelled thusfar and perhaps experiencing the same insipid sights only to find myself with yet another crossroads just miles away?
Do I turn left and enter a world apart from the bleak and empty one I know and have developed a kind of loving familiarity with?
Or is it to the right wherein my destiny lies? But what exist to the right that is not present in the other two directions I face?
And so I stand at the crossraods and I ponder. I ponder my choices. I weigh my options. No one path seems more promising than the others and no one path seems less. And as I consider what shall surely arise as a result of my chosen course of action, those two figures appear as they inevitably do at various times in ones life. I speak of course, of the shoulder sitters. More formally known as the angel and devil; representations of good and evil. And there they stood, one at each ear, both a perfect likeness of myself but for the halo and horns.
And I wondered... what a strange situation for the visages of my morality to appear. The angel, who was on my right, directed me to the right road. The devil, who was on my left, pointed me in that direction. As I, in bewilderment of their descision to appear now, thought about the road ahead. Who was there to defend that road? To provoke me through logic or trickery to continue my forward path? And then I saw him. Another little man without halo or horns standing at my feet - for my shoulders were already taken. I knew him then, this man was nuetrality. This man was the collaberation, the combination of his two predecessors.
This tiny mans name was conscious.
I hopefully awaited guidance from him but he seemed to be awaiting the same from me.
What a fool I suddenly felt! This dimunitive figment of my wandering mind didn't care which direction I took. And with that realization the three disappeared. I again stood helplessly gazing upon the intersection silently wishing the men would have appeared in time of a greater dilema. I felt I had just wasted them. I felt like a genie had just offered me a wish and I only asked for a glass of water.
My idol thoughts slipped back to the road in a perpetual decline into remorse. If there was one sure thing in my awkward choice of travel it was that that each road did lead to uncertainty.
The tree. Its leaves russtling in the wind were the only sounds that prevailed in this dreary world of abysmall nightmares. What a curious entity the tree was. I then realized why it was placed here. Its many branches were like these very roads and I would choose which to climb and which to ignore. Its green, heart-shaped leaves were the results of my choices. Each leaf could mean a city at the end of each road; or represent the lake I might swim in if I turn left.
But I knew that I was not the first to have these thoughts. A tree is used to describe many scenarios. Its roots being the foundation of many philisophical aspects of life. Sadly I reminded myself that trees are the perfect metaphoric symbol and therefore the most redundant cliche'.
I took a moment to ponder that statement. There were so many things wrong with it. But it was a beautiful over-simplification of that most sought after of answers to the ultimate question. But that question harbored no agreeable answer as it varied from person to person.
Mine was staring me in the face.
It was then that I laughed - a ringing, jovial, dominant sound that I imagine must have reverberated throughout the heavens for it took precedence even over the lullaby of the trees leaves. I laughed because it became apparent that I was trapped in what I will call "Metaphoria." As I studied my surroundings I noticed all the little things that make up the entangled cliche' I had so unwittingly marched into; a crossroads, the tree, and those three little men - one of whom was me.
And so I turned about and left in the direction in which I came.