You’ve come to the front door of the temple.
You’ve found the structure read about in diaries, intuited in dreams, a gold-inlaid shack held up by cracked and weathered planks of wood.
It sits on the edge of the known universe, at the point in town where two blocks in one direction is bustling city, where students hide in coffee houses searching online for answers to questions of philosophy.
The coffee house, the university, shopping, streets. And then across one white-lined slab of asphalt, nothing, for no reason a large open field, a line of trees.
The temple sits just in front of those trees, facing the mountain katty-corner to the city. The door hangs off its hinges and is too small to accommodate anything but a body. You leave your belongings.
As you enter, the anteroom is dingy, cobwebs and stench, a row of hooks bolted into walls unable to hold their weight. Off with your coat, with your shoes, with hats and gloves and socks and anything necessary to keep separate you and the elements.
There is only propriety, and a door. The hallway is hospital lit. Take off your pants, your shirt, your undies. Here is a robe. Once you are ready, have a seat in the next room and someone will be with you.
Not uncomfortably so, but soft like a breeze, fresh. But no where to sit, not a cushion or a couch. And the floor impossibly distant from your eyes. As are, you notice, your feet, or more to the point, where your feet would be.
You’re not floating. You’re solid, as is the room. Yet you cannot reach a wall or a floor, or your right hand to your left, your finger to your nose, your tongue to your lips. If you had lips. If you had muscle or a body. You must have left them somewhere, perhaps in the last room you can’t seem to get back to.
But forward, through a pinhole in the universe, a prick in the ether, your inevitable procession.
The air here is static, uneasy, electricity. It bombards you from every direction. Light and sound and heat. And touch. And hunger. And agony. A room too small for any of us, for me.
And bowels. And lungs.
An expanding space of impossible things.