Visiting Catatonia – A Guide

The Way to Catatonia

How do you get to Catatonia? There are certain protocols that must be followed if you wish to arrive at its walls. Start out from the last place you have no memory of having been. Walk straight for as long as it takes to recover that memory. Walk. Take no vehicle. Once you have recovered that memory, make yourself forget it again. Ask to be blindfolded and cast into the wide expanse of ocean that inevitably must lay before you, the ocean of forgetfulness into which you have cast your memory. (At this point, you should be thinking to yourself, What memory?) If you do not drown, you may find yourself cast upon a far shore, rocky with ragged childhood dreams and deep regrets. Remove the blindfold. Tend to your wounds, lest they become infected with melancholy and begin to fester with unuttered prayers. Look for a cave. It should be barely as large as it needs to be to admit you crawling on your belly. Inside will be black. You will not be able to see, but bring no light. Yes, you will fall and fall and fall. If you are not smashed upon hard-packed clay or drowned in diurnal ponds, you may yet survive for the final leg of the journey. From here, your way will be lit by unimaginable stars shining in a firmament blacker than black, close enough to reach up and touch, smelling of funeral pyres and incense. Look for a walled city in a valley. Walk to it. But I will tell you, like me, you will find no admission. No one is ever admitted. Even those who call it home. You will return disappointed. Battered. Hopeless. Cold. Your world will have been emptied of all meaning.

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