Most people, somewhere in their heart, fantasize about leaving their present and escaping all of its troubles. It's the unspoken desire to give up whatever possessions they can't live without, leave whatever parts of themselves they don't like behind, and become a new person, in a new place. I think of this escape fantasy as the mature person's version of the teenager's suicide fantasy; choosing to dream about a change for the better in self and surroundings instead of the meaningless retreat of death.

Most never take any action on their fantasy. They stay where they are -- and who they are -- and wait for things to get better, as they think things should. Too many attachments for them, and obligations, hopes for the future, loved ones, etc. Others, like my two best friends who left town a week ago, actualize their fantasy and disappear, to the envy of those they leave behind.

They really did it, what most of us only dream about when we are at our most fragile (or perhaps our most broken). They decided over the course of two weeks that they were going rent a van for all of their important stuff, get the hell out of Dodge, and go to Texas. The boyfriend threw away every word he had ever written, two or three 300 page notebooks, claiming all of his stories, lyrics, and poetry were now irrelevant and pointless. The girlfriend meted out all of her possessions to her friends, her jewelry box, the clothes her parents bought her when she started college, high-school art projects, dress shoes, and much more. They told everybody they were leaving Monday night, and then left Sunday morning, escaping even the obligation of saying goodbye.

I know what my fantasy is, too, and I've come so very close to just doing it a couple of times. I'm close now, in fact, but I know I have all of this college left, and a girlfriend to think about, and debt to pay, and all manners of other shit stopping me. Still, it feels good to imagine getting away, to imagine a fresh start and a chance to be the person I think I could be. My fantasy involves putting a blanket or two, my CD collection, some clothes, my computer, and a few other things I need into my car, leaving enough room to put the seat back and drive comfortably. I see myself leaving town going North, and merging onto the I-70 turnpike that will take me as far East or West as I could ever want to be. No apologies, no goodbyes, and no forwarding address. The Deftones' Around the Fur is playing on my CD player, the perfect music for violent spiritual rebirth. As the needle on my speedometer hits 80, track 5 comes on. I do exactly what it tells me to, and
drive

far

away.

well, my stomach turned when the blood hit the floor

but in my mind, we were crying for more

the sweat mixed with the oxygen

and the lies into the estrogen

last night we slept in the back of my car

put the emergency break on so we couldn't go far

the sky turned to black and we blended it with the tar

like an artist with his paints, we let it rewind

we ran down the street with the asphalt in our feet

I ran from myself (you ran from the law)

the shoulder of the highway, angled like your tears

made us forget our lives and our fears

and though we've been running for all these years

maybe we've finally gotten away

we've gotten away

we went down the offramp, burning rubber as we flew

your skin started being your eyes

a broken bleeding blue

well, we didn't know what to do

I told you once and I'll tell you again

we've been where we're going

and we're going where we've been

when the clock hits twelve

into the ocean we'll delve

all buried and burned

oh, the world has turned

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