The Long Fuse

by Elizabeth Kate Switaj

I have heard the very people who make me talk as if explosiveness is something to flee. And I agree. If you are not designed to destroy, you should stay far away with me. I was packed with the desire to fall apart with force and take whatever stands near me with me. It is glorious to bring down something bigger than you are, to be this jammed with energy-to-be.

Someone standing over me once said you can't contain energy, and the people around him nodded. Some wrote notes. But he was wrong. I can feel it inside of me. I will make movement and power and heat. People will aah and oo at what I do. Whole families of them come to see.

I only regret that I'll never see the whole building whole. I'll never know what it is I am meant to collapse. I am sure that makes my end more wondrous, even if I don't understand how.

And maybe I have a second regret. I don't get to count myself down, or trigger my own death. A button's pressed, and I do what I do. It's glorious, but won't the glory go to the one who doesn't even sacrifice a hand? I won't be alive to get it. But this isn't about glory.

It's about destruction. That is my pleasure. I am not its victim. There are no victims of me.