A Story by Peter Rogerson

Might a deity be created by a curse?


There is no night darker than that brought on by the interminable power of a Phligmish curse, and no wind stiller, no sun colder, no winter warmer. There is no contradiction more contradictory.

And I felt the night start to recede. I had felt no night do anything, come or go, recede or approach, for well nigh five thousand years. The Phligm Almighty had cursed me that age ago, and I was immobile, petrified under that malediction. I was as the desert around me and the pyramids that came to be built next to me, and that was all I was. Petrified by an ancient alien curse and yet whipped by abrasive winds, I slowly crumbled. I became, microscopically, diminished.

Except for thought. That was the cruelty beyond all cruelties of the curse. I was allowed by the rancid Phligm and its evil whispered words to think.

Blinded by desert winds and abrasive sand, deafened by the corrosive seasons, I could still somehow think.

There comes a time when thinking is in itself too much. It can drown a man, it can reduce him to a state of emotional stasis. Instead of input to my brain from my senses the only input I could muster was entirely internal. My mind wandered, but not in a sand-blasted world of death and decay �" yes, before my sight finally faded I saw the Giza pyramids being built, heard the cruelties of the slave-masters, saw the enormity of the task and the nobility of the slaves.

I even fell in love. And my lover was perfect, for she was entirely built inside my mind. She had no faults.

And then, numbed by a lust that was empty of hope, my mind wandered.

It created universes inside itself, visions of mighty kings rising and falling, their ways, their lives, their loves and hates. It clothed them and, when the mood took it, it undressed them. It teased them, and it could for they were merely shadows produced by the insanity of a stone prison. My mind examined their women and yearned to reach a finger towards them, the least of mortal fingers, to touch them … but I had no fingers. I might have wept, but I had no tears either.

Once the Phligm returned. They poked around, searching for their Phligm Almighty, and then left with just a couple of dusty grains of his fragmented desiccated flesh, as souvenirs For that was what happened to the Phligm once exposed to the heady atmosphere of my home world. They fragmented: became dust themselves and as seasons added to centuries their atoms blew hither and thither on the wings of puckish winds.

Five thousand years is a long time for a soul to dream, and I dreamed that five thousand years as I stood where the pyramid builders eventually put me, guarding a teasing little pyramid with eyes that couldn't see: blinded by storms and then replaced by painted eyes by a mischievous artist; yes, he painted false eyes on me! I became blind with painted eyes, an insult to true senses.

Wars tore the desert, both real and in my head. Princes, bejewelled and noble as well as plain and ignoble, rose in might and collapsed in blood. How can I make you see, who has never had so long a sleep? But vast ages of human life drifted past me.

I created my gods! With no sensory input to guide me, no wise words from bearded men, no sage nodding of domed heads, I worshipped a deity of my own creation. They say that men have made their gods since time immemorial, created them in alcoholic nightmares and then worshipped them, and in my long night I crafted mine, and learned to sing his praises in the silence of a stone head.

Yes, I worshipped him. I praised him, attributed Creation to him, gave him a history. My god had created me, and in my gratitude I wept dry tears for him.

Death, I know, would have been preferable.

And uninvited and unexpected, the Phligm returned.

They came in their thousands, they crawled around me, saw me, knew me for what I was, blasted me with weapons the like of which I couldn't guess, trying to awaken me. Yet I could feel, all right, heat through the fabric of my curse, vibrations that rattled my marbled teeth, caterwauling screams that ate into my sandstone heart.

The Phligm were after revenge, but they didn't know from whom.

So they tried to awaken me.

And one fine day before they planned to blast my home world to the eternity of burning night they grabbed me in my petrified and dangerously crumbling state and hauled me onto a vehicle the like of which I have never even imagined. It could rise into the air! It could fly!

And only then was my old blind darkness lifted. I heard a voice, whining and wailing and reptilian, calling for me.

Wake up! it ordered, open your eyes! I curse you to see and breathe. I curse you to live!

And bit by bit my eyes opened. Bit by bit my stony heart started throbbing. Bit by bit the foetid darkness of millennia became a new and fascinating light, and with a sense of renewed strength and life I pulled myself upright.

I was naked. No man was ever more naked.

And as a spider, curious and ancient, crept from between my legs and slid onto an alien floor I became aware of a new sensation, for its little feet tickled me where they touched. And excited me like no spider has ever excited a man before. Skin and nerves that had known no touch for five millennia became, in that instant, alive.

I stared at my surroundings. The spider scurried away, but I was surrounded by the hideous alien creatures. The Phligm. Reptilian and with blue veins crossing their faces like lines of grim chromatic dirt, and green eyes holding me in a concentrated stare, as one they bowed down before me.


Then, as one, they pointed at my groin.

And in that alien place and with me unclothed, they worshipped me and called me God.

© 2015 Peter Rogerson

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Interesting, and fun end. Some style probs for me like the And starting sentences. Sometimes that works, but only when essential. They can be dropped easily without affecting meaning in any way.

Posted 7 Years Ago

Peter Rogerson

7 Years Ago

Normally, I am reluctant to start a sentence with "and" but in this piece I think I must have decide.. read more

7 Years Ago

Yeah I can see that as a possibility.

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1 Review
Added on December 5, 2015
Last Updated on December 5, 2015
Tags: curse, desert, time, ages, creation, erosion


Peter Rogerson
Peter Rogerson

Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, United Kingdom

I am 79 years old, but as a single dad with four children that I had sole responsibility for I found myself driving insanity away by writing. At first it was short stories (all lost now, unfortunately.. more..