Jay Sjoberg

A Note from Nobody

Dear Fool who finds me,

    There is nothing waiting for us out in space. This alone I may promise you as a stranger. I will not give you my name, for who I am is of no consequence. No matter who I was at birth, or where they took me, the lesson remains objective.
    I write to you from an empty vessel, floating through the outer space with which you’re so obsessed. It is near empty, this space. The only thing here is my empty vessel and the note I’ve written. I am not here, for I do not exist. Upon swimming out into this empty, it emptied me out. I am gone, and my words are all that is left.
    I repeat: you will not get my name.
    You will, however, get my story.
    You will get the pieces of it that matter.
    On the border of empty, I once stood on solid, green ground, among many curious fools like you and me. The ground was soft and snug and made to hold us, yet we looked above and wondered what waited there. Some particular fools banded together, and they resolved to go beyond wonder. They wanted certainty, as we fools do.
    They got to work.
    They tore fuel and forge from the ground that nurtured them, and they aimed an unholy weapon at the sky. They called it euphemisms such as “rocket” and “spaceship.” I have made use of “vessel.”
    Make no mistake, it was a weapon.
    More fools banded together, myself among them, and packed into the vessel. It was then filled by life and comfort, provided from the ground we loved. Our love fueled its flame to combustion, and it shot us off into the little lights that waited. There was no explicit direction togo. We hurdled toward the unknown, ignoring that we brought it with us.
    As the vessel’s sails caught wind, just as fast the breeze died off. Like any boat would, ours continued forward with the current. Yet there was no current. Our eyes were wise enough tosee that much. If we harnessed our foolishness and opened the window to feel it, we would find nothing.
    There was only black, speckled by white.
    No stars.
    Just color.
    Without my fellow fools, I would have believed I was crazy watching it dim.
    It took no time at all to lose the light. As it went, we went too. The life and comfort that filled the vessel died. You may think that I alone survived, but I remind you again: I am nothing. The sky is an illness of nothing that only the ground may cure, and if you choose to venture upward, I assure you that you will catch a cold, just as I did.
    Please, for the love of us fools and the ground that nurtures us, stay planted. Nothing awaits you from where I have been. At best, you will find other notes telling you the same. At worst, you will write them yourself.
    Never forget that our vessel was a weapon.
    Though we pointed it at the sky, it shot back to kill us, the fools.