We are in a pipe, caught, feelers hitting the grime, the built-up walls of this cylindrical drop-space. Water streams from above, gets in our eyes, we blink and struggle, try to shake liquid from our insect eyelashes, from our segmented thought-crevices. We re-steady ourselves, steel ourselves for the next rain, our tiny foot-pads slipping on the newly moistened grime, underwater sounds echoing in drips and slides as the reverberation of our legs push sounds strugglingly through our body.
Starting with our antennae, we attempt to advance upward, toward the flash of sky above, despite the onslaught of sewage water, despite the narrowness of our confines, despite the wildcats that growl and hiss on the other side of the walls. Rising, extending bit by bit, we expand with the variability of the arcs our feelers can form. The need to sense -- the physical function of tasting space, feeling time-- requires our wire-thin, millipede-leg-like, guitar-string-like, human-hair-like extenders to: extend. We draw ourselves out, draw ourselves further, in order to experience experience-- in order to sense sense. We struggle against the vise of our consciousness in order to embody our surroundings.
Utilizing every insect muscle, strained past the point of reality, we cry; we listen to the falling pipe-water droplets echo as we cry; we cry so that grime-water will echo. Each droplet sounds until it hits our tiny body with a sensitive PANG-- each one sounds a second time as we shake it from ourselves, continuing its journey downward. The wildcats growl at us from just beyond these grimy walls, as we slowly scrape our way up the sides of the pipe. Menacing, taunting, they growl low and tumble, a rising chorus of annoyed adversariality, of denigration in the face of our attempt at ascension.
Less than an inch have we advanced toward the top of the enclosure. Foreign abstract water-bugs buzz in our exhausted ears as we swell our red insect cheeks, puff the breath required for movement, required even for maintaining this current position.
A moment of quiet as we relax our body, save for the legs: taught, holding us; we are a web of entemological perseverance; the wildcats have gone to the waterhole and cease, temporarily, to taunt us; we replace their antics, terrified, hopeful, with the internal shuddering of physical advancement, the unlikely expression of actual movement.