Words will keep us together

Fiction, poetry and musings by Gregory T. Janetka

A Eulogy for Childhood

Ladies and Gentlemen, thank you for taking the time out of your busy mundane daily routines to come out here tonight and pay your final respects.  Tonight we lay to rest your childhood, allowing it to never rear its ugly head into your adulthood.  No longer will you have to live in a world with summers devoid of responsibility, where chasing fireflies in the dark lasted an eternity, a world where you were able to pimp your ride by the addition of a baseball card in your bicycle spokes, where achievement meant getting your paper on the refrigerator.

Tonight we lay to rest days which were carried on by dreams and imagination, and nights when nothing could harm you as long as you were covered by your impenetrable fortress, which consisted of a blanket.  We lay to rest aimless days of playing pointless games under the sun, marred by clouds which magically took on a myriad of shapes, days where neverland was a place to play by following the second star to the right straight on till morning, rather than a place to go in California where you could sleep in a bed with the king of pop.

With this passing let us say goodbye to a time when school meant learning and knowledge instead of marketable job skills.  A time when it was socially acceptable to freely color outside of the lines, when all you had to do to get a second chance was shout “redo.”  Let us say goodbye to a time when a simple kiss could sooth mental and physical cuts instead of leading to new wounds.  A time when you were smart enough to realize that the other sex does, if fact, have cooties.  And let us say goodbye to Saturday mornings filled with meaningless cartoons, and trade them for Saturday mornings spent dealing with the excesses of Friday night.

We must let this death remind us that we will no longer have to believe in anything and evoke actual trust in anyone.  No longer shall you have to take someone at their word, no longer will you have to see smiles as genuine but instead question everything that lays behind it.  No longer will you have to deal with emotions but instead dull them through the use of drugs and alcohol.  No longer will you have to be curious about that which you do not understand, but rather fear it and immediately denounce it.

Let this death remind us that stars will no longer be something to wish upon, but rather balls of gas long burned out. No longer shall you have to dream but rather resign yourself to the safe, unbridled comfort of the corner office with the view.   No longer will you have to play dress up and pretend to save the world but instead be swallowed by it into the ether of nothingness.

Thus, let us put your childhood to rest tonight and embrace adulthood, for nothing good ever came out of the innocence of naive trusting eyes.  Thank you for coming, goodnight.

– May 2005

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