There was a glamour to it, he could see that. When he looked through his reinforced window at night, at the lights floating past, fizzing past left and right and up and down at all heights, he belonged to an exciting world, in continual motion, of layers and colours constantly shifting. Without sound, it was beautiful, especially at night – each drone the atom of a chaotic universe of reactions, swerving and bobbing to avoid each other, each object’s sense and avoidance system making proximity a dance of interaction for the gulling eye.
It was like being in orbit in the world of satellites, a busy, dense, individuated, perfected density of ellipses, indifferent and seemingly respectful, darting by each other, diagrams enacted, precise virtuosos.
Each thwarted collision felt like it created a hole of nothingness, like the unwatched wall beside a TV, a void of slack which had to be crushed with light.
At night, the skies were filled, and it was pretty, and intoxicating, not suffocating, or oppressive. Who knew what these fliers had in store – messages, crucial deliveries, or agonies? They were no different to any other form of communication, not guilty themselves, merely flitting robot messengers of faulty human motives, intents and desires. Why blame the sky for what filled it? Why blame what filled it for our destiny, our desperate need to pragmatically accept whatever came next?
The drones recast the philosophy of fundamentalists, it changed the minds of heretics. The sky no longer sacred made the most sceptical soul reflective.
It was not cringeworthy beaches or horrendous storms or years of rampant wildfires that made mentally overburdened first world people go crazy with longing for justice. It was when they lost the sky, the open promise of the literal heavens, that things really changed.
* THANK YOU PTV, AND GPO