When humanity inevitably dies off, kudzu will finally win its long-waged war against the southeastern United States. With no one to mow it, chop it, or burn it away, it will stretch its vines across yards and houses, crawling and climbing its way to the pinnacle of the tallest skyscraper. It will be a beautiful and slow march which few will witness. The last vestiges of humanity will revere the vine as both monster and food source, digging up its massive root to roast for a starchy feast for a dying village.
I love watching kudzu. Though it insists upon trying my watermelons and starving the wild raspberries at the edge of our small plot, its rapid pace and natural violence is a wonder to behold. Its broad leaves are a cruel weapon, designed to hide the plants below from their precious sunlight and slowly choke them so they enrich the soil below for the sprawling monster. As autumn comes, and the vine rests, the area it has consumed resembles a zombie movie set of brown and grey leaves.
It is a memento mori I don’t have to explain to the police. I know that when I meet my inevitable fate, the hungry vine will devour my place of rest. While I am above ground, however, I continue to fight the beast and let it inspire stories of the long-abandoned city of Atlanta in the far-flung future of Antitopia. I can’t wait for you to meet my characters among the vines of the ruined city. Like the vines, the story grows rapidly, changing its course as needed to thrive, and killing off that which struggles beneath it. The Deadlands await.
That’s it for this week. Thank you, as always, for being readers.