My brain is buzzing, quick and fine, and my heart thumps quietly. Life sure feels like a playground roundabout, colorful and tacky and dinged up and rusty. The world spins and spins and keeps spinning faster and faster. I'm dizzy and I don't know how to get off. Or when to get off. Should I jump? Or should I wait it out? When the others stop pushing and jump on, maybe then -- I will sneak off. The splintered bark below looks icky and painful to land on. It is the antithesis to my shoeless feet. I think I am going to puke.

"John! Look up! Over here!"

There she was, her hair wet and frizzy, and strands tucked poorly behind her ears. Her smile was tangled in sweet, salty sweat that dripped from her cheeks. I don't want this day to end. I don't want to go to school tomorrow. I just want to know -- what does it take -- what do I do -- to make this day last forever.

"What!" I shouted over the noise of my own nausea. It was a blur, but I saw her gesture at me. I saw her jut out a small, clenched fist.

"Look what I found!"

But I couldn't see a damn thing because I was spinning so fast. Round and round and round. Steven was pushing and pushing and I didn't know when -- or even if -- he intended to jump on. It seemed to me that he would go on pushing forever. Did he not see that we were not going any faster? Maybe it's harder to see reality from the outside when you are sprinting around madly in circles. Or maybe it's harder to see the truth from the inside. Maybe I am wrong. I wouldn't know the difference because even though I too was standing out there moments ago, everything is so blurry and woozy in here now. That's all I can think about. My world has become a great big mishmash of color and light.

I can't even begin think about the details of what is out there. Only that it must be better. I don't remember how the trees were arranged or what color the playground slide was. But maybe the inside and the outside of the carousel are in fact entirely different realities. Maybe I am gone. Maybe I have been whisked into another dimension. I don't remember the slide out there being pink. Or it being blue or it being green. But maybe the slide out there exists as all of those colors at once. Maybe shifts in perspectives and my mind are actually shifts in the real thing, and maybe the whole notion of a "perspective" is wrong. Maybe there are so many real and right *things* out there occurring at the same time that our minds cannot comprehend them. We box them up and call them "lenses". What I am feeling right now, sure feels real. I feel sick. But the world out there doesn't feel real to me. It doesn't even exist. I only see flicks and glints of it. I cannot tell the difference between what is real and what is in my head. I cannot tell what color the slide is.

Steven is hollering wildly. He is having a blast. And I think that is a little odd because I am the one on the carousel, not him.

"Steven! Stop spinning please!"

He pushed harder and ran faster, which ordinarily would have made me laugh if I wasn't feeling so icky. He went around another cycle and let his feet leave the ground. I saw him struggle. Physics is a strange beast and doesn't like to be ridden. I saw a boy's triceps flex hard and pull a connected body onto the carousel. Maybe now he will realize how much this sucks. I am glad to have a friend on the inside.