A Fiction

February 15, 2011

So I wake up again. I don’t know why every morning is such a surprise. I decide to attend to my hard on since I don’t want to pass up the probable pinnacle of my day. I stare at the ceiling and think of the raccoon down the road, which becomes less a raccoon with each passing day. Flat fur and bone on the pavement, what a waste… Done. Time to get up.

I haven’t slept in a bed in months. My bones ache. Stu is convinced my love affair with the floor and straw mat will be short lived. “Fucker!” I say. He smiles back. I stand up and feel the tightness all over my back and legs. Stretching will only anger the beast.

I take a shower, which is not like me. “Today is special” I say to myself aloud, not completely sure if I’m quoting a line from a movie, or if I finally had an original thought. Getting dressed is exhausting. God bless the mothers who did this for their sons and fuck them to hell for ever stopping. Life is one chore after another. One sock, two sock, a quick drink and go! I’m ready to face the day. I don’t miss them, I think. It hasn’t been hard to stifle their ghosts. The pictures on the walls are replaced by stains made of tears and snot from a previous day. It’s quite charming. I imagine the Neanderthals mourning their dead by drawing on cave walls using what pain had left on their faces. The dishes are piled up, I pass the burden onto Stu. The guilt of not doing them is now his.

I step outside. The air is cool and smells of mildew. My mended bones ache, prophesying a future rain fall and approaching arthritis. Step crunch step. I inhale and remember how beautiful out here can be, until some asshole passes me in his pickup spitting exhaust and indifference all over my day. I should have more faith in people, but they do make it so hard. My legs feel tight as I walk and my stomach starts to cramp but it’s too late to turn around. I look around, step off the road into the brush, pull my pants down, squat and let it go. The purging. A sure way to exorcise the previous day. I turn and yell to the wind; “Stu! Get the leaves!”. No answer. I’m on my own.

I push open the door and it makes that obnoxious yet comforting ring-the-butler sound. I meet a cascade of raising eyebrows , some of which take a moment to glimpse at their watches. Yes, it’s early. What’s it to you? The heat starts to rise in me bringing on the flashes. I begin to sweat the second I see the candy coated bottles. Each jelly bean looking prettier and tastier than the one it rests next to, but it doesn’t matter. I step up to the counter and contort a smile.

“Hey Booster, long time eh?”
“Hmph. What’s for today?”

Victory! I grab my paper bag deity and head out the door. The familiar cracking sound sends a shiver up my spine. “This is the body of Christ”, I giggle. It is the Sabbath after all. I take a swig and hit the road. The gravel feels like home beneath my feet and walking on it leaves me with a sense of accomplishment. The road is so calm and quiet that I can actually hear the nothing. This is what they must hear all the time. I take another drink. The breeze pushes past my face and the sick becomes distant. My hands are still and satisfied, hanging at my sides. Step crunch step. It doesn’t last long.

In the distance I can hear them. The sound of rumbling feet in the hallway. The laughter and the yelling. Now the gravel stirring. I look around and see nothing but the road leading to forever. It gets louder. They get louder. I walk and feel them behind me, ready to engulf me, getting closer with each thump my heart makes. The stillness starts at my toes and works it’s way up to my scalp. My eyes begin to water but I feel good, calm. I take a drink, exhale hard, and close my eyes.

Suddenly I am on the ground and can feel each pebble leaving a bloody trail on my face. I feel burning scattering all over my body, popping and the pressure. I’m dragged. It doesn’t burn anymore. It doesn’t hurt. I open my eyes to see the road. I feel my jaw snap and pull. I try to move it back into place but when I reach I realize it is no longer there. Left behind are teeth and tongue that experience the wind like never before. Hamburger, I think. When I turn my head I hear the rumbling again, only it’s far and in the distance. I focus past the cloud and see the pickup truck, Stu’s pickup truck. “Of course”. I smile with what’s left of my face and close my eyes. Today is a special day.

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