Thursday, August 08, 2013

A door, creaking shut

I’ve started sleeping in other people’s houses. My daughters’ rooms are splinters I can’t get out, doors creaking shut. It’s an endless awful sleepover.

Most of my zucchini went soft before I could eat it, thank you very much.

But maybe you’re right, maybe I need to be more practical. Or maybe I just need a good fistful of my neighbours’ pills, all gelatin and hardcore opiates.

I’m not sure I’m hardscrabble enough to survive you.

A hundred dead grackles, dark dusty brown feathers, on the ground in the yard three doors down. Not sick, not injured, just…unable to fly. And, then, dead.

I’m no henchman.

I have to decide. Do I build a proper hidey-hole, a dragon-hoard, a domain, and, then, defend it from desperate feral boys that I dimly recall from my daughters’ classroom photos, or, worse, don’t recognize at all?

Do I keep going as I have been, not acknowledging your misery, and accept my death how and when it comes?

Or do I spend what time I have left spying, a pile of ground glass trained on our tower of wind?

Why do you keep writing?

Part of me wants to know if you put them – those boys – in the ground. There’s no bigger fuck-you to your childhood, to the world, than to bury kids in your own back yard.

And even if you didn’t kill them, I wonder if some part of you didn’t say, “Four fewer mouths to fill. Four fewer enemies,” when you found them.

Fuck. Knowing that you – and others like you – are out there is what made me lonely.

What were you before?

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Or, if you prefer, the audio version...

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This is part eight of the exquisite corpse Darryl Joel Berger and I are writing. (Darryl's got a list of the other seven parts here...)

I stole the hundred dead grackles from a news item in today's newspaper

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