Choices. Chapter 3: 2007.
This one is brief in comparison. From the point of view of a different character than the two previous chapters. In retrospect I realize that male characters in the story are unnamed in their P.O.V. chapters because, well, no one thinks about themselves in terms of names. We’re all “Me” inside our heads. And also, I kind of wanted the reader to have to think and put two and two together in as the story advanced in order to figure out which chapter corresponded to each character. Here death makes its first appearance, if off-screen. They say childhood really ends when you become aware of your own mortality, and I think that can happen at different times for different people regardless of their actual age, and also in widely differing ways.
Ch. 3: 2007.
Twenty-four years remind the tears of my eyes.
(Bury the dead for fear that they walk to the grave in labour).
In the groin of the natural doorway I crouched like a tailor
Sewing a shroud for a journey by the light of the meat eating sun.
Dressed to die, the sensual strut begun,
With my red veins full of money,
In the final direction of the elementary town
I advance for as long as forever is.
I lay on my bed this morning, alone in the house, with my thoughts wandering freely as sleep stubbornly fought to retain its hold on my consciousness, even if just for a little longer. I was in that place where you are already aware of your surroundings, but you’ve still to stop dreaming because you’re half-way under, feeling sort of like underwater and mildly drunk.
My eyes were set on the ceiling fan, attracted by the movement, but not really seeing it since my attention focused on my dreams, full of heated conversations that would have to end some other time because thirst finally made me wake up and realize just what day this is. Today, over thirty years ago, the Lizard King died of an overdose at twenty-seven. Shift tense to present, awake.
Oh, and I turn twenty-four. Just golden. A song lyric comes to mind and it makes me smile and get up in a better mood that most days. “And that’s about the time she walked away from me // nobody likes you when you’re twenty-three” and I am not. Not anymore.
Elsewhere, a friend of one my cousins has just hung himself in his bedroom, while his mom is out running some errands and his dad and sisters are somewhere in the house. I’m a year older today and he will forever be seventeen.
Just morbid enough to stick in my memory, my girlfriend Mayra would quip.