She died by her own hand, and he couldn't do a thing about it - or could he have?
[ absolute ]
[ a prose ]
It is like screaming, and then silence. And we’re spinning, closing in on the world itself, and everything turns to white light, and I forget who I am, where I am, and everything but the silence, the light, the spinning, and the feeling of completeness.
It’s when I know my eyes are closed that I realize it was nothing but a dream- that you are not real, but a figment of what I vaguely remember used to be. The feeling I had experienced was nothing but a hoax, a dream or a nightmare of complete bliss.
Cold air brushes against my face, and I cannot decide against opening my eyes, no matter how much I would like to. The sounds all start to come to my ears, people talking, music playing. I push them away for just one more moment, as they create an odd noise within me. Irritatingly, I am still indifferent. A stoic, unmoved by often liar’s complaint or the emptiness of my palm, the space where yours should press, in love and in pain, in loss.
But your loss is what I grieve most, the space you left here shalln’t be filled, not with your softened fingertips, or your fragile, nit-picked pink blossoming nails, no, you could never trace my palm again, and so it lays on the seat beside me, indifferent, a stoic. I cannot be comforted, I cannot be moved. The noise sounds distant, now, lost behind my façade, behind my thoughts, behind my denial.
Before me, the ridged aisle of a train. Who knew how long I had been riding it? It could have been hours, days, weeks, or months. I saw people board, people leave, going through their daily lives as they probably had each day, they would never know who I was, or who I had been before I had entered the foldable, golden seeming doors of this very train. They would never know, or maybe even begin to wonder what burdens I had borne.
They know nothing of you, not of your loves of that for little things, like olive colors and sweet summer clementines. They know nothing of what you looked like, and how could they even begin to imagine your beauty? They know not your magnificent eyes – so earthy, just as your personality, and your mechanisms. Nor of your honest-to-God dilapidating knack for self-harm, the darker side of you – the moon – or the burdens you have borne.
No. What they know amounts to not much of anything, nor I, nor you, we all know not.
I hear children cry, their bittersweet sound of laughter. So simple, free. They especially know not, and relief it holds to me to know that they not know.
They are new. They are hope. Oh yes, they are the hopeful, or the hopeless. As we are all. It is pungent in me, the sound, it pulls me back to the spacious reminiscent, of a time where I was ignorant to the vulnerability of that innocent happiness the sound, laughter, releases in to the atmosphere.
It reminds me of you, so innocent and wild with happiness. So destructive in it self, you were so destructive in your self. Your sweet alto laugh, it was so perfect in every way. Perfection, it has no place here.
I stand, shakily now, as the train speeds ahead in a direction I am completely without control of. Irony, I suspect much, to be without control – are we never in control of much? I grab my wallet from the seat, containing only a small wrinkled picture of you, and a few hundred dollars, for my escape was sudden; unplanned. Like your absence, sudden, unplanned, uncontrollable.
I turn to my left, moving towards the aisle, and make eye contact with a small child. Her eyes catch mine. She looks sympathetic as she turns her gaze my way, her eyes, gray like the clouds that hung over the grass out the window, something, in fact like the reflection of water on the opposite side. Challenging, churning, soft.
Here, there is a fine line between water and soil. Here, there are train tracks.
Dangerous, if banded apart, if played with, like a game of chicken. Which leaves me to wonder, Was there never a child who decided to stand on the tracks until the train came hoping maybe to flee at the last moment? To feel that rush? Was there never a person who wanted to stand on that fine line? That risk? The line, that risk between water and soil? Was there never a teenager, so senseless and silent, so brave and undefined, to stand aside the train tracks, and pick a side? Was there ever, he, was there ever she, who saw the death of their childhood friend, standing on those tracks, and hath learned from it? Has there ever been? Will there ever be?
And what if there had not been tracks here? The fine line would fade. Yes, I suppose it would fade, and the fears would too, as the shoreline would move to sand, and the grass would then flow, fit in, and the teenager would not have to pick a side, and he, or she, would lay on the sand with you, darling, and there would be no knowledge of death, or that of his or hers, or yours. If only the tracks had not arisen, if only the train had not come. If only.
And still here I am, on this train, knowing I am a part of this threat, as I was yours, and doing not a thing about it. Knowing that I am the separator, the median, still knowing – and soberly better, now that you have left – the trouble it should cause, if only a child, or a teenager not know better, and not one soul would sympathize my decision to board this train, not under the circumstances. Not under my guilty conditions. And if I should stop the train, shall I be deemed a hero? Well, I cannot.
But the girl with the gray eyes, oh she would be saved, her morality, her name, what could it be? What could it be, her name? I haven’t a clue, but it would be saved in someone’s heart.
As yours has been, my dear. As yours has been saved in mine, and gives me grief and these terrible thoughts, like children losing friends to the now broadened line, or the death of every companion, every one I have ever set an eye upon.
Poor child, then. For we have made eye contact, and if it is true then, someday she shall be doomed, but for now she is just a child, looking up at me with stormy gray eyes and a teddy in her hand. Hold on tight, little one. Please.
Hurt turns to numb like cuts in to scars; as reopened wounds re-heal and pigments work to mix until our skin so feebly rejoices in a mellow pinkish tone. We are reminded of how – slowly but surely – all pain we endure will be briskly reminisced through only a million microscopic salmon-colored spores on our arms, on our legs, lips, mouths, minds. As tiny scrapes bathe us, we become aware, awake, maybe even alive… or something along those lines.