A Few Short Words

Dense Not Thick




Sometimes I take cigarette breaks I don’t really want just so I have a good reason to be alone. A lifetime of tiny deaths seem worth the price of a little isolation. It’s not that I don’t like people but I don’t want to be around them when the cost of even the best interaction is deep and swiftly taken, leaving me shucked. It’s nobody’s fault but mine maybe, for feeling myself so seperate from the rest. Sometimes I just need a minute, to recalibrate, breathe, and become human again in my own way. One day I’ll give up. 


There’s no such thing as villains or heroes. Life homogenises us all, the best you can hope for is digital folklore, to become a prize that supersedes your self, otherwise — outside that internal — all that’s prepared to see is a measure of awareness, the stark mind put against social scale. What do you weigh when you wear the world on your shoulder or stand astride it? The same worth, I’d bet, as any scion or scoundrel. We are the same, you and me and them, isolation and extrusion, thought and deed, writer and reader, we are every single I.


Suicide sticks his finger in my beer, swirls it around, then pops it in his mouth down to the last knuckle. I motion to the tender for another and we transact without incident. ‘I fucking hate you,’ Suicide says, ‘even the worst of them are better than you by an immeasurable margin.’ I just want to drink in silence, sit in silence, live in silence. Suicide looks at the decor and snickers. ‘Drab isn’t it?’ I don’t say anything, he knows what I’m thinking. ‘Maybe on the way home I’ll push you into traffic.’ I wish he was dead.


I go there because she always lets me cry afterwards, passively lets, and her detachment is a beautiful thing. She sleeps more often than not, reads if she’s still wound up, but never asks me why. Not once, not even after that first time. She doesn’t ask me to leave either, or stop. It seems cruel and isolating, it’s not, she isn’t shaped that way, her lack of action is acceptance. I don’t love her, but I love her for that. In the dark, after I’m done, we hold hands beneath the covers and dream separately, lying isolated together.


I was born underground. Every day I dig up to street level and pretend I’m not filthy. Most people don’t look or do but don’t see. It’s fine, I tell the curious few, and pluck at my skin like an orchestral string. I can witness safely for a while but over time I will always ferment. What present sweetness I carry turns sickly and certainly heralds some odorous signal of abandon. A thing the lizard brain knows. Isolation is a protectorate and I often carry some with me. Though it bears a fascistic weight, it never fails to comfort.

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