a queitening of souls
It was raining…
No, actually I don’t think it was. Stories always begin that way. The weather playing an integral part. The rain slashing at the windows, the eyes to the soul. From what I recall it was a nothing weather day. The ones that blend and blur into the stretching days of the week. Important by its unimportance, as time drips away in huge heaps. How many of those days have I been witness to? Sloshing back and forth in a maddening storm of banality.
There’s that weather again. I guess feelings are easily expressed through the elements.
His heart was like a rock. Nothing meteorological about that only that his mind changed as much as the weather. A rock hewn from some mighty mountain full of pride and ego. It sat there, darkening the earth around it, blocking out the sun.
Bitterness does not belong in the tale, bitter people are weak, and after all I have endured weakness is not a trait within me.
No, I was not bitter by things. Embittering, but not in a nasty way. A useless endeavour besides, for the guard was up now and the rock grew stronger. Covering itself now in a gaudy shell of diamonds, harder than its innards. Tacky as rhinestones, but known to be genuine for its talk of money. I wish he held me that close. Kept snug in his pocket like a twenty pound note.
So that day, a Wednesday…it had to be really. A hump of a circumstance that found me at home. Pacing my bedroom and rearranging my clothes. Perhaps rearranging my life on some distant astral plain. Parting and subdividing atoms into a new river course. One to take me back to where it was brighter, lighter, and out of the woods. But there, in that existence I was to be found emptying draws. Kicking up dust and emptying the bins.
He let himself in. The key to my heart along with the apartment jingled in his pocket, next to his sweaty thigh. Calling out at the bottom of the stairs, I came to see him there. Framed in the hallway. Beckoning. His mind all talk of departure. Of spiriting himself away for a greater good that I had no right to be a part of. But his mouth did not utter these constant thoughts yet.
I would not descend. Calling out that I was busy upstairs and for him to come up. A grumble, a mumble of words strung together in irritation. Yet he came. Trouncing up the stairway like Melelaus into Troy.
The music from my world surrounded us, light strings of an orchestra hastening the end. I knew it then, with that look in his eye. The thousand ships of pain launched to plunder. Endings start at loves divergence. And though I sat and listened, my heart was collapsing. How much is justified? What is dredged up in departure? He touched me, needlessly. A patronising positioning of a hand on my knee. Asking me if I understood, asking me to have self-respect enough to let things be. It was then my soul grew still. Flanked on each side by a hurrying wind. Yet more weather. But it was the eye of the storm. A static electric hum encircled our souls, waiting for the collapse.
And it came. And they both remained silent. Mine, broken and shattered from an arrow to the chest.
His, laying crumpled at the foot of the stair. A twisted mess of bone and bruising. Seeping a love, that was no longer mine.
Of course, the day changed then. Going from the mundane to the maddening as I set ablaze to rival the burning of Troy. Maddening only for those caught up in the chaos. The firefighters and the old woman who lived in the apartment next to mine. The concern for the cat that always used to come and shit on my balcony, and who at times doused with water. I don’t know if it ever turned up, though everyone got out fine. As the smoke filled the sky above me, new clouds threatened to keep me under a strange world.
Fugitive is a rather ugly word. It implies something has been done wrong against a system which is good. What did I flee really, a broken heart. A life smashed into a thousand pieces after years of toil and care.
No, I would not say I am criminal; though my mind may have easily slipped into narcissistic notions of self-survival. But just that instead, a survivor. In the dark and in the quiet, while all around me life creaks to an unknown day; I hear the tiny clink of my soul, slowly coming back to life. Tiptoeing carefully back into the orchestra pit, hoping to make beautiful music once more.
And obviously, now it is sunny; the rains never trouble me.