You go to Macdonalds with two dollars in your pocket and a desire for something hot in your stomach because you haven’t eaten since 10 in the morning, and you are absolutely starving.
You slide your coins across the counter to the cashier with her hair in her black cap and watch as her tired eyes ask you to leave a tip. She has a crucifix peeking out from underneath her collar and as she pushes you your change and forces a smile, you turn and leave with an empty pocket. You’d like to think she would have looked after you in gratitude with the money clutched in her palm like a lifeline that you’ve strung to her to hang on to, but she simply sticks it into her pocket and turns to the fat-fryer.
You’re rowing a boat.
The water is cold and it laps and laps and laps high above where it usually should remain, pooling slowly around your waist, but you keep going and the boat eventually falls away beneath you with your hands still pumping away in rhythm. (one and two and three and one and two and)
The waves engulf you all together, they drag you down somewhere to the bottom of the ocean and while you swing wildly through the currents for while, you come to a stop because, all of a sudden, you realize you’re dead. (sort of.)
Dead in the sense that you’re not breathing (and who could? You are under water, after all), but at the same time very very much alive, you tell yourself, because your senses tingle just so, and dead people don’t tingle, do they?
At this point, you’re plunged into an immense blackness of sorts, (your thoughts fail you at this point, you’d much rather be satisfied with feeling rather than thinking) everything ceases to be of matter as you drift slowly towards the endless, spiraling bottom, your arms ballooning above your head, lost creatures that they are.
The end grows nearer, you can see it now, a brilliant pool of light (funny, you could’ve sworn you were in complete darkness just a moment before,) and you reach out your arms towards the glow, thinking that maybe Jack Dawson got it right by drowning himself after the Titanic sank, and that simpering Rose was the one who really lost out.
(You jump, I jump, remember?)
pick pick pick pick pick,
went your nails against your skin,
and you didn’t look at me long
(we were never enough)
“we could’ve been something great, you know.”
(your eyes your eyes, how have they never lost their effect on me?)
my gaze ghosts over your face,
gaunt and tired,
and it feels like the old times when i worried for you,
(when i let myself worry for you.)
There are broken pieces of glass torn paper blowing around in the air, non-existent wind carrying clouds from my breath, and I’m on my knees. (My dreamland is barren, I am too tired to fantasize.) I am hunched over a canvas, there are cubes of glass and pillars of sand, and for a while I’m alone, singing softly to myself. Somewhere in the distance there are waves. (I am a dreamer, devoid of understanding. I float in this atmosphere of sorts.)
And then there you are, in the split-second only possible in the subconscious, right behind me, your hand on my shoulder (I tense up on your touch, you unsettle me.) “Now, what’re you doing all this for?”
I turn you but I can’t see your face. I feel your presence instead. (your breath your breath your hands on me) “Don’t waste your time, little one.” Your voice is in my ear. I reach out for you. Your knuckles brush my cheek. (Always, always too free with your touches.)
“I’m fixing things,” I say.
“Were they things I broke?” Your laughter echoes.
“Perhaps.” I don’t look at you. “Perhaps they were things that were already broken before you.”
“Stop trying.” You’re far away from me now. (Your voice is smoke, it wafts away from me.) And just when I think you’ve gone, you’re back up behind me, and your fingers find their way down my spine, counting each bone one by one. “I’m not worth your time anyway. Or at least, if you tell yourself I’m not, then you must be able to leave me be then.”
“You’re not real.” It is about then that I realize I am dreaming, or even if, if it was reality, you wouldn’t, shouldn’t be next to me. You’re across invisible oceans; we burnt down bridges with the words we did not say. (You leave with the tides that carried you with them.)
“I’m real here. I’m in your mind. And you can’t lose me in your mind.” Your fingers reach the end of my back. “You can try, but you won’t forget me.” (Your words are only whispers in my ear.) With one last brush, you’re gone, and my world collapses.
Cold skin on cold skin, I remember you that way. You are more in dreams than in life. (You are mine to hold. Whether I still want you or not.)