Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Where you sat

There was an awkwardly placed chair in the living room.  Only three of us knew that it covered a gruesome blood stain.  We played charades all night.  We pretended things were different.  We smiled with hooks through our cheeks and attached to strings that dangled from the ceiling like torn spider webs.  The humidity gave everything a moldy smell.  The air itself seemed dead and rotting.  These were supposed to be the vivacious summers of our youth but no one felt very young.  We were twenty something and already silver-headed from our toil, poverty, and fear for our many precarious situations.  Our lives were reflected in mirrors tossed from the twentieth story of a condemned building.  From the porch at strange hours we watched puffs of white smoke emerge from a distant alley like ghosts.  I imagined us beacons on the shore of the river Styx.  Always in our pockets we kept two coins for the ferryman who had taken a wrong turn down 1st street and was late again.

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