Jun 18, 2009

dispatch 1


It’s summer. The thought keeps hitting me over and over like a tide as I peer from swollen eyes into the sickly orange hued darkness of 3 AM. Streetlight spatters of dull yellow-orange are blood drops on the veil of night. In my hand I nurse a cigarette, hanging limply from my clammy hands still covered in stick of marijuana and reek of alcohol. I don’t smoke. The relentless burn of a cigarette between my fingers always had a reassuring feel, like a lover’s whisper or a cool breeze. There’s no breeze in the pitch darkness of my room and the smoke rises straight up as the cigarette becomes a pyre, its embers the only pinprick of light in my spire. Light from the sun, reflected on the moon from somewhere on the other side of the world passes through the fumes of nicotine. Where would the sun be now? Watching men become martyrs in Baghdad? Hanging over ethnic cleansing in Congo? Lighting the scene of a firefight in Georgia? Maybe the moonlight is the sun’s desperate attempt to tell us, yes I will be back. Yes, it is horrible here and everywhere, but I will return soon. It’s summer. The thought runs through my mind again, vindictive and spiteful. Summer always comes, building slowly through the misery of February and hopeless optimism of April. Before long it’s pressing down on us with the weight of a thousand Dionysian nights of excess and a thousand Viet Cong days of cowering and hiding from the terrifying sun. Summer comes and it rams powder up our noses, poison into our livers, plants into our lungs and chemicals on our tongues and hungry souls into each other’s arms. But for all its promises of pleasure and passion the heat and lethargic days give us nothing but a bad hangover and empty pockets. The cigarette is almost at the filter, which says to me ‘There you are being cynical again’. ‘Look who’s talking’ I tell it. My eyes inflamed with exhaustion and irritation from the smoke, threatens to plunge me into the complete darkness that surrounds me but I force them open, waiting until the filter burns through to collapse asleep. I sit on the couch not far from the mattress I call a bed but I’m faced with the prospect of passing out where I sit, which doesn’t sound like a bad proposition to my head cleared of thought by a night I’ve already forgotten about. Its summer and it’s only the first week. Already I can feel the burden of each day to come weighing on me like each shovel of dirt on a fresh grave. ‘You’re far too pessimistic for such a young man. See, you’ve killed me already. Happy yet?’ the cigarette says to me as the space between its glow and my skin becomes almost nonexistent. ‘And you’re an asshole’ I tell it as I snub it out in the tray filled with countless remains of incense and ash of plant smoked long ago. It’s dark. Different coloured shadows vie to cover the world with the most darkness. I let my exhausted eyes collapse and I fall somewhere between where the sun rises and the moon rules.


  1. That was fantastically written.

    The suns here, shining bright as always. You'll see it in 4 hours or so. Weird to think that theres one moment in the day when both sides of the world are looking at the same thing ... together. Comforting in a way don't you think?

  2. That was by Patrice Case not me!