Random – 1997

Posted: April 4, 2011 in Random Writings, Somewhere in between phases

Inspiration looks at Anna and says, “Uh, hey, I’m going down to the corner store for a six pack and some smokes.  You want anything?”

pretty colors drawing

Anna with the pretty colors on the outisde

 Anna looks up at Inspiration with big, hungry eyes and replies, “Always.” She reaches out for Inspiration, trying to wrap him up in one of her warm, needy, body hugs, but he moves away.

“So you don’t want anything?” Inspiration asks impatiently.

“Not from the corner store,” she says.

“I’ll be back.”    Inspiration is gone. 

Anna knows he’s lying.  Just like his brother, Music.   “God, the things the three of us used to do together”, thinks Anna.  “What a whore I was for them.”  But now they’re the ones always sleeping around.  Who needs them really?  Anna convinces herself she is much better without them.  Now when she dreams, it is peacefully silent, and all her images are just manipulated visual regurgitations of the familiar.  She paints all the bright pretty colors on the outside of her body and leaves the inside rooms sparse and neutral.   

Anna rides the bus home late at night.  She imagines the other passengers must think she’s just like them: lonely, drunk, and homeless.  She never imagines the other passengers are just like her.

Drawing - darkness

People on the bus at night look different

People on the bus at 2:00am look different than people on the bus during the day.  The faces look a little distorted, the skin tones remind her of spoiled meat in a deli case.  Maybe darkness has a weight, and people continually in darkness become altered by it in time.  At home Anna looks at her face in the mirror, wondering if she has spent too much time out in the night.

 But she likes traveling at night.  Sometimes she pretends she is Darkness, and night is her job.  She has to show up for 12 hours or so and just hang over the city while Light takes a break.  It sounds like fun, but she worries about vacation – who would cover for her?   Would it pay well?

Her real job is watching television.  She used to hate TV, but now she watches it all through her shift and then some more at home.  In some ways she feels more connected to everything.  She knows a lot of other people are watching other places and that makes her feel safe. Television is one of the few peaceful and unifying pastimes left, she thinks.   She used to be all alone at her job, but now there is another person who is watching television, too.  They watch different shows.  When she was there by herself, she sometimes wished there were someone to talk to.  Now, she realizes how much she enjoyed being alone.  He co-worker doesn’t say much to her anyway.  The each wear headphones and watch their own television while typing on their own computer terminal.  It feels a lot like a science fiction novel about an oppressive society enslaved to technology.  Anna thinks she would do well in that society.

After her coworker leaves, Anna runs around the office, walks down the halls throwing kicks, and forages through the secretaries’ desks for food.  One secretary always hides chocolate chip cookies.  Anna takes one each night and is very careful to return the cookie tin to its hiding place. The secretary has hidden the cookies in different places, so Anna thinks she must know.  At first she felt ashamed, but now she does it to prove a point.

Once she came to work after having drinks with friends.  She was very drunk  and so she just lay there on the floor feeling the office spin.  A movie was on television: A woman in a dress  with a hundred stuffed hands sewn on to it danced while a voice chanted: “Get your hands off her, Get your hands off her.” 

Anna didn’t get any work done that night, but got paid anyway.  At first she was ashamed by this, but then she decided it was just a larger version of stealing cookies from the secretary.

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