I heart this place. This spot between the dregs of existing and the wanting of not.
You love it too, you told me. Shouted it at me, neigh, screamed it from your saline-filled lungs as you bobbed your chin above the slapping crests and flapped your arms.
I honestly thought you were dancing. Or I would have saved you.
You know me, generous to a fault. Heart of gold. Pure gold. Heavy, expensive, shiny gold. I watch it glint off the surface most days, as the sun fires up and fizzles down. A veritable feast of warm, yellow brocade, edging the waves like some ageing seamstress paying her dues every morning and evening – she’s worn her poor fingers to the bone you know. How about that? It’s her we should have pity on, not you.
Na. You can’t have it – don’t deserve it. You with your penchant for sinister tides and a blaggard heart.
We could have been something, you and me. Gone places. Found friends. Instead, I stole your soul. Ah, well, a place for everything and everything in its place. This is my place, my ‘hood, and don’t you forget it.
Oops, sorry, I almost coughed up a rib then. Of course you know. Silly me. It’s hardly a secret, is it? Everyone knows, they all float down here. Float like the chewed-on styrene coffee cups that make a mess of my home. Their squeaky, soggy edges stinking of last night’s cocktails and charred caffeine, indeterminately branded with a fuscia-pink kiss. Jesus, how did you get so cheap?
Don’t answer that. Let me show you.
You fell for this fairground attraction, wanted to be part of the spiralling, helter skelter hell. Don’t blame me, don’t you fucking dare blame me. I did everything I could to put you off. Warned you against this fake Wonderland. Damn, I even fused the lights for you. Hid that one tiny bulb that would render them powerless, so you wouldn’t see – wouldn’t be dazzled, mesmerised by their twinkling promises. But no…you had to chase the summer, son. Didn’t you? Couldn’t let it go, could you? Had to cup that last little late-leaver of a swallow in your hands. Throw it back to the powder-blue sky for one last waltz. Now look.
I had no choice.
I mean, I thought about it, considered my options, even took a stroll down memory lane – one last hoorah – a dead man’s walk through wonderland – for old time’s sake. But no matter which way I chucked it, it came down the same way. In a steaming pile of fetid corpse-crap at my feet. And these Italian loafers ain’t cheap. Just can’t afford to get them mucky. You get that, right?
What I mean is, if we’re gonna do this thing, you have to know where we’re at. It’s the law.
I can’t make you stay if you don’t know the deal. You can’t have it both ways. You want this blind oblivion, you need to swim on this crimson tide, after all, it’s the only way you’re gonna get home. No one else is gonna drive you.
There, there my vagabond waif. Come, let me wrap my fluid embrace around you, press you to my clogged-up chest and you can rest there for a while. Well, maybe not a while. Let’s see how it goes.