Sunday, August 8, 2010

Cherry-Red

It's dead relatives people get hung up on when they start thinking about dying, particularly when they start thinking about dying in the self-inflicted sort of way.

No need to analyze this as the connection is obvious, and I mention it only because this evening I will kill myself. No worries. It's not a big deal, really. The thing is, now that I'm going to do it I realize I'd not thought much about Virginia in the days leading up.

But I'm thinking about her now. This moment, duct-taping the garden hose to the muffler of my car, trying to figure out the best way to tape off the two inches or so left open from running it through the driver's side window. By the time she went, I could have carried her under my arm.

And it also occurs to me that there is nothing original about my actions in the least. Typical. Boring, even. I suppose I could skip the letter and that might show a flash of creativity, encourage at least a month of curious speculation. Add to my mystique.

When I settle in behind the steering wheel, the first thing I do is grab the pen and paper from the dash. And then I can't imagine why I care at all, so much of a big deal it's not.

I write things.

There are certain things I can know about how I'm going to die. In this order, I will get a headache, then vomit, then fall into an alternate state of awareness, lose awareness and then death. The trajectory seems boring as I go over it again, and fleeting regret of chosen method skirts through before I remember the best detail.

They say after this sort of death there is often a cherry-red color to the skin, much like the meat at the grocery store which is treated with carbon monoxide for preservation. A pound of hamburger meat. Ribs. Pork chops. I like this idea. It's seems, healthy.

I spend a long, long time deciding exactly where to place the letter.

4 comments:

  1. I think I held my breath from the first word of this to the very last. In fact, I'm still not sure that I want to risk releasing it.

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  2. Thank you very much. I might have held mine a little while writing it, I guess. Glad it done something for you, and I appreciate you reading and commenting.

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  3. different than the usual i love from you. like Vaughan said, there was something about how the narrator was almost flippant about the extreme event he was about to make take place that held me there. i am not saying this very well. just know i liked it.

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  4. Hey, X...yeah, this story worries me a little, from a craft point of view. Some of my stories come out from this different place, but I go ahead and write them. But it's like I know, too, that there's something different at work. But, I'm back at it here at Bent Country. We are all cats, I suppose. I would have rather been a dog, a mutt with a twisted beer can caught in its mouth like a gutted, metal fish.

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