Architecture

Red like the sunset

Red like pain

Heads: upset

Tales insane

 

Blueprints mark where we went apart

Ghosts haunting together keep hand-in-hand

Keep quiet but alive, unbroken heart

Don’t ask me why I’m so sad.

 

This calefaction in passing has been hope

That I’m not as stranded as the shore suggests

More importantly I’m not a misanthrope

Like the growing, painful red

 

Be young, be free, be all over

You’re the print on my far wall

There’s haunted prints in the sand coming closer

With the same smell of alcohol

 

Red like velvet

Red like blain

Tails: abet

Head: abstain

 

Wind from the peddles

Accompany me in writing

Not the garden but of wheels

Traveling, not sight-seeing

 

Two buildings at last remain

One to be constructed, the other a passenger train

In that there’s me and that and me

A message unmissable when you’re dreaming to be free.

Six and-A-Half Hours

Last night, I turned off the lights of my apartment and the darkness rung in my ears like a call from an unknown number. I found it a lot and grabbed my keys before stepping in to the light of the hallway, stepped in to the lift, exited the building, and entered the parking-garage next-door to find my car. The engine brought a familiar sound of purpose that held strong as I exited from the opening shutter of the entrance’s eye. It’s funny, but it took cutting four other cars off on four separate occasion for me to recognize the way I was feeling. Once I saw it the illusion surrendered belly-up with the most earnest of eyes: my tight knuckles were a range of sharp peaks against the lights ahead of me, my foot ordered the gas and break with a startling lack of caution or forewarning, and by the way my face kept close to the wheel you would think death was ready to jump out in to my headlights at any second. All at once and at no particular time this state of affairs came to me along with a destination.

I pulled in to this parking lot that’s nothing more than a road sign with the impact of a goldfish memory to rush to a stop with one yellow line almost dead in the middle underneath me. I wanted to get out and slam the door behind me; I wanted to throw my keys at a passing car and crack their windshield. That wouldn’t work, so I next thought about smashing all of my own windows and taking a seat inside the MacDonald’s near-by. From a window I’d wait to see how long it would take for someone to steal it. Twenty minutes I’d wait on the least-compensating metal chair that could have possibly been my date for the night before running back out and throwing my keys in to the driver’s seat. Why I would have ever taken the keys with me I’m not sure, but it pushed me to throw them in a little harder. Perfect form though, and as I let them loose I felt like I’d maybe missed out on something as an athlete. My teamwork was about as strong as a chain of paperclips trying to tow a jeep, but maybe it would have improved if I’d taken up more sports. Just simply trying to figure out which was the result of which or which I would need to have put first to push the other forward was already more work than I was willing to do.

Once I turned the engine off though I just sat in the same silence I’d driven forty-five minutes away from. There weren’t many cars on the road and the passing half-hours dwindled those numbers to practically nothing. I counted the seconds between them and only stopped when I could build minutes. In the back of my head I wanted to go home and sleep but knew I wouldn’t be able to. I felt chained to that bed: rattling up and out to eat breakfast, shower, go to work, and whatever duck-walking parade the route of the day led me along. Feeling tired and uncomfortable with my legs cramped and the soreness all over my ass feels different and that’s really all I know that I want right now. When was the last I did that? When was the last time I was tired because I wasn’t sleeping? Or wasn’t sleeping because I was up?

The sun rise makes me feel sick. I want to puke in the most dramatic sense but that’s not gonna happen, so I’m just going to have to feel like this for awhile. It’s not as good as what I was hoping for, but what was I actually hoping for? Checking my phone with the last of its energy suggests something. This is the first time I’ve realized I don’t have a best-friend in a long time. Probably since high-school when I first found myself without one, but the nights over and that map of memories and what-ifs will have to wait until next time.

In the rear-view I see some kid in a reflective vest get out of a truck and start picking up trash with a stick. In a couple of hours there will be a rotation of people passing over all of this without much thought to anyone maybe having been here this morning. I think I care even less about them than they do me, but mostly everything is alright right about now. The raw and itching of my rose-colored glasses will probably help with the view of the day, but I really was hoping something more would have arrived at dawn.

Blackburn

The class room was standard fair that was amplified by the bored faces and bodies hibernating through the season of a dry lecture.

The voice born to lullaby them came from a man without the inclination to reign his pupils in no matter what eyelids were covering them, and as such his speech persisted on whether he saw a student eating, a phone commanding another’s attention, a head down catching up on the sleep they traded for arriving on time, or even the student near the back with their headphones in.

It was the one near the back, earbuds in and yet still sharing his music with those within earshot, who was managing to attract the attention of someone with his transmission of sound waves like an S.O.S. It was her though, transmission coming loud and clear, that sought saving. She first hoped that he would turn it down after a particular song, and then when that hurdled was clumsily run through she begun hoping someone else who notice and say something. Several of those hurdles were run through like it was elementary school track-and-field, and so she begun to look around at those close to her in hopes of meeting the attention of someone else who was only an ally away from acting.

Still, nothing. The beat of the music mixed and corrupted the lesson like black paint mixed spitefully in with the perfect shade of yellow. She tried to build herself enough of a platform to reach over and ask them to turn the music down, however the butterflies in her stomach drew in moths that ate the fabric of the platform down. She was beginning to resign herself to the situation and theorizing the best course of action. Every seat in the room was occupied even though little attention was being paid the ones in them and every attempt at making the circuit run smoothly failed due to the unwelcome sound breaking her connection. It left her unable to improve the situation or accept it as is.

She looked at the ear buds and wished, more than anything, that she could just rip them out. She pictured it and felt the simulated joy it would bring to her with such authenticity that it looped in her head over and over again. She even raised a hand and pretended to pull on them in a manner which, had any of them been paying attention, would have looked silly to anyone nearby. Right after she did so the slouched Captain Hook to her Peter Pan raised the hook he wasn’t resting on and fixed his earbud. Amused, she did so again. And then….he fixed it again?!

She paused for a moment as her heart did the opposite and soon found the blood in her ears to be almost as loud as the music in his. She then pulled another time and triggered him sitting up straight and pushing the earbud in with noticeable frustration. In silent malice of cartoonish delight, she took pleasure in her ploy and was now ready with the frustration of a half a lectures worth of missed information behind her like an army ready for the final charge.

She knew the extensive collection of three songs he had on repeat, and during one in particular he always lowered the volume (how many times her hopes had soared that it would stay down) only to turn it back up for effect. It was almost admirable enough to grant him some small degree of forgiveness that he repeated this through his outward apathy and spaciness, but his crimes had earned him this sentencing.

The volume lowered like happy feet on a trampoline before she yanked the springs out from the anticipated bounce and his headphone fell out of his ear. He yanked the remaining earbud out of his ear and stuffed them aggressively in to his pocket and pushed his chair back with his standing legs, swung his bag over his shoulder, and exited the class with his burning frustration: hot and justified without any idea of what had occurred.

Light as the air filling the desk in front of her, she happily begun taking notes of the monotonous half, whole, and quarters glacially making their way to her with a smile on her face that would have confused, had any of them been paying attention, those around her. It was a smile that she thought would never falter…

Until the girl next to her started snoring.

Vote

Every second living from the land was wrapped in struggle like noisy cellophane, and when it was discarded it floated gently to the dirt to create a bog of garbage only more difficult to traverse. This is why we banded together to create a mass that floated above all of that. It requires a little from all of us, and like a scale the weight gives more to the side that arrives. Our floating city will be guided by someone in spite of the indifference and apathy keeping you indoors, and it would take far less than you would ever anticipate for the brick and mortar to crash to the dirt and rob us of all the security we’ve enjoyed in the air.

Go do your part, because like it or not we’re all a part of keeping this going. Every inaction emboldens and empowers someone fixated on taking control.

Berlin

The rain came. Pounding kept the quiet away to run down the slopes of rooftops and cascade over the edges. The water pools quickly from a splash to a wave and soon it’s knee-deep and we’re panicking. The streets are like rivers and their currents carry papers and lost shoes like they’re debris; nothing more than the bits in the water of a disaster scene.

This was the forecast, but where are the buses? Where was the evacuation? Why am I awake and watching all of this occur when I should have safely escaped to wait on the other side of this waiting for the magic of elves making shoes to greet me in the morning?

Why is their no dust in my eyes? No herd of sheep to hop alongside towards pastures of blissful escape? On my side, back, or stomach I fail to slip in to the traffic of unconscious dreaming that this series of lanes is reserved for. I’m playing the game of drawing markers in the dark and rapidly losing yards. Panicking, I know that time and inches are running out on salvaging this and assembling anything resembling a night. If it comes this second I’ll get 6 hours …..5 hours ……4…….3…..

At a table and under its umbrella she sits. Her eyes, large and staring at nothing, don’t blink or register the people around her. To her mouth her closed hand is raised lead by the fingernail of her thumb. Jagged and short, its been worked over by stress and nerves that bring her teeth and nails together in unholy and improper matrimony. No effort to make it stop has been executed quite as well as the designs saved to her laptop. The product of hours of sleepless nights and frustrated restarts, her designs are brilliant and poised to astound investors in to supporting her teams project. This was unlike anything she had ever been involved with in a capacity that, as she was realizing now, was changing and moving her towards things she had never fully believed would come. Not a cyclist or patron making a purchase could see the way she felt or had changed, and the feeling ran through her like blood charged with something extra. It didn’t feel exciting or daunting, but instead felt like responsibility. Responsibility that felt for the first-time like confidence.

I would like to visit Berlin, she thought, and stare out the window of a hotel room at it like I was in a movie. I’d paint the room dim and dramatic to feed in to the experience, and I would like to work there and maybe even live. I would like to scan the skyline and find a spot that speaks to me without words but in cords and sopranos. I will take a picture of that spot and then make it my purpose to nestle a structure of my design in it. Columns, arches, floors laid out as perfectly as I can sketch them, all of it assembled to reach up from the earth and towards the sky. I will then recapture the new horizon and my contribution to it so I can hang it on my wall.

The sun, an orange disk, dove in to the vermilion and apricot sea of fiery ink painted across the sky. It may have been closed at this hour but the bakery still provided tables and their umbrellas to tired feet or young women blissful from success. There she re-took her seat from the morning and drew a sketchpad from her bag along with regular and coloring-pencils. To the aurora of scarlet and marigold she wished to bid farewell to the day without concrete dreams or blueprints for the future, and instead created freely images of joy and innocence just for herself.

Rolling In

The face looked down on them with the scorn of passing seconds that went ignored. They each were experiencing time in oddity of slow and fast-moving pieces like a packed highway heading north parallel to speeding mobs running south.

A kettle had been filled and boiled by distracted hands. The early heating of it had been unheard, and the deeper bubbling and tufts of steam that came went unnoticed until its auto shut-off silenced it. The light shone off of the heated, onyx-painted skin unable to catch an eye of any one of the three pairs in the room.

The bright blue pair gazed unfixed on the carpeting. Common geometric shapes repeated over the surface in a mediocre attempt at style, but the grey and black did an ample job of contributing to the coldness in the room: a keelfat of hopes for the coming announcement. The woman’s hair was tied back every morning in preparation for the work-day ahead, however to roots of her hairline were pulled on this day with a harder desperation not typically a part of her uniform.

A window in the back corner of the room had become of great interest for a man who, despite the glistening color of his face, was committed to wearing his three-piece suit. The occasional break to re-examine the room around him was the only reprieve from his sentinel-like watch through the glass to the street below. Like a worried parent he watched over an old bench across the street as it was passed by school-children, professionally dressed women and men, and hunch-backed elderly moving slothfully. Had one inquired, he would not have been able to recall having ever seen that bench before despite its position along his daily walk in to work. It appeared rustic at best and flirting with being replaced and yet the man, a modernist in taste and ideals, looked to it with an affection that seemed long buried and fresh all at once.

When paused from his watch, the man’s gaze would take in the room, yes, but also the woman pacing a large circle within it. Her shoes removed, her stocking covered feet disorderedly made the loop around the table in the middle of the room and the blonde woman seated at it. She was short and so were her steps, with her arms drawn tight around herself she also kept her eyes on the carpeting. One particular spot on the carpet had something ruining the black and grey. With each loop she rediscovered it and begun theorizing its origin. A spill? A defect? Maybe she was seeing things?

Finally, she unwrapped her arms so she could kneel down and inspect the spot. As she did so a phone buzzed to life with a bright screen and sound that instantly refashioned the look of the room. The attention of the three occupants turned towards it with rapt attentiveness that shook with weak-knees of apprehension, and they found the about-face from “never-ending” to “not long enough” paralyzed them all for a moment.

The moment passed and a hand forced to be steady picked up the device of deliverance as they all held their breath to see where the hammer would drop.

A Sitting Dog

This apartment is one large open room with a corridor connecting it to four others: the kitchen, a washroom, and two bedrooms. One of the bedrooms even has a washroom of its own. The walls are white and the carpet a dirtied white, owing that distinction to the sleeping ward beside me on the couch. Generally, I would have enforced my own rule of her not allowed on the couch but she was well-behaved and even more so when she was curled up neatly in to a ball on the grey cushions: I on one side, her on the other.

I am here because my friends are out of town and couldn’t bare the thought of their little girl being alone for the long weekend, and in the long gaps of time between walks in the sunshine that both thrill her and heat her like a fever I can think. After the first five hours of movies, T.V. shows, and wandering through social media I’ve felt like Captain America waking up from the ice to the exile of an unknown space and time. Getting up for food means cracking knees, ankles, and feet, and the night has darkened the apartment and awakened the city lights outside. They’re a wonderous thing the lights of a city, both a beautiful and inspiring sight that is toxic and destructive of the very horizon it decorates.

I was thinking of my friends as I set the Greek food on the kitchen counter (It was take out I was no longer hungering for but I figured I’d eat it at some point.). While they had been preparing to leave they had told me they would be moving out of this place and the city as a whole soon. Three months, as a matter of fact, because they had both found better jobs and could afford to live somewhere with more trees than concrete. I was feeling retrospective now that the hour was late, and I envied what they had and experienced. Both are attractive people, both had followed their goals and let their ambitions guide them, and both were thriving as individuals as well as they thrived as a pair.

I, on the other hand, found myself happiest right now. A visitor in the home of someone else, standing in a dark and quiet apartment listening to the light traffic outside and the humming of the air conditioner. I envy the lives of my friends but also know that I would be miserable in their shoes, and that makes for a strange mixture of emotions. I’ve ducked opportunities and hidden when I could’ve thrived, and that brought me happiness. I’m here alone with someone else’ view, and I feel happiness.

Back on the couch, without food because my stomach feels empty in a way that doesn’t rumble for food, and I don’t know whether to turn the T.V. back on so I sit. No lights on, phone I think still somewhere in the kitchen, and repeat the same disheartening thoughts on repeat. Thoughts of my life, in the past, present, and future, and thoughts of happiness and how I can’t make sense of it, and the thought spinning around and returning like a chicken on a rotisserie of loneliness. I wish I didn’t feel most comfortable alone.

Beside me Mischa makes yelping noises in her sleep and so I reach out to pet her and let her know everything’s alright. She wakes for a second then readjusts to return to sleep.