7/26/2004

A chronic lack of sleep

The city that never sleeps. Burning lights, moving cars, human beings moving. I have not closed my eyes in two days, my leg is stiff, my back hurts. The lights burn my face, I'm stressed, my fingers are trembling, my thoughts wander and wonder about irrelevant things.

The blues club is empty. The rooms above it are lighted, that is where they live. I call, and the door is opened some 10 minutes later. Yellow light floods out, and that smell that has always been peculiar to this cuban family drifts out.

I carry my bags in, and greet the old man, hug the old woman and kiss the girl who smiles broadly at me. We all know each other very well, they have seen me naked, they have watched over my bed as I lay near to death. I have seen them cry as their son died on that night so long ago, that night I lay with a bullet in my chest and watched my best friend dead with a bullet lodged in his heart.

Like so many things this day, tragedy is the string that ties our hearts together. And they see in my face that I do not come alone, I come with problems that they do not need. They do not ask questions, and I do not say anything.

The girl looks at me with adoration in her eyes, and I look back with lust in my heart. The father looks at us, looks away and spits tobacco into a bucket. I can still remember her saying but I really do love you, John, shortly before I left the family those many years ago. I remember the shame, I remember the self-loathing that followed. I felt I had slapped the family in the face by not staying, and by not loving their daughter.

I was shown up to the small room with scanty funiture and torn posters hanging on the walls. I opened the closet and saw old clothes. I wore them on, the shirts were a little bit large; their son had been bigger than me. I put on the panama hat we had always worn, that one had been mine. The other one was light brown with the dust of years.

I went downstairs and was given a cigar. It was supposed to be like old times, but they saw in my face that the times had changed, and that things had started to fall apart.

Things fall apart; the center cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood dimm'd tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

16 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tell the story about your best friend, who died, and about the bullet you received many years ago. Also, just how are you and this family connected?

8:47 AM  
Blogger John said...

I already wrote it! You know, I can clearly remember writing about being in new york with this family some months ago. However, I cannot find the entry anymore. It is not in my blog, and I checked my K5 diary, and it is not there either. I'm wondering what the hell happened to that story. Maybe I just missed it, it had something to do with me visiting the club to play music with my guitar. It was on K5, I think. Damn, I'll have to search for it.

In any case, I can tell the story about the family again. I'll do it next post or so.

8:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please do. I have read all your diaries, and i don't remember it being there. Again you are living AND playing in your own little world.
U guessed wrong

11:26 AM  
Blogger John said...

Hi YGW,

I think I posted it as a story. I'll check my laptop for it.

3:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

O.K., I'm waiting.

7:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blah blah blah blah blah.

5:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had a similar story cept I wanted to be with the girl but her Dad forbid her to date someone over the internet. We secretly hung out over ICQ and I pretended I was a wizard while she was a smart and sassy cop. It was fun for a while. We hang out on the ICQ chatrooms and roleplay. You should join us we could always use someone that is good at pretending to be a military man. Maybe you could write my Wizard character into some of your future stories in your blog. That would be cool. My ICQ nick I go by is gandelf2344 so look for me online K.

3:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, in your next story you can play the King of England for all i care. Also, pretend to date Princess Di, it would make for a good story, You also have the right to "really" believe it. Wizard, as in wizard of oz, and the sassy cop, was it played by Zena.

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