“Man is sometimes extraordinarily, passionately, in love with suffering…”
There is no life in this place; no vegetation; no predator or prey; just the shrill roar of industry like inaccessible noise rock. We sit, you and I, on the porch of this tumbledown house, smoking and sharing a bottle of rum.
The starless sky and oddly shaped crescent augment the bleakness of it all. Our eyes have grown hard like dull, brown stones and our hearts, harder like a cinder block ensconced in a rib cage.
Motes of dust scratch our faces like tiny razors cutting skin, but not deep enough to draw blood. We buried Mark on this day, last year and since that tragic day, weather and wither have adversely affected us. The weather inside reflects the sudden, drastic change of the weather outside – arid and decaying. And like the trunks of aging oaks, the wrinkles on our faces create folds that embody some nihilistic wisdom – something gained after some remote in our minds switched off sorrow and gave us an apathetic, grainy screen.
Words mean nothing now and silence haunts, and so, we drink to feel something even if it’s self-pity that punctures the very essence of life. We don’t greet each other; we’re like exhausted workhorses, but the irony is that we haven’t found work since our little cherub left us.
We’re living off what we’ve saved, and the money leaks like water from a broken pipe. We don’t love each other anymore, but we still persist because death creates a strange bond. One that makes two people live together though they paradoxically died together a long time ago.
© Nitin Lalit Murali (2018)