The day has been long. I’m sick of the city, I tell myself. My weary body won’t hold me up forever. Soon I will look like one of those old ladies everyone pities, until they become one themselves: lonely, back permanently hunched from urban living, weighed down by grocery bags and regrets.
My footsteps echo in the freezing station. I approach the melancholy refrain of a lone saxophone, playing just for me. The old man’s eye is foggy with cataracts, but his melody sees deep into my soul. Transfixed, I can’t help but smile.
“I write because the mundane really is magical.” – the writer
The ferry arrived 20 minutes ago, but I still feel the swell of the ocean. How strange the way we can preserve sensations in our bodies.
It’s the same with you. I still feel you pressed against me, swaying during our first dance. I still feel the lace of your white dress. That was 20 years ago.
I look at the sky. The sunset’s red streaks are like the lipstick marks you found on my collar a couple of years later. I arrive alone at my rental and sit down, regret still pulsing through my body like a violent ocean.
Michael Degnan lives in Peaks Island, Maine. He writes because “it helps him think.”
She lies in bed, 3.30 in the afternoon, spots of sunshine creeping across the curtains, and she thinks about death. She’s not scared of being dead. To be dead is to not be. It’s the dying bit that’s a hassle. She’s not into pain, not into fear, not into leaving a mess behind for someone else to deal with. And besides, she hasn’t finished watching that TV series about the serial killer and the kinky cop. She gets out of bed, 4.10 in the afternoon, crisis averted, and smears herself in an overpriced anti-aging skin serum, from hairline to nipples.
“I write because my brain won’t shut up.” – the writer
I can’t remember when I first noticed the little bird, a wheatear. When the telephone rang it appeared at the window and when I hung up the handset, I would drop some seeds or crumbs outside.
A bond developed between us and mutual expectation. The bird became my companion, and I was its source of titbits. We were creatures of habit, and the little bird became a great comfort to me in my moments of deep anxiety.
The bird will migrate soon, what will I do? I wished the calls would stop, or at least whoever it was, would speak.
“I write to free the souls trapped in the cavity of my imagination.” – the writer
When he says he feels the happiest these days, she can only smile. She doesn’t congratulate him, nor say she’s happy too. Because she envies him. She’s always wondering how it feels when someone’s genuinely happy. She can only dream about it. But when someone so close to her says they’re happy, she suddenly thinks she’s left behind. Everyone she knows has found happiness, why can’t she? Why does she always think she’s trapped in misery? Why can’t she move on? And in the end, she can only cry. Silently. Without, no one knows.
Andaritian writes because “it keeps her sane in the crazy world that seems to always want to drag her down.”