So you take a moment to lie there, as the puddle starts engulfing the shards, burying them in a colour so rich, it could only be imagined. And what then is reality, if even the blood pouring out of your face can’t push you over the brink of a self-destructive abyss? You are thinking of Nietzsche and in your concentration, you swallow some blood instead. The pungentness of it distracts you from thoughts of this abyss and how long before it will start staring back at you. You laugh, and splutter. You cough, you spit, you feel the stickiness in your hair and you sigh. You think of what a brilliant sight you must make, in your white shirt and no trousers, flat against the white tiles. Long hair, sprawling the floor, the sun pouring through the blinds and the shining of shards, worthy of an art installation.
There are two postcards, with words scribbled in a hurry, or a strange nervousness. The kind you feel when you write to a person who meant something to you, once, a life time ago. And you know that what you have done is wrong, and the only words that can fix this brokenness are no words at all. And lying there on the floor, watching as a wave of pain takes over your senses, you remember something you read on the Internet, in curvy text mounted on a filtered image of a suspension bridge. Something about always wearing nice underwear because you never know when you might get murdered. But you can’t remember what you are wearing underneath that over sized white shirt and you frown. You frown because you are thinking of your mother. But your phone it too far away. You want to cry, but you can’t do it without an audience. You can’t remember your father’s voice, your brother’s laugh. You couldn’t tell your sister apart in a crowd. But you still can’t cry.
The pain has shifted to somewhere near your abdomen. You can feel your fingers pressing against your ribs, but you are not able to count either. Five. Five fingers, you say to yourself and then utter your name. But you don’t know how many ribs you have. You make a mental note to Google it. There is a giggle but you can’t remember how to giggle. You try again, contracting your face, but there is just a weak cough. Laundry. You were supposed to be doing your laundry. And finish that short story which makes you hate your guts. You want a happy ending but it doesn’t fit the context. You want to work without deadlines but the bills keep piling up. There is a blank canvas leaning against the window and you smile your wry smile. You imagine getting up, pushing your palms into the swelling puddle and stamping it on the ivory canvas, creating dystopian images of beauty. You try crying again. Dismal. Times are a’ changin’. And if your time to you is worth savin’, then you better start swimmin’. You settle to tapping your feet and whispering Bob Dylan lyrics instead. Marilyn Monroe smiles at you from the wall, you smile back.
I am Jack’s open wound. I am Jack’s broken nose. I am Jack’s weak pulse. I am Jack’s dying body, his dying heart. You try to imitate the narrator. And then you think of Tyler Durden, because you don’t need a reason to think of Tyler Durden. You think of all the car companies that won’t recall their faulty products. You think of human fat, stored in plastic bags. You think of film reels, flashing at a thunderous speed. You think of the lady who resembles a witch. You wonder if you could take the world down, if you so wished. You think of how it must feel, to have a gun in your mouth, and if you would also speak in vowels, if you did.
But the sun is down now and the cold is forming intricate veins across the floor as it comes to greet you from under the closed doors. You get up and almost fall back down. You check the time and nudge the mouse, the computer has lit up the darkened room and Good Will Hunting starts playing where it was paused. You sit down and lean towards the tissues box, pull a couple and slap them onto your bleeding mouth. And you snort with unexpected laughter when Sean confesses that his wife used to fart in her sleep. Because life is tough. But you are tougher.