Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Pain of Atlas (july 2012)

He wakes up and once again the pain is unbearable. Most people have no clue, but he bears the Pain of Atlas-a constant stress in his shoulders. Thats where he carries his contempt. He knows distress intimately.

He washes his face while his coffee percolates. He stares into his fractured bathroom mirror with absolute indifference. His mind races so much he can't tell if he's a genius or a moron.

Large cup, coffee black & strong. The newspaper brings no relief. Addicts stealing, drunks crashing, predators creeping. This is the world. This is life.

He owns a cheap 380, Spanish made. He bought it along with 12 rounds of ammo from some crack zombie. Some days he carries it with him in his coat pocket. Other days he prays that some gangbanger will shoot him dead & he wants no defence.

He finishes his coffee. He opts to leave his gun on the kitchen table with the newspaper. He walks down East 55th Street and descends the stairs to the train platform. The sky is grey, air is wet. He jumps off the platform and walks the tracks.

This is how he gets to work. Its a half mile of train track, broken bottles, random articles of clothing and filth.

He comes to a section of wall where the cave man graffiti declares "Fuck You" proudly. He laughs and remembers Holden Caulfield.

Oncoming westbound train roars.

Gulls screech.

He jumps.

As the train knocks the life from his body, the stress in his shoulders, the Pain of Atlas is gone.

At home, next to his newspaper, gun, and empty coffee cup is a note. A cave man note scrawled on napkin. It simply states "Fuck You".