Half-formed memories take the shape of water before dripping down my forehead like I’m in the throes of a fever. The duvet has me buried. The more I twist and turn, the more delirious the situation. The more the sweat pours out of me. Sadness rises through the floorboards; lodging behind my ribcage like the sounds conjured by the chattering teeth of a piano. All the black teeth. In no particular order. The dust about the bed refuses to settle. It dances to the schizoid tune of the imaginary piano played by a drunken Tom Waits. The rain soothes my head, but the clouds outside the window move like treacle, or gloopy blood squeezing through the pinched veins of a drinker who gets through two packets of Malboro Red a day. It agitates me immensely. There were dreams of the dogs. Darcy jumping on the sofa like a monkey, and Teddy growling protectively over his favourite toy as the sunlight in the old house shone upon floorboards illuminating the many hairs residing there. Dried puddles of piss, too. And the odd turd lurking in the corner of the room. A siren wails, causing my brain to shrink. The radiator needs bleeding, and I must remember to take out the bin. Life is so trivial; the avenues that branch from our actions as meaningless as leaves falling from trees, and yet what I would give to right the wrongs shadowing my every move, to soothe these heart-shaped bruises. A gust of wind whistles names I can’t make out. The outlines of words blow down narrow streets, mirroring the soda cans floating through overflowing gutters. The world and everything in it is a sinking ship, vanishing down a cosmic plughole like a spider with no legs.