Not long after waking, I walked her into town. It pissed down with rain. Didn’t stop the entire day, which somehow eased my soul yet drowned my heart. Returning home avoiding the main roads, I took the longer way back through the winding alleys and side streets getting soaked to the bone. Drying myself off with a towel I sat in the nude by the window of my room. The blinds were open but the sidewalks clear. The steady soundtrack of rain hitting the glass reminded me of my teenage years. Happy years mostly but I always remember the rain and how it represented a desperate longing for something out of reach. Still out of reach… Those years between childhood and adulthood comprised endless walks around town with Jimmi discussing whatever new literature or music we’d discovered while keeping an eye out for beautiful girls ready to take us to another planet. The girls never came, but the ideas we shared lasted for decades. The rain always soaked us. It channelled our inner melancholy at not having what we wanted. The buildings are mostly the same, as are the pathways, but the old days are steadily slipping away, and with each year that passes, they become shadows by the side of the road, as do we, eventually. As I walked with the kids having just started school, I hummed a song about Motown junk and remembered what it felt like to be further removed from death than I am right now. It was a sobering thought. One that made me wish for a drink. I had several cups of black coffee instead. I still napped, though, and when I awoke, it was dark and raining, and the world and everything in it had sunk to the bottom of the sea, leaving me shipped wreck with these thoughts tightening around my neck like a noose.

X and I: A Novel and A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon UK

X and I: A Novel and A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon US

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