Primitive Painters

In each breath, I’m somewhere else. Never really here. Never quite there. Right now, I’m walking down the street in the old town with the university campus looming ahead. The art studios are behind me, sitting on my shoulder like a devil whispering into my ear. It’s cold, and I’m wrapped up warm. I haven’t eaten since yesterday, but as long as I’ve got my cigarettes things will be fine. I’ve received a text on my phone—a brick that can neither access the internet nor play games. All it’s good for is making calls and sending messages. The days of smartphones are years beyond this point, mere totems that have no form. The text is from a friend asking me to join them in the pub, but I don’t have any money. Won’t for at least a week. Perhaps they’ll take pity on me or maybe I’ll just spend the next few days in bed, reading books and breathing in the particles of dust that float about my room. I miss these primitive days the same as I miss the primitive painter I once resembled. I miss rearranging the dust and having the time and serenity to admire my handiwork. The buildings are grey, as is the sky above, but the dreams that come and whip me up spit me out in a land of unrivalled colour. There’s paint beneath my fingernails. When I bring them to my mouth, I taste what it means to be alive.

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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