Communication

My notes and a bottle of strong rum cover a battered, dark brown desk with a shallow center drawer that I purchased for ten dollars from a friend who no longer speaks to me.

I sit in an old chair from work, broken backed but cushioned, that I rescued from a journey to the trash compactor. There are wheels on the bottom, but they go nowhere, much like myself in a job that no longer speaks to me.

I’m at home, tucked into a quiet corner in a small, cluttered living room, opting to stay out of a bar before 2AM for the first time in months. The isolation and the dim lights and the stillness and the clock that is also a book, constructed by a friend, grant a peace now where once there was claustrophobia. I miss less and less the cacophonous bar scene that no longer speaks to me.

Instead, I find myself looking out at the light from the street lamps glittering off the few patches of ice still remaining on the road and sidewalks. The stars flicker above the quiet homes across from me and the whirring, crunching noises of solitary travelers driving hither and thither provide a removed ambiance. The night speaks to me.

And my hands pick up a simple plastic tool, gluttonous with ink, that I must have slipped away from work or borrowed and forgotten to return. My thumb and forefinger hold it like a lover and it in turn nestles into a worn and weathered callous where the first and second digits of my middle finger meet. The pen speaks to me.

The notebook lays open without shame before me. It is expressionless, trusting in me to see the value in it, to see the story whispering between its lines, to coax that story out and nurture it into a raw but honest love. It is the bound remnants of a former life begging softly to be given new purpose. The paper speaks to me.

I touch the metal tip of my arm’s (possibly stolen) extension to a softer material and begin dragging it in familiar patterns.

I speak back.

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