5:12 on a Tuesday. The blaze of another day full of ends, endings. Slant of sun with ember on the horizon and a hushed blue closing in from all corners of the winter sky, which seemed on the verge of bursting into tears or into flame or confession.
The evening weighs on my shoulders. Light rain seeps into skin. I’m thinking of my childhood home — the room and everything in it. Ten years too late, but I wonder if someone remembered to paint over the windowsill. Crayon scribbles from another time. A litany of dreams dissolving like sugar in water.
What Raymond Carver said: There is no God, and conversation is a dying art. I turn inward instead: Hand me the tools to build a monument of this life. Teach me how to be human and happy and here.
The clouds descend. The sky reddens and reflects the sum of our hours. Wordless, I watch and wait, hoping to salvage what’s left of a failed fable.
Listen: whisper of yellow globes lining the empty street. Lamplight shines and softens the unbearable dusk. Voices behind closed doors, turning pages turned to ash. The calm before desolation, before the walls collapse and I’m left standing in the windowless room. The fire behind me, this season already forgotten. My hands no longer my own but reaching, still.