11 October 2013

The Heavyweight


It could be a sitcom except when his stupid suitemate barrels
into Evan's room at almost two in the morning through 
the bathroom they share, I scream and scoot to the edge 
of the bed next to the window, clutch the wool blanket up
to my neck and keep yelling. More like howling, Evan says.

Like one of the lambs that Starling tells the doctor about
in the horror film. And Lunatic Nick from next door just 
cackles and hoots Boo! Boo Paulie! like the genetic fluke
that he is until Evan shoots him a look and tells him
to screw off. I must seem as wild as spooked horse since

Evan approaches real slow, speaking low with his hands
raised in front of him like a grocer in hold-up. Jeezus.
Loosen up a little, Paulie. But, he is almost crooning. It's not 
like he's mad, he just has no clue what to do to the soothe me.
The truth is that as soon as he asks, I understand how acutely.

I wanted him to. He says, you need to tell me what happened.
By now, it's past two. This boy's facing me in his blue boxers.
Bowie's singing "Sorrow" on the stereo and the moon hangs
framed in the room's only window like Evan delivered that too.
How do you know, who can handle your life and whether or
 not you should allow them to?

People talk about baggage like you can fit
your history into a suitcase and if I had to choose
a metaphor for Evan, it'd be an ambulance or better : a parachute.
Shouldn't he know what he's shouldering? Some things hust
all over again when you tell them. So I do.


(page 119, Splintering by Eireann Corrigan.)