I was supposed to go into Astoria today to watch USA beat Portugal, but I’ve been partying a little too hard since school ended and I think it finally caught up to me last night, so I’m staying home today. My friend that I was supposed to go with tells me she’s not mad, which is cool, but I still feel bad, so if you see this, I’m sorry!
Anyways, I’m reading Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison, so this post is going to focus on writing a story in first person. I’m also playing around with streams of consciousness. Hope you enjoy.
The Last Time
I’m eighty seven years old, and I’ve been told I’ll die the next time I close my eyes. I can blink, but I can’t rest. I try to resist the urge to sleep, but it’s so tempting. I’ve told many people in my position say that living to my age is a gift, but it’s a lot easier to say when I’m not the one lying on my death bed. Now, it’s my turn to be fed the lines of bullshit I used to give when I was their age. I’m going to a better place; God’s waiting for me with open arms; Why would I want to stay miserable on Earth when I can finally be happy in Heaven?
My family’s been up there for years now; I’m sure they’ll be able to wait a couple more hours. I want to get out of this bed and travel the world, but I don’t have the energy. I would have been better off dying in my prime. There would have been more of an incentive to do the things I wanted, and I would have had the energy to actually follow through. Now, I’m thinking, fuck it.
Each time I blink, I can sense the life slipping ever so slightly from my body, but not enough to actually worry me. Sometimes, I tempt fate and close my eyes for a couple seconds, the ultimate game of chicken. I pump myself up, telling myself to not be afraid. The drugs I’m on cancel out all the pain, so when I go, I’m going peacefully, and I will go.
But why do I keep opening my eyes? All I do is daydream. I taught myself how to fly in those dreams. I go to my first house in the city; I go to the beach; the house on Long Island; Upstate; in the mountains; to all the countries I never had the opportunity to go to. I picture it all in my mind. I hear the sounds of the waves; the wind blowing through the trees; car horns blaring; hawks screeching; everything. I feel the cold water against my body; the warm mountain breezes; the goosebumps forming on my arms as the beer garden off Steinway erupts into cheers during the fights and soccer games.
These sensations take over and I try to close my eyes, but I soon realize they were already closed, and I panic. But why should I panic? I try to open my eyes in order to stay alive, for one more minute, like that one minute will be the game changer, where I can right my wrongs and come to terms with the god I don’t believe in. Well, fuck it. I’ve done my part. I have no more desires. I don’t wish to be happy. The only thing I’ll miss is the ability to feel. I think that’s what makes life so special.
How long have I had my eyes closed? Why didn’t anyone wake me up? Useless, these doctors are. They just want me to die as fast as possible, so they don’t get attached. They just tell me I’m going somewhere special so their conscious is clear. It never really was about me. Do they really think I’m going to a better place? Well, you know what? I must be alive if I still think I’m alive. I can’t think if I’m dead, right? That is the point…right?