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Edward Coles - Jordan, 14 Apr '13

                                                                                PINK MOON        

                A thin white dust of snow littered the concrete path like an overspill of Styrofoam balls. Summer had her hands buried deep into the lining of her coat pockets and her chin pressed tightly within her pashmina scarf. It was the first bite of wind she’d felt in a while. She had been holed up with her friends for several days and the concept of loneliness was already foreign to her, much in the same way as privacy. She could feel the cheap red wine rust in her veins as her body told her “too much” and in truth she was ready for the crackle of vinyl and the promise of fresh sheets and a shower. The week had been fun, she guessed, she’d certainly felt closer to her friends than ever before, even though they all went back for as far as it was worth remembering. ‘She guessed’. She’d been guessing for a while now, living in absences with everything held at an emotionless distance – whether or not this was deliberate she could not decide.
                It wasn’t a particularly long walk back to her house, enough to take the bus - but she guessed she wanted the walk. The cold air made her eyes glassy and occasionally she had to blink furiously to catch the water forming along her lids. The din of distant inner city traffic consumed the airwaves around her but the path that lay ahead of her was surrounded by parkland, and within eyeshot there was a lazy brook where children would often be seen playing, though they’d be at school at this time of day. She guessed. She wasn’t quite sure of the time, but she knew it was the 15th of February. She couldn’t always be sure of what year it was though, her head was often stuck back in the 1960’s, before she was even born.
                Summer could feel the claustrophobia of youthfulness shedding from her every angle and with every insipid step she took, the world took on a more familiar feeling and she took her first real breath of air for days. From out of nowhere she felt overwhelmed at the breathless ease of the faint snowfall and the slate grey of the sky. The clench in her stomach – Summer often found herself weeping for no real reason, and she could never quite work out whether she would be weeping for beauty, or for sorrow…she guessed that there was some compromise between the two. All she knew is that she was very sorry when she reached her front door that her walk was over and that she must again disappear into the walls.
                The heating had been off for almost an entire week now and Summer could hear the house groan into action as the radiators cracked back into life, and she felt much the same. The kettle jittered on the spot as the water steamed and bubbled welcomingly and soon the kitchen was greeted with the smell of tea. Summer retreated to her room upstairs. A wide room with white walls meant that it was often brighter than the world outside and it often appeared to unadjusted eyes to have a ghostly glow about it. Summer thumbed through her proud collection of second-hand LP records until she settled on listening through Pink Moon for what was now an uncountable time. “Saw it written and I saw it say, pink moon is on its way”. She let out an exhausted but contented smile and fell onto her bed. The sheets were cold from privation of use but the coolness on her cheek was welcome and she closed her eyes and imagined she was still outside on an effortless walk, with the sounds of Nick Drake overpowering that of the exhausts of one thousand cars.
                After several moments of another world, she reluctantly sat back up and began to take off her clothes to get a little bit more comfortable. It felt good to get out of her clothes, she’d only meant to stay for one night so she had not been able to change her clothes for days and she’d appreciated the idea of clean underwear in a way she never considered worth noticing before. She unclasped her bra and felt it fall clumsily to the floor and just sat there for a moment, bare-breasted in the pearl white of the chilly room. She couldn’t help but feel like an illustration, of pastels or watercolours. Her mind was still a convoluted collage of the past few day’s events – the haze of alcohol and weed still occupied a small corner of her being, despite the cleansing walk and the wonderful clunk of a familiar guitar bouncing across her walls. Her nipples were hard from the cold so she threw on an extra large male t-shirt that fell to just below her upper thigh.
                She slid off her skirt and underwear, which fell limp at her pale thin ankles. Looking at her thighs, she could still make out the small thumb-sized bruises scattered across them from the distant and removed sex she’d had at some point last week. At least she guessed, it could have happened back in the 60’s for all she knew. It felt as if the past week was not real, a familiar feeling. She was almost certain that man who had shared her bed did not really exist and her bruises contested her own existence. At least that’s how it felt.
                She turned over the vinyl and remembering her tea, slid between the covers and warmed her hands against the steaming ceramic. The tea was perhaps the most wonderful and delicious thing she had ever tasted and she felt it nourish her metaphysically. In a way beyond words, she felt herself heal with the rush of warm past her lips and the sweetness on her tongue. The room was slowly warming as she skimmed her legs back and forth against the mattress in complete comfort. Once the last of her tea had been drunk, she let the empty mug rest on the bedside counter and almost immediately fell into a dreamless sleep.

Comments · 1

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  • Nayomie Heathcote said...

    I really like this. It got me really involved with Summer's world and I like the whole 'she guessed' through-line and that you didn't overdo it. It reminds me a lot of the summer before I left for uni so I can really empathise with what's going through Summer's head during this narrative which is maybe why I like it so much. Either way it's really good!

    • Posted 7 years ago