Cigarette glow


May 20, 2012


She coughs in the dark, light leaking through the slightly opened door from the hall where a stair rises to the roof while another descends into the depths of a building dim with worn steps and nightly voices.

The old building is polished and painted, so you almost do not see the cracks or wear, or splinters, the banister smoothed over by the passing of so many hands, coming,but especially going.

She sits on the sill blowing smoke out the window at the religious vista below, street lamps setting to light bits and pieces of brightly colored children’s toys the deep shadows dampen.

She is alone – even when people are with her – glow of the cigarette, sad laugh emitted with each puff of smoke.

There is music, but it is almost always inside her head, songs past and present, but so rarely future, as if the metronome stops each times she thinks of tomorrow or has already stopped and what she hears are merely echoes of what once was.

On this night, no mood shows through the thickening clouds, but the drip of rain drops plots on the sill outside, one slap after another; as she drums the tips of her fingers on the still dry inside sill.

She is waiting for something that might never come.

Someone perhaps.

A sole event she has only a partial vision of, but never clear enough to count on, never detailed enough to predict.

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