Lines

He is back from the war. A temporary thing, a snatched mercy, a future memory to conjure.

Sunlight enters the room through the louvred shutters, breaking up the milky morning light like knives. A line of brilliance lies across his face, illuminating the lines around his eyes, between his brows. His face is tanned by the powder flash of the gun he mans. She lies on her side and watches him.

“Don’t stare so.”

She places a hand onto the cover that hides his chest.

“You were in my dream,” she tells him. “Last night, I dreamt of you.”

He doesn’t move, not even his eyes. He lies still beneath the cover, the shaft of light slashing his face.

She presses on with her telling.

“I dreamt that I was making you smell my hair aggressively.”

“You wanted me to be aggressive? To smell your hair aggressively?”

It’s as though the voice comes from elsewhere in the room, he is so still.

“No. I was aggressive. I demanded that you smell my hair.”

Her hair was loose in the dream and smelled of meadows. She wishes he would loosen it now from its braid. She wishes he would touch her.

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To Help You Breathe More Easily

She sits at a window and thinks.

They are all wrapped up the same. We are all wrapped up the same. Stamped and labelled, rewarded with chemical bliss that masks the reality of existence. Take the muscle tension, take the distraction, accept that feeling is inconvenient.

Like automatons they move through the day, playing out the actions required to maintain the illusion of normality. The insides of their mouths are black. The windows to their souls are glazed.

She knows the root cause of this. Why can’t they see it? Why deny it, if they can? Do you put your faith in Freud, or Jung, or Berne? Behind the pure white veil, do you believe in anything?

If she sits in her chair, with ten minutes to make a diagnosis, is it unreasonable of her to ask what you would like her to do? Is it unreasonable for him to take the chemical path, to move you through the door?

Do you believe in anything? Do they? Find a window with a view of the sea. Find a chair. Sit at that window, sit in that chair. Look at the sea. Let the sea draw you out to the horizon.