My Shadow’s Name Is Odium

The last moments and recollections of a dying man who desperately clings to life to finish his own elegy.

These wounds only hurt when I breathe. So I cut off my air supply a little at a time to dull the pain. I remain motionless…my best rendition of a corpse is stellar…almost absurdly lifelike. Disillusions prosper under this decadent state of disrepair. I’m noticing that time seems to stagger, though I’m not quite sure given the ins and outs of my consciousness.

I’ve also noticed that when I breathe, more blood rushes out of my body at a faster stream. So I’ve decided to oxygenate my blood with deep breaths. I thought there’d be a doorway. I was told there was one hidden behind the opaque conscience and setting amid nightmares and fog. What if there was a doorway? Would it be locked? Could I find a key? I’d probably be too weak to knock, much less break it down.

Whispers told me it was a journey back to birth. Whispers? Or maybe my omniscient self. A witness to this end.

The blood still flows fast and free like the trickling of a water hose as the last of the water makes its way out of the dark tunnel; the way the water slithers through the grass and finds its final resting through the soil and among the roots of life. Though this red substance reeks of iron and encloses my aura in a crimson diagram.

I really wanted this to be slow; a memory frozen in staggering time with enough red stuff to paint my requiem on lonely hills of gray and purple star-strewn eulogies…as my heart receives this oxygenated blood and pumps faster and harder, an echo of an orgasm unleashing the torrential seed of life, though this orgasm of the heart would expire life rather than create. It’s funny how life and death are polarized views of (in)humanity yet linked with the same sinew and marrow.

You know what else is comical? I’ve said so much without opening my mouth. I had this girlfriend my senior year in high school who used to worship my mouth. She said it was perfect, the lips, the way the gums divided the teeth with neat, pink crevices. She was even intimidated to kiss me. It wasn’t long before my mouth was considered just another weekly ‘Sunday Night Movie Special’…left in the ‘What You Missed Last Week’ category. That tired old “Nice Guys Finish Last” quote strikes again…nothing more than a fuck you from the degenerate asshole scumbag that tallies up his sexual encounters with women using an app for his goddamn iPhone. “Want to tally up your sexual encounters of women with daddy problems? There’s an app for that!”. 

I’d much rather have my eyes complimented.

Another ex-girlfriend (or was she just an admirer?) said I was born with Johnny Depp’s cheek bones. Clueless I became once again; I had a hard time accepting compliments such as those. When she caressed my face, was she showing affection to me or Johnny?

I remember riding the commuter train to and from work, and as we passed the back roads and hidden, junk-wrought crevices of the urban decay, I remember seeing small fires under bridges covering drought-dry and poisoned levy creeks; small fires that tried, in vain, to warm hearts and give solace to empty souls on the verge of that uncanny divide between reality and full-blown insanity. It’s easy to judge people of these caliber, given their susceptibility and overall gullibility to others with more in their pockets. The urban jungle that they stalk could possibly be home to a few insane physicists driven into a chaotic mind fuck by the String Theory and mass consumption of Red Bull.

But what is really important anymore? What matters most during the now? The end seems so close, so near, if I had the strength I’d reach out and seize its somber embrace. The end…how are we at the end when no one knows not of the beginnings? I guess I can muster up what little strength I have to give the gist of what once was….but since it really does feel like the end is nigh, why not indulge into the meat of the story? The cold, dead, tainted meat. Where old ghosts roam and new suitors reign…

_

I met her at a small get together at my brand new apartment. I was 19 years old, had been single for the better part of the year, and had no intentions of fiddling with the strings of another pointless relationship. I had all but given up on the dating endeavor until my buddy, Ezra, brought her, and two of her friends, over that night. I wanted her as soon as we locked eyes (and I knew she wanted me too by the look she carried in her gaze). But being the nonchalant, obnoxious, son-of-a-bitch I had grown accustomed (forced) to portraying, I shone her on…I gave her pieces of me.

As soon as she walked into the door she navigated her way exclusively to my side, sitting uncomfortably close.

“Hi, I’m Candace,” she blurted out semi-drunkenly.

“Hi…” I told her my name.

We gently shook hands (fingers) and I continued a conversation that I was having with my hippie-esque drummer comrade, Basil, who stopped by unannounced because he just happened to be next door buying weed from his dealer. Within moments of continuing on the essential need for more aggressive back-beat drumming in our new song, Candace pulled a 40 oz of Budweiser and a few cans of the same from her purse and offered me one.

“We stole these from a party we just came from.”

“Thanks…” I said grabbing the luke-warm can from her.

To say that I was rather surprised would be an understatement, yet, I was equally entertained at the thought of being able to spend more time with this creature of wonder.

Basil began to nod off into the aphotic clouds of Funyuns and orange soda but it didn’t matter anyway because I almost innately began to shut everything and everyone that was in the room out of my active thinking. Something was telling me that this was a biological act…something primal. She had my amygdala on full-throttle. I still question, to this day, whether it was the stolen beer or just her natural essence that I was drunk on. Much like the many questions that plague theologist and scientists alike regarding God and Evolution…I may never know nor become satisfied with any answer.

Once she had my undivided attention, I was as vulnerable as a flailing trout upon the riverbanks of grizzly country below the skies where eagles roam. I felt like a ball of wet sand gently resting in the palm of her hand. It was her choice to close her fingers around me gently or crush me apathetically. However, I felt rather serene in her presence. What she emitted enraptured me and scented my incredulous heart with a blanket of billowy, radiance. I felt indestructible and the feelings of susceptibility waned like dying embers in a Winter hearth.

The night continued on with her still implanted within my cross-hairs. We talked, laughed, looked each other up in down, and eventually sat close enough so that our legs touched; as if to verify what we were seeing was real. Surreal is the perfect word to describe the amazing, electrical charges we shared through our gallant irises. I didn’t want to leave her side…and apparently she didn’t want me to either.

As a few people began dispersing from my small apartment, she took her cue to round-up her friends and take leave. She mentioned going to another party to put in some face time. I began to bid her farewell when she asked me to go with her. Reluctance became a passe, alien-like reaction almost instantaneously and I agreed to accompany her on this strange endeavor. Strange, in essence, because I never attended group gatherings under strange roofs of people I’ve never met nor know nothing about. But I was drunk on the image of this beautiful girl and was willing to risk my awkwardness and my own personal lack of security to stay in her presence a little while longer…

_

Night and day have collided to produce this strange place that I now lay. The nausea and dizziness come in droves. But I don’t mind the small reminders of  mortality. What better way to appreciate  that life once coursed strongly, and with much verve, through veins and arteries of a gift from the stars.

The end of a life-cycle is tainted with too much morose, debilitating, weakness. Rejoice! For our bodies shall once again become one with the earth that spat us out! Rejoice! For where one pile of dying mass expires, a new one is created! Rejoice…except if your demise is by your own hands.

They say the skin is the biggest organ the human body contains. Along with the liver, I’ve found it to be the most vulnerable. In fact, I found myself contemplating which one I hate the most in order to get to this point in time. There’s the liver that regulates most of your chemical levels, protein production for plasma, creation of bile, etc. It is highly regarded and considered to be one of the more important, functioning organs in your body. Then there’s the skin which is probably the organ more susceptible to harm than any other. Three layers of the stuff and each layer functions differently. This star stuff is insanely mind-melting! Needless to say, skin won. The liver would be very instantaneous. I wanted this to be slow. How else would I be able to speak my own elegy?

It didn’t hurt at all. Although a tad bit gory, I made a game out of it. How long could I withstand the uneasiness of digging into my own wrists with a sharp razor blade in order to inter them within my flesh. The first razor slashed through the epidermis and seemed to only agitate the surface. As I watched the blood plume through the small opening, I found myself traversing through giant blobs of erubescent rain clouds. With each step within these crimson pouches a light mist of red brushed my face. However I was neither precarious of my endeavor nor timorous at the output of my bodily fluids upon my bare chest; cascading into the half-filled tub I lay in. 

I began to slash again, putting a bit more pressure with my thumb and forefinger. The next seemed to triple the size of the first cut and the out pour of red stuff shivered me up and down my spine. Maybe that was my ghost leaving my body in one unforeseen, vaporous huff; a ghost removal of sorts. I could see my bone and it was as “bone white” as they say it is. I began to clench and then retract my hands, making very tight fists as to whiten the knuckles of my hand. After I few times of doing this I realized that they began to stay white. I feared that the use of this hand would not last much longer so I began on the other wrist, this time only using one perfect slash. Upon the  driving of the razor across the second wrist I realized that I accidentally cut into the bone, leaving a noticeable scratch upon the radius. It quickly filled up with blood and became irrelevant. I dropped the razor, feelings of an accomplishment like no other radiating through my body. 

Now I lay here in this crimson sea to await an ending. What type of ending? One where consciousness is no more. Where the sensations I felt leading up to this exact moment in time cease to continue on. By expiring my aura on this plane of existence, I can bring solace to withering hearts. My own included. 

I think I’m almost there. The tub is filling, leaving only my head above the diluted, ruddy water. My breaths are also a bit more shallower. I can feel my lungs shiver and quake at the effort of producing more breaths. I feel sad for them. It is a battle they will not win no matter how hard they try. I do feel honored that they continue to fight for my well-being. No questions asked…just an innate, working tool to bring precious moments of life.

I’m feeling a bit tired. If you give me a quick wink or two I can continue where I left off. I just need to close my eyes a minute to rest and collect my thoughts. There is so much to tell, most of it unworthy of repetition. I just need to close my eyes. You understand don’t you? Of course you do….but I can’t, its too risky. I must stagger time a bit more. There are no other chances to bring closure to this misery. I can sleep when I’m dead.

 – END PART 1 –

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