Hurtling At Breakneck Speeds Towards Flourescent Lighting | Teen Ink

Hurtling At Breakneck Speeds Towards Flourescent Lighting

August 14, 2008
By ishouldbesolucky PLATINUM, Corvallis, Oregon
ishouldbesolucky PLATINUM, Corvallis, Oregon
22 articles 13 photos 0 comments

rown pinprick insects are falling from the chandelier.
They kamikaze onto my broken keyboard and land between my thumbs on the space bar.
Undaunted, they hang a sharp left and take off again,
Flying optimistically into the flourescently-lit annals of my father's spotless kitchen.
They are on to bigger and brighter things.

A mosquito whined into my ear.
It told me to trust it.
Its voice sounded like honey laced with needles.
I could not would not did not trust this mosquito.
I caught it with my ironic applause
Trapping it between my palms and sending it
Down, down, down onto my broken keyboard.
It fell between the Z and the X,
Two lonely letters with only themselves for company,
And whimpered to itself, pins and needles.

(Z = honey, X = needles, Z X = mosquito. What is Z-X?)

I am not one of them,
A pea-sized, soil-colored winged creature from above.
I can not will not do not throw myself off of things.
Rocks or paths or planes or relationships or light fixtures.
Perhaps that is why I never find myself hurtling at breakneck speeds towards bigger and brighter things.
Maybe all I require is a little velocity in my existence.
A space bar on which to spring board.
But I am worried so worried too worried
That I may land between the Z and the X
With only a sweet-talking insect for company.

As I gently flipped over my broken keyboard
And the broken mosquito fell gratefully out of it's XZ prison,
I became dreadfully lost in the twistandturn realms of my own broken analogies.
The scorned insect twitched and limped its way across the glass countertop,
And I could not help but gently lift its whispering, whiny form
Up onto the relative safety of my father's inventory documents.
There it has sat for the last two hours,
Quietly cleaning its unnaturally twitching, spindle-thing legs
And watching as dozens of its friends and neighbors
flies and gnats and mosquitoes and birds and hang-gliders and you and her
Springboard off my space bar
And hurtle towards a linoleum-tiled quasi-paradise.

My father may have left the Catholic church at age eight,
But it was certainly not to become Buddhist.
He cheers when he smashes another mosquito between his callused palms.
I, on the other less-callused hand
Cannot even mercy-kill an injured pest bent on sucking my blood.
My many-legged friend and I are silent in the other room,
Wondering what will become of us.
(Or him or them or you or her or we or y'all)
(And what, please, will become of them when we have all been become of?)
I keep indenting as he keeps cleaning.
We are sitting and waiting and wishing.
We fill the emptiness with the click clack of my broken keyboard
Which still bangs out sentences, but only when it really wants to.

Flailing for resolution,
I tenderly reach for my mosquito comrade.
He (she?) tenderly climbs onto my finger and, every so kindly,
Opts out of feasting on a fresh batch of AB positive.
I open the door to the porch and deposit my passenger
On the seat of my not-Buddhist father's lawn chair.
The mosquito's paper-thin body twitches in the breeze
And for a split second, I long for that reassuring combination of honey and needles.

I think he may be dead.
I think he may be faking.
I think he may not be sure whether he's dead or faking.
I think he may be discovering the answer to Z - X.
But there's another possibility.
Perhaps he (she? them? it? we? you? I? everyone?) is doing something else entirely.
Perhaps he is rising from the off-white lawn chair,
Rising from between the Z and the X
And every other letter of my broken keyboard.
Perhaps, at this moment,he is flying with great velocity
Towards better and brighter things.

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