Sunday, December 20, 2009


I am stuck
In this crusty white T-shirt.
The seams are
stretched and brown.
I can draw a road map
on stains from
years ago.

This collar is ragged
stretched like a taffy
of a warm childhood memory.

It still fits
Nestled to my shapely body.
Showing me warmth
while the seasons wither away.

My bodily protector will outlast
all of the world's nations.
This slab of fabric will prevail,
coupling me in its sleeves of plush.

But it is just a T-shirt.
Some ragged piece of cloth--
A smelly flag of futility--
A covering
so tattered and worn.
Keeping me very

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Patient 86

So I finally awoke in a strange sweaty bed that wasn't mine. The room was foreign as well. Where the hell was I? A lone clock on the wall said 6:30. That was all it said. 6:30 in the morning. Maybe. There were no damn windows in this hole. Even if there were, how would I have known if it was dawn or dusk? The seasons acted so strange lately. I sat up and noticed I was wearing a hospital wristband that was speckled with maroon blood. Was this a hospital room? It sure didn't look like one. There was only a single light illuminating this place. A flickering dated 60-watt bulb, I presumed. My eyes slowly but surely adjusted to the low light. I continually wondered if it was night or day. My next order of business should be finding an exit, so I can determine my location and the time of day, and more importantly, why the hell I am here. I stayed in that stiff bed, and tried to think, but couldn’t. My eyes darted like lizards. I needed a way out.
On the east side of the room I noticed there was an opening in the cinderblock wall. From the bed I stared intensely. I was about to get up when I realized I was nude except for the hospital bracelet. Interesting, I pondered. I finally got out of the bed and immediately fell to the ground. My leg felt as if it were broken. I inspected it as my naked body lay on the cold cement floor. My ankle was swollen like a balloon. There were strips of red that surrounded the inflammation. Damn, it must be sprained. Well. At least it isn't broken.
I looked toward the opening. I would have to limp my way to freedom. God I wish I had some clothes. If anyone were to see me, they would fear insanity. I finally pushed myself up and stood with most of my weight on my right leg, the good one. I looked ahead and limped slowly out of this makeshift prison.
Before I left, I looked at the clock on the wall again. It still said 6:30. It must be broken. Still I could not distinguish day or night. I needed to keep going forward.
I crept through the opening silently, using my arms to keep the weight off my useless foot. I followed a dark corridor down a bit and noticed a legitimate door at the end. I made my way to it and tried the handle. Locked. Perfect. I jangled the door several times to no avail. There was no window on the door, nor was there light coming through the bottom crack. Famished and annoyed I limped back to the bed and collapsed.
I stared at the light in the ceiling and thought about my life. What was my life like? I couldn't remember any details. I wonder where those memories went? I turned to my side and wrapped my cold naked body in the white sheet on the bed and dozed off.
I came to, naked, confused, and scared. I sat up and looked around. Same room, same lousy light. My eyes gazed back at the clock. 8:30 it said. How can that be? I thought it was broken. What's it matter anyways? I still couldn't figure out if it were night or day. I inspected my wristband further. All that it said was "Patient 86", and beside it was a smattering of blood. My own blood, I assumed. I decided to get up once more and check that strange door. I pushed off of the bed and limped forward like before. I rounded the corner skillfully and made it to the door once more. I noticed a thin beam of light shooting under the crack of the door. I gasped at the sight. I hit the deck and tried to look under the door. The crack was too small to distinguish anything. I was not even sure if it was sunlight or artificial light. Still no answer to my burning question. Blinded by the excitement of the light I almost forgot to check the lock. I got up, sweating, and tried the handle. Still locked, and it would not budge. I exhaled with frustration, and limped back to the main room. I sat down at the edge of the bed, noticing again that the clock seemed to be stuck. This time it was affixed to 8:30. How strange. I got up and hobbled to the clock on the wall. I picked at it, but it was securely fastened. My head was beginning to throb and pound. Which is strange because I never got headaches, or did I? I couldn’t remember. I went back into the bed and once more fell asleep.
I can recall this strange dream I had. I was sitting under a tree in the yard when it began to lightly rain. I stayed under that tree for a long time. Soon it started pouring and I walked toward my house. The door was opened and my mother was yelling for me to come in. “Stephen, Stephen come in you’ll catch cold! “ Then she started yelling “ Oh Thomas, Thomas it;s freezing out come inside now!” I just stared at her, in the cold rain. I did not advance any closer. I sat down, on the drenched grass, and just stared at her. Then the dream ended, and I awoke all sweaty and sad. What a bad dream. I was now sure of one thing. My name was either Stephen or Thomas. Maybe. Or maybe it was something totally different. Dreams have a strange way of screwing with your mind.
I was back in this weird place, back to reality. A reality that seemed all too real or fake. I decided to check the door again, though I seriously doubted it would be open. I looked toward the wall with the clock but couldn’t make out what it said. It was very blurry. My eyesight had deteriorated quite heavily during that last sleep. How perplexing. Now more than ever I was yearning for some answers. I got up, the same way I had before, and limped forward. This time I walked to the wall where the clock was. It slowly came into focus, as I was about 2 feet away from it. The clock read 7:30. Nothing new, still confused, I made my way down the hall once more, this time quite disillusioned. I came upon the door and checked for the light. It was gone. I tried the handle. Locked, as usual. I sat down and began to tear up. What was going on in this world?
Suddenly the door burst open. I gasped and looked up. All I saw was this blurry man in what appeared to be a white lab coat. He stood tall and powerful. He approached me and then he spoke. “Ah patient 86 is awake”. He scribbled down something in his clipboard.
“Who… are you? Who am I? What’s going on!
That was all I could muster up. The tall blurry man just chuckled.
“You are patient 86 my friend, now lets get you back to your bed.” He bent down and picked me up and guided me back to the room.
“Wh.. Wh.. what’s going on?” I was sobbing, but still I walked. I had no energy to resist. We were back in the room and he made sure I lay back down in the bed.
“Now you sleep tight, patient 86.”
Right before he left he injected my arm with a needle. I tried to scream but no noise came out. I was immediately out cold.
When I finally awoke I was completely blind. I could see nothing. It was a horrifying feeling. At first in my delirious state I thought that my eyes were closed, or that the sheet was over my head. It wasn’t. I slowly came to realize that this horrible nightmare was getting worse. I cried for a spell, before slamming my head on the bed several times. Then I just laid with impunity for what seemed like a decade. I tried to fall back asleep but couldn’t. I shuffled around the bed with anxiety before jumping up off the bed. As I hit the ground my ankle cracked and I went down. Shit, forgot that it was sprained. I yelled in anger for about 3 minutes.
After my yelling episode I just sat on the cold floor. Suddenly a voice sounded.” It is now 9:30.” It was a soft woman’s voice coming from the ceiling. This infuriated me further. Was it 9:30 AM or PM? I punched the bed with futility. I finally collected myself and stood up, and felt around the walls. I would try this damn door one last time. With my hands I guided my way to the opening. As I turned the corner, my eyes showed signs of life. I saw a strip of light coming from where the bottom of the door was. Maybe I wasn’t blind after all. The light must have just gone out. How strange. It must have been absolute darkness in that other room, I could not even see my hands below me. With a hint of excitement I crept closer and closer to the door. I was right before it. I held my breath for a while, and reached for the knob. Click. It opened. I slid the door open very slowly and light poured all around me. My eyes took awhile to adjust to the light, but at last I could see. The door lead outside. Right in front of me was grass. Beautiful green grass. I looked further and could see trees rustling in the wind. Most importantly I could see the sun. It was daytime.