May 28, 2024

Talent by Gabriele Zuokaite


You wake up late, when all those awoken by the alarm have already made their coffee. You are lying down and staring at the ceiling, drawing an imaginative trajectory of the fly’s flight pattern. You feel like a Gulliver, tied down with dozens of tiny sturdy ropes. It seems that your bed became the center of the Earth’s gravity, and you can’t pull yourself out of it. “Will you stay in your bed forever?” You ask yourself, because you can’t stand melancholy. You sometimes enjoy torturing yourself with stinging sorrow. When you don’t need to go to work, you concentrate on yourself; you feel as if you just returned from funeral. I wonder whose? Having peeled your body off those fluffy down pillows you sit for a while and look around. Your blue pajamas with yellowish teddy bears brighten up the pastels of the loony bin. You stand up, not realizing how week you are. Mechanically moving legs carry you to the restroom, where you see a white face in the mirror; it looks like it was powdered with the whitest compact powder. You turn around and slam the door shut. You sit down on the windowpane and look at the scurrying women and running children from your apartment number thirteen window, which is on the fifth floor. It is very cold behind the glass, and it is very hot in the apartment, so you draw circles with your thin, rough skinned finger on the frosted window. Then you touch the glass with your hand, let it rest for a while and then suddenly brush it down, the way you saw them do it so many times in horror movies. Freaked out by the gust of wind and blood running from your nose, you fall down. Your body is cut by thousand little blades, but you don’t feel any pain. You lie down for a while, and speculate what God is busy with this moment.  Finally you stand up. The world blacks out, but you hang in. You get to the CD player and feel around the right buttons with the callused fingertips, slump on the worn off stool, and listen to a song, that drags you deeper into melancholy. You close your eyes. It seems that the sounds disperse, they jump around, approach and fade off, and sometimes they freeze.

He was talented. He arranged pictures like mosaic from the air bubbles.  Pictures hanging on the walls fell down, and he still sat there, focused on the meaning of the words. He might have been happy. He loved to torture himself. Then he woke up from the dream.

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