When a drunkard sees her shadow in the daylight, it’s a reminder of the future to come. When a drunkard sees her shadow in the nightlight, sitting at the desk, contemplating the wonders of the world, contemplating the obscurity of the church, the vanity of the preacher, contemplating the coordinates of a former lover’s location, then she jumps out of her chair as if her ass is on fire. She wilts when she stands, and she stifles when she beholds that the dollar bills in her back pocket have expired. And that is what decades of living do to human neurons.
At the beginning of April, there’s a lightbulb flickering on and off again. It reflects its light on the Black Sea like a lighthouse on the coast of Laguna.
There I was just sitting at the table, finishing the last of the Montauk. The vines outgrowing the flower pot. The vines hanging off the window seal. The vines enveloping the solid edges of the window pane. The treachery is inherited. The mass conflict catapulted through the air in silence.
I couldn’t bring myself to understand the how or the why of the situation. And the only thing that could put me at ease is the pour of a liquor or a beer.
Beer as a sedative is a joke. Five beers in the stomach and no food. Every drunk knows the feeling. The highs and the lows hit, emulating the effects of opium. Drug addicts and alcoholics aren’t that different. Their similarities collide like sugar and water. And if judgement day should dawn on them, then it should dawn again on the imbecile, the convict, the innocent, the feeble, the meek, the hegemonic cunts, sleeping with their heads erect.
Suppose the fire in your eyes can’t be extinguished and you’re left to see the world in such fury. Assume we might all go on like this, scratching at the scalp, scratching at bare skin, itching that scratch until the flesh is visible. And then when the pain is evanescent, we finally force ourselves into remission. Hello, we are heeling the wounds now. Hello, we are stitching the remnants of our bodies. The eyes and the ears that’ve departed the soul now lay in a reservoir, waiting for the dam to cut off further obstruction.
When you take another drink of montauk, why do you act as if you’re damned and then new and then damned again and then angry and then sad and damned again? The alcohol taught society well. The drugs created the monster. The monsters created the drugs and vice versa and the drugs evolved and the humans, too, and then society. The sad boys and girls. They can’t even bring themselves to drink lemonade anymore. They’ve lost the craving of partial zest. Instead, they crave straight lime, straight from the lime.
Last night I counted six apples at the kitchen table, and now it’s morning, and now there are eight. But everything begins to make the utmost sense after you drink more of this beer. You drink it to deplete an old reservoir filled with regret. You drink the beer to deplete the regret, and then you mask it with a shot of Bourbon or Jameson or something. And then you’re more fucked than you were before you took the shot. The senses have evolved and the brain cells are surprisingly more fresh and intact. Everything bites harder now.
Slap yourself in the face, and do it repetitively, until it appears like you might be sunburned. But the itch is still there. Unfathomably painful. And it’s almost as if the fear evades at dawn, except then you replace it with paranoia. The paranoia begets more anguish than the fear.
People don’t tell you such is possible, and it’s puzzling to live life that way.
Aylin Sozen 2018 ©