Image for short story

Hell and well below the dustless calm
René Adams
660 words

And you get yourself in. Even though you’re not meant to be there, then a waterfall many days fall by and you find yourself punching it down in a different way.

Jacques woke up and it was July.
The great Julys of Britain where the only words are F- you in the heart and F- me at work.

But then again, only the lowest classes have had to learn how to escape in the best ways. Perhaps that’s where the first escape artists learnt their arts. It wasn’t in dusty schools, fraternities of eternal hymns, and certainly nothing spoken between kings or queens. It was the sound of quiet desperation breaking wild. Naked soul in the soul.

Buried next to a market of light, and a sky of grey, the bus pulls itself apart as we pass by several grave yards. One to my left. Then one closer to town. And I can’t wait to live in my life after I finish my daily tasks. 8.12am is a dirty time. A howling hour. Where nothing dances. I breathe out like a horse and walk over to the photocopier.

“Heavy night last night Jacques?” I’m asked.
“Heavy in what way?” I reply.

Then the glass will roll down the opposite way outside, rain coming in through the window of the bus. But no matter. Jacques opened his pay packet as two drunks fought over who owed who back behind. God was happy that he’d given the drunks humour, the righteous boredom, the spiritual wafers, the skaters glide, the dreamers substance, the workers pay, the lovers slumberness, the whiskey glass turn, the artists moxie, the sun a closeness, the will its bloom, the poet a blood, the dog a howl, the knife a beating steel boot, horizons paying music back the week.

He heard them fighting in the seats behind, so many lives away, as he toasted the night himself, lips red leaking from a half finished bottle of red wine. A splash on his suit. Teeth painted with an easy swig. He placed the bottle of red between his legs and ripped open the payslip. To ask how much he was being taxed and eaten away with politeness. Not that the nuances of revolution will ever work until there is only one cockroach left dancing on a dog’s tongue.

Maybe in Quebec. It always sounds good there. From the lack of knowledge of a man glad that the week is over, and, there is only the thought of damaging the night with dance.

Inside the envelope Jacques found a photo of his love. He’d been working there two weeks, no one knew anything, and yet, here’s the joke.

No figures explaining how much cash or, with what ease it would be depleted.

Maybe it was the ride home.

Maybe it was the eighth day drunk at work, and the road and the wine had placed it there.

No. Sure as hell, instead of a normal payslip was a picture of a dark haired girl. She looked a lot like Esrel, the last lass that had put up with his poems and life, then not.

But the greatest thing about travelling, the greatest thing about travelling on a hulk with rolling sweating rain, sweating wine, and a damn sweating jaw made of headaches and humour, is that, you can either run down stairs and ask the driver to stop; piss fifty people off with your delusions, or, just roll honey on…

So now they’re paying us with photos of lost lovers yes aye, no way to escape from them. Jacques got off at his stop and knew that he was going crazy. Crazy enough to light a smoke under a lamp post. Just listening to the songs of July. Herds of pups, malamutes, scantly clad death, and wine pouring from the full moon like a Rancine play splashing in the streets puddles.

He looked up to the moon, and said, hey there.

Dancing his own song back.

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