I realised I was no pigeon when I jumped from the balcony. I realised I had no time to think when I crashed onto the concrete floor. I realised that my hair is pretty when it’s dyed(died) red. I realised that nobody cared to lift up the man in the black coat. I realised that my legs can shatter into a million pieces. I realised that the world still went on, cars passed, people rushed to their work, babies still cried. Everything was always in tune, always. As I struggled to stand up, I saw the sewer water in the drain. I saw my reflection in there, my face was intact but my lower lip was broken.My legs were pipes joined at awkward angles, my lungs worse. As blood rushed through my mouth, I regretted eating the cheese sandwich. I stood up and put on my coat.
A summer evening stood naked before me. Birds chirping, boys playing, men stealing kisses in the alleys. I ambled into a cafe, the blood trail on the floor gave my secrecy away. As I tried to put an ice on my broken lips, my legs shut down and I fell onto the ground. Again. A man with grey hair and stubble, stumbled on my leg and dropped his coffee on my head. He apologised and begged for me to forgive. I was enjoying the taste of free coffee, over my blood. I said it’s okay, but he wouldn’t leave. He took a towel and wiped away all the coffee and blood and guilt and dirt from my body. He said goodbye and he left. I was still on sitting on the floor. The cleaning lady came from the corner and started wiping the floor. She told me to lift my legs so that she could wash the floor, the now red floor. I said I couldn’t. She washed my legs and my torso and left me alone. All alone there. The floor became red again.
When I jumped from the balcony, when I landed ‘thud’ on the concrete floor, I never knew she wouldn’t pick up the call, that the cat wouldn’t drink the milk, that the baby wouldn’t cry.
I crawled out from the cafe to the bustling city again. People, people, people. Nothing suffocated me as people did. I die each time when I meet someone. This huge awareness of yourself as an existential being talking to another overcrowded my senses.
I wanted to be something else than what I was told to be. I wanted to be flight. I wanted to be something that lingered in the air just for a while so that you can see from somewhere and take a photograph. Because when I jumped from the balcony, my hands felt free and mind empty.
The street. I crawl to the center of the road and I lie down. I look at the sky and the sky looks at me. I take my cigarette out and light it. I send more clouds to the sky. My cigarette burns up what is left of my lungs and my right side of the body goes numb. Even my right ball. I look at the world and its the still same. I lift my left arm and wave at the people and they wave back laughing, lovingly. The world is not that bad.I breathe of what is left to breathe.My head is exploding and I can’t move. I take the last puff of the cigarette and I become a cloud.
Photo by Kay Jan