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村上幸雄

No.002 Slowdeath

 僕はSOHOネットワーク埼玉(SNS)という任意団体に参加しているのですが、昨年、SNSの月例会に、以前、SNS会員のお宅にホームステイをしていたRobert君が、高校卒業後の休みの期間を利用して、友達と来日し、参加してくれました。
 そして、驚いた事に皆、プレゼンしてくれました。その、プレゼン・スキルと度胸に感心してしまいました。

 Vincent君の朗読してくれた詩のタイトルは『Slowdeath』でして、プレゼンの五ヶ月前、というと、高校卒業間近ということですね。このちょっと気持ち的に揺れ動くときに書かれたようです。当然、アマチュアですので、文章的に整っていませんし、勢いで書いたという事で推敲も足りないと思います。また、スラングというか、米国文化(アニメ等)を知らないと分からない箇所もありますが、僕自身は、何か、自分の高校時代の不安定な時期を思い出し、楽しめました。まあ、それは、月例会の場だったからかもしれませんが。
 ちょっと、【I'M HERE.】のページ掲載には疑問もあるかもしれませんが、僕が楽しんだのでという事で、許してください。
 SNSの月例会の内容は議事録で確認できます。

Slow Death

Vincent Poturica

    We're driving and it's Looney Toons. I look over at Charles and he's Sylvester the Cat. I look over at Roger and he's Tweety Bird. He's chirping in my ear and I'm singing. Chavez is up in front and he's the Roadrunner. "Meep Meep" he says to me and I'm tripping. The car's moving fast, faster than anything I've been in before and I'm ready to go. We're turning and it's dark and I'm sort of scared, but I'm happy because I'm with my friends. I'm looking over at Charles again and he's laughing. We're going light speed, but I'm moving slow. I'm coming in and out of everything. I'm in one reality and I'm switching to the next and I start to understand those old legends. I feel like we're in some sort of meeting in the car, some sort of round table get together: a cartoon fairyland, a C.S. Lewis fantasy. I'm flying, but I'm okay. I feel safe. I feel warm. I don't know where we're going, but I don't care because I feel good and I feel free and I forget.

    My name's Sebastian and I'm trying to make sense out of things right now. I guess you might say reflecting, but I wouldn't call it that. You see I feel a lot. Maybe too much, but right now I know I've got to write. I've got to wipe my hands all over this paper and hope some of my feelings rub off on it because my feelings are all I know anymore. I know I've got to get everything out this time before I lose touch again or forget because I don't want to forget again. I figure by writing I can make something for myself to hold onto, fashion a device to keep me grounded because right now I'm floating and I wanna come down. So I'll just start from where I can remember.

    Anyways, I'm getting up and it's bright and I'm yawning and it feels pretty good. I've got plans today and it's always good when you know you've got something to do. Sometimes when I've got nothing to do I just sit alone for hours and just think and get sad and fall harder. I hate that. I did it for three months straight a while back and smoking wouldn't even fill me up anymore, so swallowed a bottle of pills because I was tired of waiting, but somehow I woke up and I was still living. You always hear about people who say they see a blinding white light or some shit when they're dying, but that's not right at all. I didn't feel anything. I was emptier than I'd ever been before and that's saying something. One second I was dreaming and the next I was gone. But I woke up and there was a tube down my throat and my parents were next to me crying saying it was all going to be okay and I was pissed. All I wanted was to be done with it, but somehow I was brought back. I hated my mom and dad so much right then. I sort of still do I guess. But I'm getting past my anger because I'm seeing a therapist and taking medication and I think I'm doing alright, or at least as well as someone like me can.

    Whatever. Anyways, I'm up and I'm naked and I'm feeling good. I look down and I see that I've got a big hard on and that's cool and right away I know today's gonna be fun. So I walk to the bathroom, take a piss, shower and look in the mirror. I smile at my reflection. I haven't shaved in weeks and my hair's long and knotted and ugly, but I like that because I feel pain and I understand and I'm crying now and I don't know why. But I remember the hospital and I don't wanna go back, so I stop and I think some more and get dressed and put on some jeans and a collared shirt because the place I'm going to is supposed to be sort of formal I guess.

    I put on my mask and walk downstairs and talk to my parents and perform the practiced smiles and laughs and they think everything's okay and that's good because I'm scared of going back. So I call up Anthony and wake him up and I say sorry and he says "no worries kid" and we're cool. Anthony tells me he's wearing a suit and I say "fuck" and he says "word" and I say "lates," and so does he. So I go upstairs and I pick out one of my dad's old coats. It's camel-colored and it reminds me of Turkish Golds. I find some slacks and a gray blue tie and I can dig it. So I put on my new clothes and I'm feeling real and my parents like it. I watch some T.V. and then Anthony comes and picks me up and my parents take a picture of us because they say "we're not going to see you much longer" and I can feel it. I understand my parents sometimes and I can realize the love and I hold it close.

    So I'm riding with Anthony and we're listening to some slow funk grooves and he's mellow and mad at the same time because he's got that slow rolling insanity that all the great musicians have. They build it all up inside then come down and crash and then start all over again. Anthony and I ride in the quiet and get to his girlfriend's house and I talk to her mom and I like her and she likes me. I think she sees some sort of energy in me that she remembers from when she was young. She takes some pictures of all of us and then we all swagger out to the car and ride. We go down the freeway and I turn on some jazz and we talk and we listen and I think we even hear and I'm feeling good because I'm going somewhere.

    Anthony turns us all on and we're at some swinging hotel and it's fancy and it's high society and I'm in awe and I'm digging the whole scene. A guy opens the door for me and I can't help but feel embarrassed. I see all the swanky folks in their fabulous dress, but I block it out and just roll with the scene. I follow Anthony and his girlfriend and I see kids from all over that I recognize vaguely. I see them register me slightly on their radars, but I'm still just a nobody ghost anyways, so we all walk past each other without saying anything.

    We sit down at a big round table and I feel awkward and I can feel the tension in the room. I look around and I see the place is huge and overdone. I'm in a hall of mirrors and I'm lost and I look at my reflection and I feel even uglier, but I'm rolling with it because I'm somewhere, so I just listen.

    Kids are talking about college again and it's weird because I almost forgot that I applied. Its feels like I've been living a dream lately. It's like I'm here, but that I'm detached and I can't get back inside myself. Maybe it's because I've been using a lot or maybe it's because of the meds or maybe it's because I can't seem to laugh like I used to anymore. I don't know and I don't really care, so I'm letting go and watching the presentation in front of me.

    It's a charity ball and girls are walking down a runway and fashioning nice clothes. It makes me think of glam rock and Ziggy Stardust and sparkles because all I see are flashes and feathers and all of the girls are beautiful and I can't help but get hard as I look at their tits and assess. I'm almost feeling relaxed but I'm not. There's a ceremony and they talk about each of the girls and everyone's looking emotional and I'm drinking lots of coffee because they wouldn't serve me drinks and I'm wired and grinning.

    I walk outside with another girl and we smoke cigarettes and talk with some kids I don't know. I'm not really listening, but the people seem all right and I'm feeling cool in my old school suit, smoking menthols and blowing smoke out of my nose.

    I go back inside and it's over and I talk to some people I haven't seen in awhile and I'm floating again. I'm chewing some pink bubble gum and I'm following Anthony and then Clark speaks and finally I'm listening because Clark is someone who hears. His AOL profile reads, "THE UNIVERSE IS ABSURD" and I can feel those words more than most blowjobs. Anthony waves goodbye and I follow Clark and he's talking and he's sophisticated and he's tall and he's handsome and he makes me want to be beautiful even though I know I'm disgusting.

    So he talks some more and we walk over to another reception across the street and I lay on the floor. My head's pounding and the room is crowded and loud and swaying and I remember when I used to lie on the hardwood floor of my room at twilight and shadows would crawl down from white walls and bite my neck with black teeth and I would try to scream but I couldn't because they would fill my mouth with dark. And I remember school some days when I would talk to myself and everyone would look at me and girls would laugh and I would run to the bathroom and cut my thighs with the safety pins that I wore in my ear. And I remember when my parents would fight and my dad would leave and my sister would cry and I would hold her until she stopped.

    I see a bar at the other side of the room and I walk over there and steal a bottle of red wine and I wanna forget.

    I'm drunk and I'm stupid and I leave with Clark and a bunch of girls that talk about nothing and we walk around and they shop and I drink some more. We walk and I get in a car with a girl and we drive and I look over at her and she's fidgeting and avoiding my eyes. And I try to talk to her but she stutters and I can see she's scared and I can't stop laughing until she drop's me off.

    I walk into Jason's house and I see Charles. He's lying on the floor, calm and cool like he always is, and he's playing some video game. He's long and lean and tough and he looks up and glares at me for a second, then smiles when he realizes who it is and says, "Finally" and I laugh and kick him in the head lightly. "So, let's smoke it," I say, and he nods and so do the rest of the guys there. Leo gets up and his long hair sways just like it does when he's skating and Roger puts on his shoes and he looks like a skeleton in the dim light and Chavez is mellow and brooding like he always is. And I notice Jason drawing on the ground and his eyes are steady and angry as he sketches a man gouging out his own eyes. I'm looking at Jason and I know he's mad and that's probably why I like him so much. And I look at his eyes again and I know he's breaking inside just like I am.

    We drive and Chavez clears the tobacco out of two Parliaments and we're listening to the Misfits. We get out and get burgers and I go to the bathroom and take out a dime bag and pack the cigarettes. It's supposed to be from India and I smell it and it's dank and I smile. I lick my fingers and the cigarettes and flush the toilet and leave. I walk back outside and everyone's eating and I can start to take off my skin.

    We get in the car and drive to a park and Charles and I each smoke one. And I'm looking at the sea and it looks empty.

    Chavez is driving so fast that I can see my skin drip and pull and stretch and I feel like I just ate some mushrooms. Charles is grinning at me and his teeth look like knives and I cover my face because I don't wanna get cut. Jason turns up the music and Modest Mouse makes me trip even harder.

    We're in a hookah bar and I think I'm in the Middle East and I look around and the music's pulling me out of my body and I see some girls at my table with Jason and Chavez and Charles. And I fall asleep in outer space.

    I wake up at Charles' apartment and we eat breakfast and talk about hardcore and Jason's there, but he doesn't say anything. Jason and I leave and we park at a hill and lie on the grass and smoke Camels and Jason starts to talk and I listen because he's someone I can hear. He tells me he's taking a girl out tonight and I recognize her name and I tell him she's hot and he agrees and he tells me he really likes her and I tell him that's really coo. l And he nods. We smoke four each and we're both mellow and staring at the clouds and trying to get warm without thinking. And I start to fall into my own daydream nation and I see Jason's night.

    He drops me off at home a little later and he picks the girl up from a park with a circle of trees and a bench covered with magic marker graffiti. He gets out and offers her a clove and he gives her his light and they talk in vanilla smoke. They drive to the mall in silence and she gazes out the window and studies the cracks in the sidewalks. They park and ride the escalator to the third floor and go to the ice cream parlor and get a banana split and share it. When Jason finishes, she licks the cream off his face and they kiss with their tongues.

    They leave and he buys two tickets for the midnight horror show and it starts late, but that doesn't matter.

    They sit down together and Jason puts his arm around her and she snuggles against him. And he smiles and so does she. The movie starts and he looks at her and she straddles him and unzips his pants and he pulls off hers and they go slow because they want to enjoy the closeness. The zombies moan and so does she and he can tell that she's getting close because her hands are tensing up on his back. She comes first and then he follows and then they're done and she rolls off him. She looks back at Jason and he holds her close and he sees her eyes are empty. And he can see that she understands distance. And Jason remembers that even when everyone's dancing and smiling, they're still crying. And he hides his face in her black black hair and cries too. And she eats salty popcorn and pretends not to notice the tears that are making her sweatshirt damp. And I ride my skateboard through green green trees that cover me up and swallow my screams.


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