Monday, September 20, 2010

The fan by KT McVeigh

I used to turn it on to drown out your snoring

Those random little screams and German exclamations you’d leak in your sleep

Urgent moans you’d emit every time I closed my eyes

I don’t think I got through one night without hearing you,

Before I got that fan

And then I couldn’t sleep without it

Even after you stopped talking to yourself

I convinced myself I needed it

And became accustomed to the sound of it

And turning it on meant it was finally time to pass through

To my beautiful second life

Where I was home and my mom was in the kitchen cooking something that wasn’t intended to feed 400 people and I would lie down in my room in complete darkness with the stars on my ceiling and consider that, cosmically, I may be completely worthless and that my life might begin and end without notice, but right where I was, I was happy.

Maybe this is all just a dream.

Do you ever think that what you think is happening isn’t even there?

What if the only things real are the things that you feel?

What if death is the end of the dream

And you wake up on the other side

Surprise! The state of your hair was a joke

And the clothes that you wore were a lie

Then something as simple as my mom downstairs

Is so wonderful it makes me want to cry.

And it was July

At my grandmother’s house

And my sister turned on the fan

And suddenly, unexplainably, there were tears in my eyes

And I was begging her to turn it off! Turn it off, please

Because I was in my old room with her

Eyes wide open in the dark

Trying to imagine myself away

Listening to its dull whir

And now, tonight

With so much left to do

It has only seemed fitting since I arrived to have the fan on

But the truth is, I am alone

And I reach up and flip the switch without a second thought

And it turns slowly and abruptly I am encompassed by this silence so loud

I feel like I’m swimming through jello

And since day one

The fan was white noise.

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