Last? Next?

I watched her labored breathing, the skin yellow not pink.

She’d never been yellow, never been yellow a single day

till then. I knew that she had frequently closed her eyes so many

times before. Refusal with a punctuation mark. Denial

with a shake of the head and gritted teeth. These closed eyes of hers

were tired, not like the others. This time the mouth stayed open

without a fight.

This time her voice did not crack or strain, its volume did not increase

because words were lost to the submersion of the psyche, an afterthought

no more important than a vapor trail across a midday sky. Lucid only

when a cherished voice wiggled its way past the drum of her ear. Not mine –

not my voice – although I’d been talking for days. She didn’t couldn’t wouldn’t

hear me, except for when I prayed.

I knew, you see, that she was waiting.

Waiting for that girl in the starch white razor cleated dress and black –

black like the most starless sky – patent leather shoes. When the hands are pressed

together, palms merged into one, these humanoid hands form a skinny steeple. It was

what she was waiting for. The light turned on, the words were whispered

and when I faltered she exited the stage. Goddamn, that girl is a heathen, up until

my very last day! Sorry for the piss-poor send off. She should have known.

But I don’t know, how could I when she won’t haunt me? Mother, tell me,

was that the hopping off point, the midway station, or was it the ending of the tale?

© Tina Zabielski 2011-2019

About theminstrelscitadel

In search of courageous souls who aren't afraid to dig a little deeper and have a conversation about all manner of things. Rant, rave, debate, discuss... let's do it!
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11 Responses to Last? Next?

  1. toritto says:

    It wasn’t a piss poor sendoff = you were there. Regards

  2. Philip Shiell says:

    I know this… the first few lines hit like an invisible hammer reminding me of what transpired a few months ago. You know something has changed and you can’t do a damn thing about it.
    It’s out of your hands.

    I remember someone telling us that if we kept by their side, they still had something to hang onto: they were still aware of everything around them.
    Then came the day we left them alone.
    This was the day they exited the stage.

    This is a moving piece.


  3. Philip Shiell says:

    Perhaps this sums up everything at the moment:

    Close your eyes and let it flow…

    • Wow, beautiful lyrics, powerful song. Never heard of these guys, so I’m glad you posted that up there. Interesting: the name of the band compared to the high vibe lyrics of the song. I like the juxtapostion. 🙂 Thank you, my friend across the pond.

      • Philip Shiell says:

        I’m going to order the album.
        The songs are very powerful, melodic and melancholic.
        The videos are great too.
        Check out the original:

        I’ve only just discovered them… sheer chance.

        Yes, you’re right with the name and the title.
        I think their lyrics deal with a lot of pain and loss.
        They started life as a death metal band; thankfully they evolved to this!
        Not that I want to criticise what they once did, some of it was quite melodic.

        How is life across the pond?
        I’ve been focussing on getting new companies into our language school… loads of translation work too.
        It never stops.
        Music and writing is a release.
        Must read your latest work.

  4. You’ll have to tell me more about your language school. An old friend of mine, Andrew, lives in Berlin and has worked as an Interpreter in the past. I’m not exactly sure what he’s doing these days… Will you be playing Berlin anytime soon? I will try to get him to one of your shows and perhaps you can chat?

  5. I LOVE that video!!!! Thanks!! 🙂

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