- I opened my eyes restful and blank looking up at a ceiling that I didn’t recognize. I woke up in a stainless, clean, and pristine room with all walls lit and dimly shining its empty light into the vacancy filled with only me and myself. Looking right I saw myself, a body that is large and hovering that merely looked like me, sleeping, nude. And in that room that I woke up today would I come to know myself. Breathing I sat up and entertained my dream bubble, seeing this and that and doing that and more. There was nothing in that sterile room that only contained myself and I, no things to do and nothing to see. I stood up naked and walked towards myself and nudged the sleeping beauty.
- I woke up in that stainless, clean, and isolated room again today, and so panicked I was that I fainted against the warm body that didn’t try to hold me, merely acting as a living, breathing, furniture so I didn’t hit my head, although that was unintentional. I was cared for by myself but I did not care for it in this sterile dream turning sour quickly. Pressure built and panic set in again. My head hurts and I don’t feel so good.
- And so I woke up laying against the breast of myself, panting in terror of my condition, I tried to wake up from my dream biting my tongue but it tied me down further, wrapping my head in cotton and perfume, muting my thoughts and senses. I wandered blindly in that room, trying to feel for a way out, but that room had no doors, no windows, and no way to breathe without drowning. I woke up in a stone room with linen walls and static that wormed into my ear. I flung myself at the walls and floor trying to get up and sober myself from the intoxicated cotton induced vertigo, to no effort paid for. The walls didn’t respond to my wails, cries, and hits, but my body did. I was exhausted and dehydrated from the effort it took to try to get out of this suffocating psyche.
- Sometimes I wake up fine, just fine, without a care for my condition or care for my naked self who’s been bound with neurosis, sometimes tapping and twitching with invisible hallucinations that I can’t perceive. I just laid and looked up or turned and stared at myself sleeping while in a hypnagogic state of restlessness. Inside that room there was nothing, but I was alright; I didn’t thirst or was hungry, just bored with my new thought chasted mind. With nothing to do but stare at myself and stare at the walls I watched the popcorn ceiling move subtly, making shapes out of the after images that lay in the dotted filler and blocking out the illuminating light that didn’t exist throughout the room, although the room was lit and had no lights. My boredom and complacency in my condition built up angst, and angst I bottled up and shut down, as what else could I do? My attitude towards my stone wardens grew in each moment awake here and not awake in reality. No matter how many times I flung myself or beat the walls into my own submission they stared back blankly. The walls can’t be changed, the walls can't be moved, the walls won’t let me out. They are unfeeling and don’t care that they hold me in, horrible bastard walls. Unfeeling and abusive walls that contain me and myself. Like others, I can only hold things in for so long until they irk me and become outside expressions. I’ve become irritable and slowly immune to self narcosis that’d kept me grounded for so long as I wake up each morning in the room. Time came and emotions boiled until I burnt myself and lashed at my surroundings. I woke up hitting my sleeping self trying to wake up. Was this me? I’m still convinced this is an infinite dream in a drug induced coma that I’ve put myself in without using any, so how could it be me? I laid there on the uncomfortable ground beneath myself, giving a brief shadow to the lights that never turn off and never flicker. I stared up at the soft skin of my back and caressed the line that my spine writes on my supple flesh. And in that staring and staring at my back, I tried to recall what I was before I woke up in the room this morning. I vaguely remember waking up ill and going to the store with my partner to go grab some groceries with our limited and impoverished budget. We were at a run down market that hadn’t been repainted in decades older than us, lined with off brand and nearly expired rotting fruits and vegetables. In that decrepit store we bought the rot and comfort. To be slightly sick is better than to starve is what I told myself to avoid responsibility to better ourselves. Once we bought our half-fill we walked back to our molding house whose rent was too expensive and condition too poor to fix, whose windows I boarded up to avoid the shame of those looking in. I coughed and tried to make light of our situation while cooking for the both of us. We humans are strong beings physically and can front many illnesses and pain before we collapse.I’d like to think that we did use that fact well. We accepted our constant stagnation in our decaying house surrounded by empty homes that house only the wind and rodents. At least our mice neighbours didn’t complain about noise.
- I tried to recall my prayers while laying and staring at the flaking popcorn ceilings lined with mold but I can only recall the first line of our father. Mother and God would be disappointed with my religious negligence and poor decisions that led us to live in a step above squalor. We didn’t own anything that didn’t fit inside of a bag and a half and our last pet was stolen by something bigger than us. I’d like to think that my partner was beautiful but I’m sure she wasn’t real, I’ve been in this room for so long that I’ve forgotten her features. At what point will I forget our trip to the store to buy rot and alcohol too? I don’t look forward to the eventual erasure of her existence but I have no way of recording it as my memory hazes and is instead filled with my own irrelevant buzzing in an empty room. There is no song to play in my head, only static. I need the static to block out my own thoughts that remind me of my forgetting and of my featureless room.
- I woke up in my own room still still with only its four illuminated walls and my autistic roommate that takes up half the space in this boxed room with no mirrors. I’m unsure of my own features at this point. I’m not sure what I look like. An external version of myself reminds me of what may I look like but I'm not sure if I aged since I woke up this morning in this room and she didn’t. Morning being whenever I wake up since I can’t see the sun which is no different than my hazy recollection of superimposed memories that may only be an empty warming thought instead. I'm on my back lying next to my partner staring at the popcorn ceilings with her arm around the back of my neck and mine over her chest, perfectly still to not wake us both us from this waking motionless sleep. Mold has taken over more and more of the ceiling since we first moved in and among them the walls brother has been dusting us with their tiny toxic children, but we can’t have any of our own, especially when I live alone with myself in a room with four walls and an empty ceiling that I stare at and make move when I am bored.
- Nothing has changed since I woke up this morning and nothing will change when I wake up again. Sleeping is my new pastime but it births no dreams and no recollection of fond memories, only a blank blackness that I wake up in a blink of an eye waking. I don't realize when I am asleep and I don’t know if I slept for 12 hours or only blinked to give my eyes something to do. I never did go outside prior other than to eat and work and work I did most of my days in one year and none in the next. You don’t need much to live you know. Neither did we. Contempt in our small home with our small belongings and small savings we lived. We pretended it was nice and played dress up as a normal couple doing normal things like normal people do. I don’t know what we did but we did it though. Can’t do it now because she doesn’t exist and I am stuck in a room that is forever quiet and forever empty that's only populated with the sound of my breathing and the crushing weight of my head. Bored, I poke the body of my sleeping self and she doesn’t react. Only when I nudge the face of myself to her do I get a response. It’s not conscious, it’s something natural and only a response to stimuli, but why did I react at all? I wasn’t sure if I was dead or sleeping or in a dream or in a room with four illuminated walls that don’t breathe and a ceiling that moves if I blur my vision and let myself take in the way that it almost washes over itself in its vermiculite waves. Inside my room I woke up this morning remembering that I didn’t read much when I was awake and not in the room. I enjoyed the idea of reading but when application come I fell asleep fast even when I adored the content of the book I was reading. I was certain I was cursed with literacy born narcolepsy. I woke up this morning laying against the soft stomach of my naked self, starving and thirsty. Looking forward I see there lay a knife and a cup of water on the far side of the tiny room a mile away. I rolled towards the water on the carpeted floor that bit me when I stepped or laid on it. I was so tired of this uncomfortable biting carpet, I wanted to wake up again in my own ground in my own sleeping bag that I lay in at my true home but this was no home and there was no comforting sense of solitude in me and my companion that was not myself, just static and increasing amount of cotton bandages being placed over my senses and thoughts a little more each day. So I rolled towards the cup and drank the water, unfulfilling, only reminding me of my constant thirst that I’ve been ignoring and telling myself didn’t exist because this is all fake and every morning that I’ve woken up is just as made up as my own ignorance towards my entropic condition. The unsubstantial water reminded me of my own existence, a helpless child yet to even be able to move its own limbs, splayed open and weeping stole what little groundedness I still held onto. I skewed my body over the floor and contorted it in aching ways to vent my own frustration, screaming. In knots and ache I turned to myself and the knife that appeared before me with no note to say who it was from. It must have always been there I just had my eyes closed. Exhausted and panting I grabbed the knife and pressed it against my knuckle trying to wake myself up from this ever so permanent lucid dream. I sweat and drool as I push it further into my skin. My skin breaks pulling out the fluids from inside.
- A dark red path flows from the meat that I’ve cut flowing nowhere. My hand is bleeding but I feel nothing. Only anxiety from the cut and unknowing shock that's about to cut loose. I scream out in pain as parts of my cotton bandages are taken off from my head. Contorting my body and squeezing the honey-like ichor out of my body does nothing to alleviate the intense stinging that gnaws at my hand up to my splitting head. I can only writhe and writhe in a futile attempt to ignore and cover the unending flow of life that flows from the open wound. Taking the meat I've cut off and hopelessly trying to put it back makes me bawl into a pit and my heart drops. I am in my own hell and there is no water here. I am stuck in a permanent room that serves no purpose other than for the creator to laugh at me. I didn’t mean to forget my prayers and show my devout belief, I assumed that Jesus loved me and in that I could pretend to pray and pretend to be devout and I wouldn’t be damned to a soulless existence where I am stuck with myself bleeding and a lump of meat that is no longer me but a decaying part of what I am accompanied by the rapid degradation of what I can hold onto. Contorting myself like a retard child makes me forget where I am and myself. An act of expression is all I can do to vent any emotions that I’ve bottled up and let leak. Sprawled on the floor spitting up saliva and shouting obscenities until my throat burned is where I remember when she first yelled at me when she woke up and crawled out of the crawlspace we lived in. She realized her own destitute living and demanded that I care for it and take care of myself. I remember her without legs crawling out of the underbelly of the house we lived under and me trying to pull her back into my grasp so we could stare at the foundations where the floorboards lay together. I woke up with my eyes crusted over and my ears hearing the hum of my body pulsing. The walls remain illuminated and unchanging stare back at me. Unfazed and austere, I gaze at myself laying floating and see that her finger is missing too.
- I woke up this morning to finger nubbed and a cut finger missing. In the corner behind myself there is a stack of paper, charcoal, piles of crackers, and tins of water loaded to the now higher ceiling. I couldn’t look for long at the mound of relief that presented itself to me and I feverishly stuffed myself. My body is sore and my self looks bruised and discontent from the deserved tantrum.
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