Poetry, Prose, Prosetry, Uncategorized

Things That Are Grey – Ally Ameel

I’m not sure if it’s grey or gray, but in the end it doesn’t really matter

 

everything is blurry

 

it’s like my ears stopped working

and I can’t see very well

like I’m looking through water

and everyone is swimming

 

which I guess I am

 

I don’t know where the crying began

and when I stopped

 

but now i found myself sitting

in silence

 

I could smell cleaning products

and the walls were so white

it was almost blinding

but the light bulbs

washed everything away

 

I stared at the wall

and sometimes

people passed

in blurs of white

blending with the walls

and occasionally blue

 

I must have sat for hours

without thinking at all

 

mom came later

and did her mom thing

with the hugging and the worrying

and trying to figure out

just what I’m feeling

dad just sort of stood there

with his hands in his pockets

saying I’m sorry a lot

he doesn’t deal with sadness

too well

 

they waited

but then we had to go

and I had to say goodbye

 

I’m used to goodbyes

but they never get easier

no matter how many times

 

I stood up

and walked to the window

next to the door

the blinds cut my vision

into thin strips

but my brain put the image together

like a puzzle

and I saw her lying there

with her chest moving

up and down

I breathed with her for a while

 

I walked inside

and stood near the window

to the outside

 

I remember when

she taught me to play chess

even though I already knew how

and she broke all the rules

and wouldn’t let me take any of her pieces

not even the little pawns

 

she had cats too

but only two

so not quite crazy

like I said before

she snuck them pieces of her dinner

while we sat around the table

playing cards

when she got sick of chess

she cheated at that too

 

and she even made me watch

black and white romance films

while I sat on the green couch

with cracks in the leather

and she sobbed

into a box of tissues

 

she believed in

true love

and all that stuff

 

I looked outside

the sky was grey

it seemed to know

that something sad was happening

i was still crying

 

she finally spoke

her voice crackling

like a radio stuck between stations

 

“henry stop crying”

 

I turned around

and there she was

mrs laverne

she still wore

those silly green glasses

her skin was worn

and she looked tired

 

“henry get over here. I’m dying, didn’t you hear?”

 

I stumbled over, awkwardly

 

“hi” I muttered

 

“wow your social skills have really improved”

 

I didn’t laugh

 

“you know henry, you’re a good guy.”

 

“oh thanks.”

 

“and life sucks, but it will get better”

 

I thought

about when mrs laverne

bailed me out of jail

 

she asked me what I knew

about love

 

I always thought love was stupid

and cheesy

I thought

it was supposed to make you happy

but all I felt was grey

like the sky

 

but then I thought about

when mrs laverne

made me chicken noodle soup

when I got pneumonia

for two weeks

 

and when she fixed my car

after I drove into a tree

and she didn’t even tell my parents

 

I thought

about how she dazed off

and stared

at the photograph

of her son and husband

siting on the mahogany table

in her living room

 

and I sort of knew why now

 

“thanks” I finally said

 

she reached her hand out to mine

her nails were still painted red

I almost smiled

 

“I’ll miss you henry”

 

“do you really believe in love?”

 

“doesn’t everybody? it’s the only reason I’m still alive”

 

she closed her eyes

and smiled back at me

 

“goodbye”

 

“I’ll miss you too mrs laverne. you weren’t so bad”

 

I walked away

without turning back

in the back of my mind

I wanted to say

see you tomorrow

but I knew it wasn’t coming

   

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One thought on “Things That Are Grey – Ally Ameel

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