My hands shake violently, from the cocaine or the cold, I can’t tell. I fumble with my camera, trying to figure the flash but fail with flailing fingers. "I like coke," I lie, grit my teeth and grind them down to thin, enamel-less nubs. For the first time in awhile, I feel nothing. Only the feeling in my lungs of a slow chemical drip trailing down my viscous esophagus. We sit at the water tower for another minute or hour. I count the streetlights, notice how they line the city that isn’t mine anymore. Orange hues and white lights laterally cover identical housing tracts, strip malls, corporations and fast-food joints. Inside beige houses, with fancy courtyards and double staircases, houses with clones of families I’ve known over and over. In strip malls, the counters barricade shifty-eyed clerks smacking gum and smoking cigarettes in the back office, one after another I’ve found myself glared at by every adult around me. I remind myself I am one, I’m not fifteen anymore. But I look in the mirror and see dark circles under red rims, a clenched jaw and a soul-less burn behind my eyes that could make my mother cry. Suddenly I don’t know who I am anymore, and I wonder if I ever did. Or if I’ve adapted each facade and mask from every place I’ve been, every school I’ve been forced to attend; trying to uphold a life of acceptance and “fitting in.” For what? For what! I know where I belong. I know I belong breathing the cleanest air in the damn country, climbing aspen plenty mountainsides in the winters, springs, summers, falls. I know I fit into the corners of my bed, curled up against the blankets, surrounded by my roomsoulmates— the only people who understand me, the only people who care to understand me. Riverside isn’t my home anymore, no matter how small and suburban I feel. I make a mental note that I’m an anachronism and accept it. My legs shake violently, because I can’t seem to catch a still moment in bed. The hours pass from two to three to four to five to six to the sunrise pulling me from my last thirty minute interval. A night of disappointment, or a night of realization, I can’t tell. #creativenonfiction #cnf #classassignment #writing #place #watertower

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One thought on “Anachronism

  1. This detail is awesome, the sensory words like drip, grit, shake, etc…I feel like I’m really getting a lot here. The picture makes me feel what you’re writing. I love the fact that we’re getting a story from this. It’s like a snapshot of the narrator’s life.

    Liked by 1 person

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