Almost Nine

by Sai   May 22, 2018

This is what I remember.
My phone lights up.

Johnny is dead.

My sister didn't use the word "dead"
but I knew that's what she meant.
I delete the message as soon as I read it
as though that would make it not true.

Suddenly I'm angry. Suddenly I'm weeping.
Suddenly I couldn't stop and I don't remember
what else I did this morning. Suddenly
I don't want to go home. Suddenly I couldn't stay here.
Suddenly I wanted to take a shower again. Maybe
it'll wash off, whatever this is, and I'll watch it circle

down the drain, screaming at me to not let it drown.
Suddenly I'm listening to music and I don't know
who turned it on and somehow it's five hours later
and I can't move so I wiggle my toe because I read
that in a book once and I got it to move which
means I'm not paralysed, which means my soul
is just drunk and maybe I want to stay drunk like
this forever as the world goes on around me, and
death passes by, not once casting a glance in my direction
and suddenly I'm on the road. Suddenly I'm looking

down at a body that I only knew as warm and pulsing
and vibrant and it's none of those now, just a husk of sorts
and someone from a distance begins talking to me
softly as my eyes glaze over so I run back outside
because God forbid anyone sees me with my guard

down. Suddenly it's a month later. Suddenly I'm still not okay.
And somewhere far back in my mind, a thought
wanders - when exactly was the last time you were okay?
Suddenly my phone lights up. It's almost nine.


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Latest Comments

  • 4 months ago

    by nourayasmine

    Haunting, heartbreaking, personal and true. I relate to the flashbaks, to the disbelief and heartache.

  • 2 years ago

    by Mark

    Great win!

  • 2 years ago

    by - Mr. Darcy


  • 2 years ago

    by Mahal Ko Kuya Ko

    Wow! Suddenly I'm in love with this! The narration, the realizations are all amazing. I just love everything about this! Sure there's some hidden meaning to 'nine', is it something personal or there's just something about it, not sure. But I love how you just jump from one phase to another, from hearing the news to being out of yourself and the events that came after... I have to praise the repetition of 'suddenly', like it builds up the momentum of the flow of what's happening and then bam, it's almost nine! I just love that! I love the wording, it's natural and filled with emotions, not complex but with great depth! Haha. I am now rambling... I just love this, really! But I really want to know what's with 'nine'... Anyways, this is beautifully done! Added to favorites! Wanna nominate but POTP already did. Haha.

    -- MKKK

    • 2 years ago

      by Sai

      I received the message at around quarter to nine. When my phone lit up to notify me that a new message has come through, the first thing I noticed was the time and I remember thinking, it's almost nine. Weeks later, I received a message at around the same time and I got flashbacks from that day.

      Thanks so much for your kind words.

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