In Between Lives: Prologue

5th August, 1987.


I wonder if I can fly

I can feel the spray of the river water even from all the way up here. Even though it’s raining too heavily and the waves are too tremendous to see my reflection in it below.

I wonder if I can fly

The thought won’t leave my mind. It’s stuck in my head, repeating itself over and over like a faulty record player. Like a hymn or a chant.

Maybe I can fly. If I cannot, I will fall.

The thought of falling into the stormy blue abyss before me doesn’t scare me. It gives me peace.

Release, I think, as I stand between life and death.

I’ve always been in between things. In between places, choices, dreams.  Middle weight, middle height, middle IQ. Inhabiting the gray area between black and white since I can remember. I didn’t do it intentionally. I just couldn’t decide which side to lean toward. I could never decide anything without looking back.

And before I go on, let me warn you in advance that there is no intended moral to this story. But if you can still find one then I’m most glad for you, for I too, after reading a story, require closure through the idea that I learned something useful from it, “Yes, that’s all very well, but what does it mean?” That’s me after reading books like A Farewell to Arms or Wuthering Heights—both of which I adore despite their lack of a clear and sound message. And like these novels, I cannot provide you with a moral, simply because I don’t know what it is. So just treat this as something you may be able to relate to and if not, pique your interest and thought, in the least.

All of this leads back to the beginning of summer, when I decided to go live with my Aunt Marjorie in an obscure town in Texas. Nearly eighteen, on the verge of becoming a celibate (and of unpleasant disposition), living inside my head—hilariously lonely, albeit, comfortable.


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