Battery Powered

While filling the fuel tank, I kept an eye on the rear window, watching R. as he finished his inspection of the straight razor; putting it down in favour of squinting through the gloomy interior at his book. Dusk’s web of darkness had been spun to completion, catching the first of its stars and drawing my eyes upward, to the blood red glimmer of Antares: the heart of the scorpion, and for a moment I contemplated the insignificance of life, before lowering my line of sight to the biting yellow glare of light standards standing sentinel on the gravelled edge of the parking lot, and to the unblinking security cameras perched beneath their high pressure sodium bulbs, gathering imagery for the prosecuting attorney of posterity.

With my face angled away from the surveillant gaze of the petroleum industry, I walked toward the kiosk, and its wage slave attendant, slouched over a magazine, boredom visible in the slackness of his jaw, the heavy lids of his eyes, and the half-read glossy pages half-heartedly turned. He glanced up at me as I entered, but didn’t say anything so I nodded and looked away in search of windshield wipers, of which there were a few glorious pairs, lifting my spirits in concert with the morphine now entering my veins, flushing the skin of my cheeks, relaxing the fibre of my muscles, bracing the marrow of my bones with the chemical equivalent of all that flows from the sea of rapture, and I smiled an imperturbable smile in the midst of the junk food section, before setting the fruits of my impulse down on the counter in front of the attendant, while noting the array of cigarettes behind him, and more importantly, the display of battery powered reading lights—those little ones that clip to the heft of the book.

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4 thoughts on “Battery Powered

  1. Another piece of yours that feels like it should be set to music. Odd because it’s a couple of long sentences but “biting yellow glare of their bulbs” “flushing the skin of my cheeks” – those are verses and I hear Velvet Underground.

    Liked by 1 person

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