Concrete Bedding

Make the decision not to hang yourself in the closet. Put on the heavy black raincoat. Walk outside and watch the rain fall past the streetlights. Don’t take the path by the river, go onto the main road. Don’t let the darkness scare you. Watch for bums crouched in the bushes. Keep your distance from the road and avoid getting sprayed by passing cars sneezing puddle water. Finger the pen in your pocket. Imagine stabbing your attacker in the face. Carefully pull the hood over your head, accept the security risk. Keep a brisk pace, don’t make it look like you’re following the woman to her car. Watch her pick up the pace as she slides into the car and smile at the sound of the locks. Get off the sidewalk and take the crosswalk to the bridge. Do not wait for cars to stop. Imagine being struck by a car and dying. Walk along the bridge and study the cars passing beneath it. Stare at the headlights and don’t move. Wait for something to happen or someone to find you. Do not respond to the voices, wait for them to make physical contact. Pull the hood down and let the rain wet your hair. Embrace the urge to scream but do not allow yourself to do so. Uncap the pen in your pocket. Wait for the physical contact. Look in the direction of the voices. Wave at the smiling man with the umbrella. Do not smile back. Ignore his question. Stare back into the headlights. Continue ignoring his voice. Attempt to climb the protective railing on the bridge. Respond to the hand on your shoulder with a plunge of the pen into the smile of the man. Watch him drop the umbrella and fall on his back. Ignore his screams, continue climbing. Hear the cries of pain and the screams of people as they run towards you. Wave at the honking cars, squint into the blinking headlights. Take one last look at the man bathing in crimson. Jump off the bridge and into the highway.

Scream when the body falls on your windshield. Slam on the brakes before hitting the streetlight. Brace for impact just as the airbag rushes towards your face.

Jump out of bed at the sound of the crash. Look out the window and witness the streetlight falling fast towards your fence. Swear at the damn thing for destroying it. Call 9-1-1. Tell the operator there’s been a collision. Pull on a pair of pants and drop the phone. Go back to the window and watch for a while.

Hit the lights and place the flares. Do not look at the bodies. Call for backup. Do not look at the bodies.

Park the ambulance in front of the police car. Carry the stretcher to the crumpled blue car. Step over the fallen streetlight and trip over a single boot. Taste the blood from your split lip and curse the darkness. Approach the woman folded over the steering wheel. Wrestle with the door. Swallow hard at the site of the empty car seat with torn straps.

Step away from the window. Put on a shirt and jacket, grab a flashlight. Open the back door and watch the firemen work the car door open. Walk over to the fallen streelight that missed your house by 20 feet. Tell the paramedic with the bloody lip that you don’t know what happened, you only heard the crash and the bang. Catch your balance as you step into a dark mass. Turn on the flashlight and aim it. Catch your balance for the second time as you nearly pass out. Keep the beam of light fixed on the young mans frowning face who lay in your yard.

Spit a wad of blood from your mouth. Walk carefully towards the man with the flashlight. Check the pulse of the motionless body. Load it onto the stretcher.

Thank the paramedic and turn off the flashlight. Go back into the house and make some coffee. At dawn call a Realtor. Sell your house and move far away from the highway.

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