Chambery Challes Les Eaux

by A R Dreshaj

Reading the yellow wallpaper, Im having serious thoughts about tearing off yellow wallpaper of my own. Except mine is purple.

Id like to start at the door. Thered be a nice corner to peel, Im sure of it. My mind flicks forward, or turns over, like the pages in a calendar. Right now we are in Geneva. The train windows, the sky, the trees, the lake, flash bulbs in my mind. They blur because the train is moving so fast. Or maybe my memory works like a flick book they use to create cartoons. I want to stay on this train forever.

Further back between Geneva and France, I look at a girl named Natalia and I bind my hearts ribbons to her. I know she is the same age as me (twenty two). I know she was over here visiting a boy who worked here, like I was. I wonder what sort of life she had and has, I wonder if she cries for him. I wonder if they are still together now, think I doubt it, and then scowl at myself for my own cynicism. In our time together we share much more than company. I know her birthday is on the 24th of October, which is the day I was due to be born. I was early (four days) but I look past this. It must mean something. She starts a new life in Canada on the 18th of February, which is his birthday. I find so many hidden meanings and convince myself this is absolutely the work of fate. These dates whisper their great significance to me and how could anyone fail to see? Isnt it so obvious? Lets stick together. I can still hear her say it.

Are we some dirty reflection of eachother?

I remember sitting down on the train. We begin to move, slowly at first, then we fly forward and all I see is the snow, God, the snow on the Alps. It cant be real. It hides everything else from view. Who is this girl sitting opposite me?

Mine and Natalias silence is all we have and I cling to it. And somehow, I think we are missing and wishing for the same thing. It fills the air around us and the distance between us and I am so glad we are in this together. Let us stick together.

I wonder if the girl kills herself in the yellow wallpaper.

Please, please, my begging evaporates. I dig my nails to the seat. I dont want to ever get off this train.

I see it happening as if Im watching from above, nails clawing at the linoleum floor but reality has me by the ankles and his pull is much too strong. I try to grab Natalia but she doesnt offer her hand, I dont understand it, I snatch at her leg and its no use, grab the linoleum to buy myself some time, the suitcase but it falls, the chair upon which I sat and he yanks me off with ease, the table but its no use. Anchoring myself to anything. As if I stand a chance.

Its too real.

Shes alive. She rips off all that retched yellow paper and sets herself free. She steps over him.

Im never getting off this train.

I can feel my body under his hands.

The first drag of a cigarette pours into my lungs. The sun is blinding. Camel blues.

We walk in the dark, the snow builds and I swat the wall. It sprays like glitter.

The cue cracks the white ball and we watch the buzzing atoms.

The snow falls so thick and fast. The night sky looks white.

A day too late.

I wanted her to die.

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