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The Guitar

The Guitar
A man sits in the corner, and people pass by. People pass by with eyes crammed with judgment, some with pity, and some with pure disgust. With tattered sleeves and a tattered heart; the man sits, and he sits and waits. What is he waiting for? Even he does not know. A long time ago he knew exactly what he wanted, but now his dreams and aspirations are a faint memory that only reawakens what he once was. What he once was.



He started to think, and he started to think so much that it began to hurt. It became hard to tell what had happened and what he knew. The forehead of the man crinkles in discomfort and sorrow. What is he thinking about? Even he does not know. So why is it so painful to think of nothing? Trying to remember how he got in this dirty alley becomes a sick game that he can’t seem to win.
People still pass by, no one speaks to the man, and no one asks if he needs help. Why do people stare, the man wonders. The man reaches his hand out to reach for his salvation; a guitar, simple, shredded splintered guitar. The grey, wrinkled hand of the man grasps the neck of the guitar and a small smile spreads into his eyes. It was almost as if a light had been turned on. This was something that the man would remember.
The man always had dreamt of being someone, of being someone important, and beautiful. The man had always wanted to create sounds that inspired people to move, smile, cry, to feel pain and to feel hope. But of course all of those things had been washed away like a weak bed of soil after a flash flood. It all was planned out, and was crushed in a single, momentous second.
So why is the man just sitting in the corner, solemnly strumming and blind to all the ugly things in the world. Ugly things. The man is lost, and not even he knows it. Oblivious to all things around him, he sings. The sound of his voice is melodic and haunting. People just walk by and stare, wide-eyed. The man thinks back, and reaches into the depths of his cobweb mind trying to understand how he became so lost.
It seemed as if it was not so long ago, but it had been a while since the man had really felt as though there was hope for a prosperous life. The man had just gotten out of high school, full of aspirations, light, and ideas. The man had wanted to be the best at music, a musical god. Things changed once the man was introduced to the monster. The monster seemed so harmless and beautiful at the time, but the man didn’t know the underlying viciousness and dark motive. It was a one-night stand with twisting colors and dark corners that lead him to a life full of highs and lows. The man had no clue that his life would be on a down ward spiral full of false affirmations and no purpose.
The man’s eyes glaze over as he licks his lips with juicy nostalgia and an obvious craving for a rush that only a handful of people would understand. The man needed a high, a high to pick him up from the hole that he’s been buried in for a long time. People keep passing by, and finally one man leans down and plops a small bill with a flick of pity in his wrist and walks on. The man snakes his boney hands out to the bill, licks it, and presses it into the back pocket of his thin jeans.
A small melody escapes his fingers and floats into the air. Music has always been the only thing that pulled him through all of the s*** in his life. Always. Whenever the man had no one or when the man didn’t have one place to go, he toted around his guitar and wrote a song. The man wrote songs about where he was all of the twisted things that he’d been through. The man wrote songs about almost everything that would help him forgive and forget.
The man runs his fingers up and down the frets on the guitar, every single one of the frets remind the man of a place. Each of the notes bring back a specific emotion, or smell. Dropping into a low sound the man is hit with a time when he felt the real pain of losing the one that you love. It was hard now a days for the man to feel any emotion at all, but love always hits the hardest, no matter how numb you think you may be.
People pass by, and each time the looks become more and more emotionless. Everyone stared at the man as if he was just a piece of dirt on the bottom of his or her shoe. But they don’t understand. They don’t understand at all. The man mumbles a string of regrets and continues to play. Slipping his limp hand into his coat pocket he pulls out a small canteen leaking with something that would help him stop thinking so much. Why does the man hide from his past? Even he does not know. The warm, tingling sensation in his throat calmed his nerves and he resettles into the dust in the alley.

But the alcohol does nothing for the man, but of course it’ll take some time for it to kick in. Silently playing his guitar, he thinks more about the mistakes in his life, the dreams that faded into the dark due to his obsession with the rush. The rush only brought momentary happiness, and a life full of regrets.

Sometimes we have to think about the big picture and what exactly we want from life. Sometimes the only momentary rush won’t be the best in the long run. The man slinks down into his soul, his regrets, and his pain and thinks. The man thinks a lot. And the people keep passing by, staring. And life goes on, and the man plays his guitar.




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