i can barely find my own house

June 23, 2011
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waiting at the traffic light, i rip at my right middle finger nail. i'm left handed. the tear comes quickly, a snag, catch, & the perfect nail i had grown was gone. a jagged line at my quick. blood bubbles up & i swear, because now the light is green & i have to drive with a bloody finger.


i'm rolling forward, past the stupid strip malls & the lame office buildings that fill up this little suburb of mine. i hate it, i hate it all so much & i jab the buttons to make my cd play. it's a mix my boyfriend made for me right before he walked out of my life.


his name is Nate. i haven't seen him for 5 months. "good riddance" i mutter under my breath as the songs he put together for me play, too loud almost, so i roll down my window to let some of the sound out. the blood on my finger smudges on the roller & it stings, bad. i wince & retract my hand quickly to the wheel.


i need to get home. the clouds are whirling around in the bright blue sky. my car, old as it is, rattles as i go over a pothole. i hate this part of the suburb. i hate all the parts of the suburb. i want something other than absolute sameness everywhere i look. & i'm looking hard right now. i peer at a street sign--is this my turn off?


i turn anyway, but i'm unsure. it's so hard to tell when everything looks the same. i just want to go home. have a place that is my home, not a house that i live in. Nate's mix for me plays on. i want to scream f*** him, but i can't. something stops the words on my lips.


i'm on the right street, the clouds turn faster & faster & i wonder, will they turn into a tornado? but home is soon, i speed up my car anyway, even though i don't want to be home. i don't know where i want to be. just away from here. these stupid streets & stupid people who live here. how'd i end up living the life i said i never would, the life i hate?


Nate, oh god. why can't i stop thinking about it? it's been 5 months, but i guess that's love for you. maybe i shouldn't have listened to his mix, it brings back too many memories that i'm not sure i should deal with yet. i haven't thought about him for a few weeks but somehow music makes you remember more than anything else ever could.


i'm driving the car slower now, looking for my house. i've lived there for nearly 8 years & i still can't tell it apart from my neighbors. i see it now though, garage door open, revealing my father's car that he probably just drove home from work. i don't want to be there. i don't want to have to pretend to be happy to live in a middle class suburb where i can barely find my own house. i can't be happy about that so i won't.


i drive past my house, my pretend home where my parents & brother so contentedly live. the clouds stop moving so fast & i look up at the blue sky, but i'm driving, so i turn back to the roads. i make my turn that will lead me out of the suburbs. the music plays on. i'm still upset, even though i have no reason to be.


i don't know where i'm going, i have no idea. but i've got time & i've got a car. i've got music & i've got thoughts left to think today. f*** this stupid suburb, & everyone who chooses to live in it. i'm pulling the pieces of my life apart & looking at them in my head. why can't everyone do the same?


my car splashes through a puddle, made by a car wash service, a little water gets in my windows & lands in my lap. i start from my reverie, pressing down on the gas a little more. i'm going, i'm going. watch me go.





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