Note to Self

November 26, 2017
By gracet SILVER, Chalfont, Pennsylvania
gracet SILVER, Chalfont, Pennsylvania
5 articles 0 photos 0 comments

"Dear Ed, in a sec, you'll hear a thump."

He paused and stared out the apartment window. The hurricane brought hail, and with hail came the endless clacking against the finger-smudged glass, echoing through the room sounding like gunshots. He decided that if he closed the blinds, it wouldn’t bother him so much. 

So he did.

He didn’t have much light, but he continued to write anyway. His pen scratched the wrinkled napkin but kept tearing up the soft fabric. He grunted, and figured that he'd have to start over.

So he did. 

Too bad I ran out of paper, he thought. He grabbed another napkin and as he placed it on the hollow desk, he stared once again at the now blinded windows and sighed. The hail clicked and clacked and clucked away. He shuffled over, opened the blinds, and pushed the window to be met with a slap of freezing wind. He noticed the crusted ice that had been collecting on the small stone ledge. He noticed how the small blinking tears rolling off the jagged ice reflected the bright city lights from down below. 

How nice it would be, he thought, to gaze at the luminescent lights while he plummeted to his death.
After a couple minutes, he decided to keep the window open. Besides, he thought, it wasn’t going to matter soon, anyway. So he did. He quickly glanced at his watch, surrounded by scratched up leather. It was a nervous habit. It had grown later than he expected, and he realized the work that needed to be done. He needed to finish his letter. He shuffled back to the hollow desk and attempted to scribble on the soft napkin, rubbing so hard that ink had seeped through the ballpoint pen and was edged into the desk. I am going to finish this letter, he thought, but I need to finish with a bang. 

A final bow, a grand finale, except, there would be no encore. He chuckled, and shook his head slightly, closing his eyes and looking down to his lap. These words wouldn’t be his "bang". In fact, the final bang would be the hard slap of body parts mushed onto the ground, startling pedestrians, creating a scene, and so on.

The beautiful irony and the perfect image led to the thought of, what would his last words be? In fact, his final words would not technically be on this letter. His last words would be spoken to the bellman, late that night. "Thank you," were going to be his last words. As if he had the world to thank for anything in his life.

The insignificant irony lightly dawned upon him as he sat, and a scowl grew across his face as he pondered aimlessly, not about the act he was about to commit, but about simple things. What would the weather be like tomorrow, what would happen on his favorite soap opera, and so on. His thoughts had wandered off until they were brought back by the white noise of the storm that began to ring in his ears, sending a sharp pain through his nerves and down to his fingertips.

He looked over and noticed that his nails had turned blue and the hairs on his arms stood straight up. He swore at himself for opening the window this late, and slowly pulled it shut. Unaccompanied by his hand, the pen he was holding grew cold to the touch. He decided if he could pick up the frozen pen his hands could warm it, then he could write and he could finally be done. 

So he did.

"Dear Ed, in a sec, you'll hear a thump." Surprisingly, the pen cooperated and danced elegantly across the napkin, producing graceful loops and curves in ink. He continued to write:

"Dear Ed, in a sec, you'll hear a thump. Don’t worry."

He couldn’t write much more after that. And by then, his loops and curves became jagged with no purpose. Endless scribbles with beginnings but no ends, ends but no beginnings. He decided to get another napkin. He wanted it to be perfect, an incredible ending to his incredibly shittty story. 

So he did. 

He grabbed yet another napkin and put the tip to the cloth. His hand laced around circles and danced to the beat of his pen. But he soon noticed instead of words, he was creating lines and loops, these lines and loops creating a picture. One of him falling, hands outstretched and embracing the impact. He drew the iced window and the luminescent lights and the dark night that shadowed his face. With a long exhale of air, he imagined every single moment. From cracking the window open, to his feet slipping, to his hand hugging the rushing air, to his eyes closing, and then to nothing.

After his pen finally settled, he pushed his chair back and examined the torn up napkin. He cocked his head and stared. For how long, he didn’t know. After some time, the smirk on his stick figure made him feel uneasy, the sly smile that caused his body to cave.

He cradled his stomach, knees to his chest and eyes hidden, just to make the feeling stop.

Once it subsided, he decided to check his watch. It was getting late, too late. He needed to finish this letter so he could finally be done.

So he did.


he didn’t. He reached for the pile of napkins in the corner of his hollow desk, but his hand was met with the cold oak wood, so he decided.


Tomorrow he would go to the store on 5th avenue and buy more paper. 

Tomorrow, he would shout his final words to whomever would listen. 

Tomorrow, he would finish his letter and be done. 

Tomorrow, he would just have to wait until tomorrow. 

Don’t worry, he thought. I just have to wait for tomorrow. 

So he did.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.


MacMillan Books

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!