Friday, October 31, 2008

A Letter to Mariam Concerning My Accident

Second, this letter was written about a year ago before I even started the Letters to the Internet, but I updated it and fleshed it out a little the other day. It's totally made up, for entertainment purposes only. I figured a spooky letter for Halloween would be a good a thing as any to take a break on.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy it. I still can't believe any of these ever get read.

Dear Mariam,

How are you? You and Max? Doing well, I hope. Is he still getting you where you need to go? For the training you both went through I hope he can at least get you to the market and back in one piece.

I miss you both so much. Yes, even Max. Even fleabag Max. Out here any familiar face would be welcome. Even a long furry one. Hospitals always have so many people, but it never really helps the loneliness. But, you didn't know I was in a hospital. I'm rambling. Let me back up.

I saw Robert last night. Again. Out on highway 83 this time. My meeting ended early so I decided to get a head start on the next leg of my trip. 10 PM, middle of nowhere, looking just like the day he left. Just like last time.

I hit him, Mariam. I was going at least 87. That's always where I set the cruise. Odd number, huh, 87? Might as well be going 90 but those 3 less miles per hour just make me feel safer. I mean, the cops have never appreciated the difference. I guess people put so much stock in multiples of five and ten that anything in between just doesn't seem real. 87 might as well by the speed of blue or hot dogs.

So, anyway, I hit him.

Dear God, honey, the man came apart like 150 pounds of loose hamburger meat. He split apart in the middle at his waste. The lower half was still exploding when it was pulled under and masticated by the under carriage of the Buick. The top half came flying over the hood and his face flattened against the windshield. Like a goddamned cartoon. His arms were spread wide and flailing in the wind. Like when he was a kid and would pretend he was an airplane.

I tried to keep going, baby. I didn't even slow down. I shifted in my seat to look over what was left of his shoulder and just kept going down the highway. I thought I could make it. To a town, a gas station, a house, anything. I swerved a little to throw him off, but he wouldn't budge, so I decided to floor it.

Then he started talking. Jesus, Mariam, why did he have to talk? He never used to talk. Not with you.

At first I didn't notice. Then, the windshield splashed red. I looked at his face and it was blood, pouring out of his mouth and nose. The impact had busted out some of his teeth and the gaps had become valleys for rivers of blood to rush through. It flowed out in a thick stream and then sprayed spatter across the glass as the air burst out of him to speak. Or, actually, to scream. It was mostly screaming. My name, your name, your sister in law. What was her name? Sheena?

I couldn't take it, hon. The sight I can take. I mean, I don't LIKE to see Robert all torn to pieces like that but I can take it. And, I'm not saying I'm a stronger or a better person than you because you COULDN'T take it. I'm just saying he's not, or you know, wasn't, my brother. Not blood brother. So, I can take it. But, the screaming. That fucking screaming. It was like a mother screaming while watching her baby burn to death. Part anger, part pain, mostly pure hell.

I slammed on the brakes and, I guess, fish tailed into a ditch. A state trooper happened to be a few miles up the road so he found me before I bled to death. I didn't tell him about Robert, who was gone by the time the patrol car pulled up. And I didn't tell the doctors about you.

I'd already ruptured my right ear drum when they pulled me out of the crushed Buick. The doctors here say the hearing loss for that on is permanent, but without much sympathy. I imagine it must have been a lot like how they found you. Only, I was trying to push a ball point pen into my left ear instead of using a letter opener to take out my eyes in the middle of a crowded daycare.

If I had told them about what happened to you they would have used words like "hallucination" and "toxins" and told us to move to a new apartment and see a shrink. When, what we need is a goddamned priest.

Oh well. For now I still have one ear to hear your sweet voice with.

So, Im about to go to bed. As with the others, I'm not mailing this. Wouldn't be much point in giving you a letter now, anyway. I'm just going to toss it in the trash and let the nurses try and read my hen scratch if they care to try.

I'll call you later to let you know where I am and how work is going. I think I'll leave Robert and my ear out. No sense in upsetting you. Pet fleabag for me. Don't let him lead you to any more liquor stores. I know you haven't gotten used to the brail books or your cane yet, but, a bottle of Johnny Walker isn't going to help any of that. Besides, Robert hates it when you drink. And, if he's decided not to come back for me tonight, my blood chills to think where he'll end up.

For God's sake, Robert. I know you're reading over my shoulder.

It was an accident. It was an accident and we're sorry. You know we're sorry. You aren't scorned or completing unfinished business. This state you're in, this place, it's freed you to be the psychopath you always wished you were. A goddamn monster with all the trimmings. Fuck you, Robert. Fuck you until the hounds find you and drag your crazy ass down to the bowels of Hell.

If I had it all to do over again, I would have shot you instead. I would have shot you in cold blood you mother, fucking, freak.


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