This is another artifact

This is another artifact. I can feel when one gets caught up in me, physically, in a layer of my skin that feels sore in a continuous dull sheath around my body. I have thought, at the onset of the feeling, in the past, that I could not physically soothe it without clawing through myself, and I didn’t know what I would find. I shivered like there was an old man in me, right below the surface. If I bled myself he would seep out and dry onto paper his real voice, when, every so often, I feel him struggling to whisper through my skin. An ink wash of some time out of sorts.

You said you weren’t going back to Los Angeles. You felt old there. Even the old people you saw in their cars and out of the high window were youthful in a lubricated way. You told yourself that in this moment you were old, but that time had built other yous, you just couldn’t find them here or now.

You and he fled to the desert for its silence and you faced the dark on the hood of his car in the night. Jacky’s voice was silent. It was a pure evocation of the past, as silent words and looks only can be. You augured his breath. It was a whisper to the future built from your shared memories. It grew louder by indivisibly small increments as he slowly mouthed airy tendrils and your name, Jack, a hesitant filament blooming forward into future reminiscences. The name was emptily alien, as if it was inhaled. It was the epiklesis that would summon something other than a person, the cool lunar breeze and the summer fog of stars. Jacky’s voice never quite captures the fullness of the moment as you chase it. It echoes back to you the thought you just had, the chill you just stifled, from the silence of rock chasms and sand dunes in night. When the words drift away you don’t search for them. When he follows them you will leave him in the desert. Yet here you are, you and he, silent night and long day, in each breath a length of time.

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