I’ve just decided that women’s hats are coming back into fashion. You have no choice. I’ve made up my mind.
I feel broken. A smashed watch. Pick me up and shake me, and listen to me rattle. All those chipped cogs and rusted springs and tiny bits of bone.
I’m a t.v. that fell out of someone’s truck. If you see me on the side of the road, shattered screen, caked in dirt and grease and gravel, just leave me there to corrode in the rain and the car exhaust. I’m of no use to anyone anyway.
I dream of the Rainbow Bridge. Suicide bridge of East Texas, my mother used to call it. Gray steel and narrow lines and late evening mist rolling across the steep curved pinnacle. It looms in my dreams for months on end.
I dream of dull brown brackish water. The Neches River. The broad bellow of the barges coming down The Sabine Pass. Headed for the Gulf. The sleek line of a white heron standing in the reeds. The swirl and shiver of the current dancing through the pylons, the Rainbow Bridge gazing down from overhead.
I dream of ledges. Of cliffs. Of disappearing acts. Of sink holes and black holes and the empty maw of an abyss opening to swallow me whole.
In a thousand years, when the archeologists find my bones in the layer of sediment that was once the Sabine Pass, they’ll point out the crushed skull, the mangled limbs, and say: there was a girl who understood the world, and knew the only useful response is to take a flying leap off the nearest bridge.
And I will have become a creature made of cloud and rain, of faint stars drowned out by the light pollution of a million careless cities, of glittering shards of glass left behind from beer bottles pulverized by asphalt and car tires.
I will have become the goddess of choked tears and straight razors, of the tops of tall buildings and highway overpasses, of the whispered promises of oblivion in bottles of pills and vodka, of that singular minuscule streak of light and shadow imprinted upon the air every time a soul takes that final leap.