The yellow canvas blind, unfurled across the window as a surety against the threat in the sky, delivers – courtesy of the little bruised light remaining – the impression of sunshine. It is as thin as a caress. It doesn’t fool him. He counts from ten to one, backwards, in little staccato gasps. What does it mean? What does it mean?
The spit spot spit of the rain on the roof takes him into the undercurrent of misremembered time. He was a child in this luscious storm. Yesterday, was it, or tomorrow? He was a child in rubber boots, with water lapping around his feet and a wave of uncertainty cold in his head. Was. Is. Will be.
He waits for yesterday to begin and tomorrow to end. The architecture of everyday escapes him. In the darkness he recognises the rough nap of velvet, the hot smell of a bulb through ripped paper. Here is a cushion and there is a lampshade. These are the things he knows. The lamplight hurts his eyes and the shadows on the walls leer at him whichever way he turns.
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