September 9, 2013 Comments Off on Drowning by Katie Karambelas
I am drowning, and it is beautiful.
The pressure on my lungs, the burning sensation in my throat, the haziness of my eyes; they are like links attaching themselves to one another. I can almost hear everything clicking into place as I sink deeper into the bottomless water I’ve found.
I am alone, and yet my memories keep me from being so. The pain is unbearable, but in the best way possible. It is starting to drum out the sounds of the people in my head, the people I will never miss. I will be gone, lost forever, but in a flash everything changes. The water is gone, yet it still chokes me from within.
I open my eyes to blinding light. White and red lights mix together in the distance, making the world turn a hazy pink color, one that reminds me of a sunset. There was a day I watched the sun set last June. I stayed up late in the cemetery. No one living even noticed I was gone, but the dead were friendly, at least.
My body convulses. I’m unsure if the feeling is from my cause or from the frighteningly hot fingertips I feel gripping my arms. I want it to stop, but I can’t move, or speak, or communicate. I can only choke. So I lie here, letting the warm fingertips rub my arms back and forth, back and forth. Slowly, the warmth becomes fire, spreading throughout the rest of me, melting the coldness inside my lungs.
“Jackson. . .” I think I hear someone say.
They know who I am.
I’m three years old, and my mother scoops me up after I scrape my knees.
I’m seven, and Shawn tosses a baseball towards me, smiling and jumping for joy when I catch it.
I’m thirteen, and Melissa kisses me one last time before she moves away forever.
Fourteen, Fifteen, Sixteen, I’m sitting at the lunch table; Shawn sits across from me, his hair has fallen out.
I’m seventeen now, and I’m alone. Posters to donate to Shawn’s memorial fund are splattered across all the walls in the school. I look down the empty lunch table.
I’m still Shawn’s best friend. I’m not Jackson. I’m all alone.
But they know my name.
They know my name.
© 2013 Katie Karambelas
Katie studied screenwriting and fiction writing in college, and hopes to one day pursue her MFA in creative writing. She currently guest blogs for Grads.Co.UK and runs a travel business. Her work has or will be appearing in Bewildering Stories, The Were-Traveler, Down in the Dirt and Prospective Journal. She currently lives in North Carolina. You can find her blog here: writingandwanderlust.wordpress.com