Time Is Distance

In the sickly-lit, clogged up contagious space that was the shopping centre; you were there telling your friend you had to pack jelly cups for the trip to Brisbane.

I floated by, anxious, not bothering to say hi.

That day I had mixed sleeping pills and energy drinks, pretending I was messed up. And I had gone across the road from my house to where palms were often rubbed together. There were no shoestrings on the power lines but I was pretty sure I knew. Left there with less money than I knew what to do with. Decided I’d spend it on a movie, something sad and arty.

I felt especially guilty when I passed you, your beanie firm on your head, soft copper hair curling around your cheeks; clinging delicately like spider silk. A small whiff of your smell reached me. Well it was probably your shampoo but I still liked it. Soap and berries.

My eyes remained lidded as I grew more tired and a cloud continued to carry me. I saw the policeman pop up in front of me like a funny friend’s scary surprise. My expression must have puzzled everyone. I tried to smile politely at him while my face was stricken as I turned my head to your voice calling my name behind my shoulder. In my mind I was clean, he had nothing on me but I felt my right hand clawing absently at my back pocket in panic and then…

Then I was falling. I was falling sideways onto the cold store floor and just like everyone else; I seemed to be watching myself.

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