I was drinking on Tuesday. I was dedicating myself to it. Tall glass of whatever. Then another. I was sitting on the couch in the office, the spare bedroom. My wife was gone. But she’d be back. In her own time. I didn’t have any say. Though I could speak. Outside was winter. The nighttime was heavy—the air cold and damp. Wind pushed against the surfaces. A sheet of ice came loose from the roof and clattered to the ground. The sound like an old glass sliding door opening and shutting. Sudden hush of frigid air cleaving through the heated room. Spooking the skin. Giving it rise. I looked at my glass, the eddying whorls of my fingerprints. I thought of art. Because my father became a septuagenarian last year. The way he stood in the halls of museums. When he could go to them. Because I feel older than I used to be. Or because I am. What was that canvas of black. How’d it get in there. I thought about the woman I love. What’s she up to now? She’d written. Halfway to her friend’s. Some town where I’m not. Wonder if it’s scary. The shelves of clouds. Gray and dark. The morning edging toward night before it even starts. If I had money. A little bit of cash. The roads are covered in ice being broken apart by the rain, and the ice is floating like depressed arctic glaciers. Soon gone from this world. They’ll take another shape and rise. It’s been too long since I’ve worked, so I’ve been writing. Men laugh in the background. I wonder how it would be to live in hotels. Then I remember that I have lived in hotels. Or were they motels? Have I driven drunk before? Sure. With the windows down and the music streaming out and being consumed by whatever ghosts happened to be staggering around in search of windows to shake. How good it is to enjoy and imbibe. Thinking about these things, my trance is occasionally broken. The insulating plastic I’d taped over the window puffed like breath, a sail snapping taut in a lake wind. But it comes back. As usual. The ease of quiet and still. Sometimes it felt as if it was always about to rain.
Favorite Drink: Couple glugs of High West. Ice cube optional. Enjoy.
Edmund Sandoval is a writer living in Chicago.
image: Claire Cantrell Wood, fine graffiti aficionado.