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Adorned in bleach-stained sweatpants repping a college I never attended, my legs are crossed and cradling my laptop. As always, music is flowing from my phone to my headphones to drown out the noise of an overworked brain that is out of vacation days and reluctantly continuing its daily work. Next to my knee, my water bottle is snuggled up to a tub of Aquaphor, and other trinkets are haphazardly occupying the rest of the grey landscape of my comforter; a fork; my medications; a lighter; chargers for my various devices; a scrunchie; my reading glasses from CVS I use…

Blades of grass that had grown over BigWheel tracks and sledding paths brushed up against each other in the night breeze. Darkness, having settled over the land, latched onto any of nature’s limbs it could grab hold of. The blackness intensified as it invaded light’s territory, eating away at the precious biological infrastructure until nothing remained. Insects aimlessly wandered their vast world in search of shelter, only to find their destination missing, having been devoured by a void of space.

Night air during July is able to embrace the bare skin of legs that have been left vulnerable by the shorts, shorts that only cover what was already hidden beneath an oversized sweatshirt, in a way more soothing than breezes delivered in sunlight. The relieving chill of the night time had become my reward for venturing out into the real world for the first time all day during the global lockdown; it replaced the feeling of affectionate bodies pressed together with the non-pressure of darkness. …

The wheel is always moving, its melodic heaving of rushing water is always thumping in the back of our minds. We like to imagine it is meaningless, yet we fear it’s progression so much that we never speak of it.

The winter wind bit my cheeks as I ran. I hardly felt the smacking gusts; the force of my body pushed the nights’ chill up and into my face. Wind wrapped her fingers in my curls, which were covered with a thin layer of sweat, snow, and cheap beer, before returning to the night air (it smelled like a refrigerator) to roam about the city without bounds. The soles of my shoes hit the pavement in time with my lungs taking in air, carrying me quickly. Somehow I knew I wouldn’t slip on the ice.

Krystal Koski

i write things down sometimes.

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