Sitting indoors listening to my friend snoring while a video about war blares in the background. I have some drugs though, so the night should be okay. Bodies everywhere; frozen in violence across a snowy landscape and sunken into the sofa. Above the house, the stars burn and blink like a million small chips in a windscreen. The storm is silent. And then I remember her. She was the most beautiful woman I could remember seeing in a long time. And between there was this effortless intellectual compatibility. Her eyes shined so brightly that they could easily have been made of crystal and it seemed as though there was another world in them. One unlike the world outside. Her body was perfect. And she carried it unpretentiously; graceful as a snake and easy with her movements. I wondered whether I was falling in love. I wondered if I might, too, be going mad. Why not? The feelings coursing through my body (yes, body) were so light and alien that I might as well have been full of pills, like a jar of sweets on a shelf during an earthquake. And soon, with her looking at me like that, saying those words, angling her body in that way, the tremors would shake the jar off the shelf, spilling me all over the grubby floor.
In the end, there was no way for me to make a pass at this woman. I walked away after a handshake. A handshake. We both let go slower than normal.
And as I drove away, feeling my life curl up like a dead man’s toes, I shook my head. Then the laughter came. And I laughed so ecclesiastically that I barely kept the car on the road. That’s it, I thought, instead of choosing love, or even the possibility of love, the chance, I have chosen madness.
I watched a bird disappear underneath the tyres of a car, which spewed its feathers and insides all over the road.
My friends mouth gapes open. There is war everywhere. Though none, it seems, like the one inside.