The Winter Their Apartment by Adam Gnade-0

The Winter Their Apartment by Adam Gnade-0

It is winter again and you are fighting with your woman. From outside the apartment on the hill leading up Broadway, pressed against cold window glass, the warm glow you'd see would be Norman Rockwell Life–NBC and a Christmas tree–wrapping paper tubes unraveled on the couch, presents half-wrapped, shoeboxes–their lids off–open and waiting, where the dregs of pizza boxes, chewed-on crusts, and red wine jugs sit. Sliced cheese or cubed provolone gone dark yellow on white paper plates.

Your hands thrown over your head; her eyes wet and red. And from outside the window you would see a symphony, a tragic comedy, and song and dance blues, or election year blues, wartime blues, love-life blues, growing up blues, the sorrow of ancient oak tree deep root pained.

And San Diego winter, where at 6 a.m., you and her drive to work and see your breath in steam billows, to jobs you hate and to making money that goes God knows where.

Up the street the cars line Broadway, their windows fogged with dew drops and dripping on the concrete.

Southern California morning, the bums are staggering out of wet bushes draped with spider web trails and damp pant cuffs, scratching brown beards and wondering where their life went, and how did they get to this, and whether they'd ever touch a woman again. And oh, for one last grasp of warm teenage breasts they felt in the back of a car, high school homecoming night maybe, 1985, or somewhere near there, an elegant young body or smooth long side and the eyes of shivering nervous, of a woman that wants you because you are good and you are worthy and you make her feel good. But never again; they are resigned to that–nothin'-but-dollar-coffee at 7-11 and another day waiting for handouts and hobo death.

The nights, now, are filled with talk and then quiet, where you feel dumb and thick-mouthed–can't say nothin' but mumble and plead your case. You were never brave like she is, so you sit and drink and grow hard skeleton face and scare her, scare your family too, while your body rots, while your muscle goes to fat, then sagged skin, while your brain goes evil, with squiggling worms and flitting haints, the spirits of soul leaving your body.

So she delivers sermons and speeches, implores you to get the hell out of the city.

"We'd be so much happier," she says.

You could quit your jobs and run away like you used to, back when you did things just because, and because it felt good to run away, and because you didn't worry so much like you do now... just because, and leave the assholes behind and fuck 'em anyway; they don't mean shit.

She says it doesn't matter what; run, hide, retreat, surrender, or your apartment will be your grave.

Credited to Adam Gnade 
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