Is longevity an accomplishment, or does sticking around for the marathon mean a deal with the devil?
Being far too suburbanized to display it in my den, I have a photo hanging on the wall of my mind, which reminds me, on those days when I am thinking of my longevity as an accomplishment, that I have struck a deal with the devil to live with less intensity in order to stick around for the marathon, instead of running the all-out sprint like the lovely young girl in the photograph, by the party dress not long returned from a romantic night out of sipping cocktails beneath the stars. In the soft, muted light of dawn, she is lying on the driveway, face sideways, her long black hair, in an eerie optical illusion, seems to be moving in a pool of blood. The gun is still in her hands. Her dog, a large German Shepherd, no doubt her only faithful companion, is standing over her like a protector. His perked up ears and wide eyes suggest that the wail of sirens has just split the quiet suburban morning. Soon, the curtains in the neighborhood will move in curiosity, and the news will start to spread from house to house, through the phone lines, sizzling with the story.
“Have you heard?”
“They say it was all over a boy.”
“Can you believe it?”
“Didn’t she know there were other fish in the sea?”
“What a shame.”
“What a waste,” the marathoners all agree and say so to one another.
Photo by Kristaps B.