Taylah Marsh, Grade 11, All Saints College
Its one of those things you can’t control. Once it has you, it has you. Once it touches your lips, once you have smelt its intensity, once you let it find its way inside of you. It becomes a part of you. It’s your history now.
I only did it sometimes. But then it became my obsession. Every night, to everyday, every few hours, to every moment I was awake. It becomes your mind, your face, your conscious.
It was about 4 months ago. I can remember it like my name. Better yet what is my name?
“Try this.” Luke handed me something. It was white and cylinder shaped scrunched paper. It smelt alright. He lit it and put in my mouth. A few drags, and I felt it.
“What is this stuff?” I asked him.
“Stuff,” Said Luke.
I had a few that night, about 5 I think. I found my way home, in a taxi, I thought it was a train, on a road I thought was a river and then I swam in my bed of dreams, staring at pretty colours on the roof. Then shut my eyes to open a reality, I didn’t know.
Waking that next morning, yeah I felt sick.
I was making my way down the road driving 60km/h and having de ja vu. “I swear I had seen that sign before.” Walked into work, threw my gear on my desk, picked up my letters of the day. Flicking through them there was a note, signed ‘Unnamed’.
‘Tonight 173 Marco Av, 8.00p.m sharp? See you there…hope so.’
“I was guessing he wanted to see me again.”
7.00pm walked in the door at home. Got in the shower and started singing to myself, weird hum’s and rhythms. I pushed my head up so I was staring into the running water, this reminded me of something. I just didn’t know what it was. I got dressed and went to the address I was given. I didn’t think I wanted to go, but something in me craved it.
I walked in the door only to be greeted by clouds of smoke.
“Hey, I didn’t think you were coming?” asked Luke as he grabbed me around the waist and pulled me inside the room.
I looked down at my watch it was 7.56 I wasn’t late and I wasn’t early.
“Here! Have this its safe, don’t worry.” A glass was handed to me, forced into my cold hand.
I drank the liquid that was contained in the glass and started to loosen up. I was talking to all sorts of people. The ones with crazy looking faces and accents, well that’s how it seemed. He then handed me that scrunched up looking paper thing. He lit it again and once again, I was taking drags. My eyes peeled at the train coming my way.
“JUMP!” I screamed. I grabbed Luke’s arm and pulled him across the room.
“What are you doing? Luke questioned.
“Just stay down!” I said as I scrambled behind the couch.
“It hurts!” I yelled, as I was blocking my ears.
“What does?” Luke pushed me down and held me to the ground. I kicked and screamed and tried to beat my way out of his grip.
“Let go of me you creep!” I looked at his hands they were green and orange, his face all blue and black. I was experiencing my imagination take control. I just didn’t know it.
I managed to escape his hold and make way for the back door. On my way out I picked up more of the scrunched up little white things, and took the lighter. I sat on the trampoline and had them to myself. It was as if everything was appearing before me. I was talking to the dead and the alive.
I made a friend that night, a piece of grass. I name him Greenie. Getting home wasn’t a problem; I rode some horse that I had found.
Waking that next morning I had found that I was in my bed. In clothing that I don’t think I own, but now I do. Being the normal person I ‘was’ I got up and got ready for work. When I had arrived at work, I felt flustered. I couldn’t get through the work I had to do. I was craving foods, craving things that were unknown to my conscious mind. That day there was so much going on. I headed down to the bar after work and had a few drinks.
“Excuse me miss?” said the bartender.
“That man over there asked me to give this to you.” He handed me a napkin with writing on it. He pointed over to the door. By the time I looked the person had left. Upon the napkin had written;
‘89 Melvone St. 9.30pm. Get together. See you there.’
I assumed it was again, Luke.
I was looking for an outing and some form of get out and relax because these drinks weren’t doing it, and I wasn’t dead yet. So I went, as normal as ever. Walked in, unfamiliar faces seem to know me.
“Hi.” Someone waved at me.
“Oh hey. How was your day?” asked another.
“Um fine thanks.” I replied.
These people knew me but I was unsure how.
It was that night I saw before I knew and lived. I looked over at Luke and other friends of his. They were all smoking at these white things that I had been doing every night. There eyes wide and talking deep thoughts. It something that you sense has been happening all along, but this didn’t stop me.
“Hey! Come over here. Take one, my shout.” Luke said.
He handed me a white scrunched thing. I happily took it in and my surroundings. I had a few more. Again I was in that state of mind where everything flashes before me, leaving me to my own demise.
It was once again that time. The time that I felt I had to leave. This time though I took many more with me, more of my Greenie friends. I plucked them from the ground and placed them in my bag. Soon enough to find my way home on boat and an amazing bird that would put me in my room.
That morning I awoke hesitantly. I felt strange, felt like I couldn’t let go of the chains that held my hands, they didn’t exist but I could feel them. I pushed myself out of bed and hasted to the bathroom.
“I asked you to stop! You wouldn’t!” I yelled at the mirror.
“Why do you look like this? I was found in you, you’re not you?
I took the white scrunched thing in my hand lit it and breathed all eternity in. I found myself lighting one and another.
I had to make my way to work. In my coffee break, I took another one out, only to put the detonator in the mouth of destruction.
I had a pile of papers on my desk. I placed my friend Greenie down and he lit these papers on fire, he seems to always make things better. As they burned and withered away my boss approached. He took out an extinguisher and put an end to the flaming confusion of papers.
“You’re not you anymore!” He exclaimed.
“Then who am I? Who are you to say who I am!” I replied.
“I want you out of here by this afternoon. Then when you find yourself again we might talk.” He ended and exited flustered and looking confused, having to answer to other staff’s gazes.
I threw my chair across the room and screamed, pulled out another friend as he left the room and lit him. He made me feel better.
I packed up my stuff and left the office. Got home and had a voice mail on my answering machine. It was Luke.
“Hey, are you coming tonight? It’s at 78 Jason Place. Midnight.”
I had lost my job, didn’t speak to my family and I knew I had a friend in Luke and Greenie, and all those other scary faced people and weird accented people, you know, my friends.
I packed up my stuff and wrote down my thoughts. I had so much stuff running through my head.
I found my way to that party, still as high on life as ever. I had over 5 attempts at the white scrunched up paper stuff. I was contemplating. I had nothing left. I was turning into a beast. I didn’t know who I was going to be. It’s who I was meant to be.
“Let’s go for a walk,” asked Luke.
“Ok. I guess why not.”
We were walking down the ivy ridden path. The tree’s had faces. The moon looked on. We were talking, I don’t know what about.
“Why is it that you brought yourself down to this?” Asked Luke.
“What do you mean?”
“You’ve changed. You use to be ok. Now you’re over the top. I think you need to stop what you are doing.” Whispered Luke.
“I’m doing what you told me too. Letting go, I’m being this.” I whispered back.
“Well maybe you should try something else.”
He handed me a knife. I looked at him in utter silence.
“Look it doesn’t hurt,” he cut a slice in his arm. I clenched my fists and watched in horror but to some extent my body didn’t care. He took my arm and did the same.
“Such a beautiful canvas, to create stories and memories.”
He then cut my shoulder and moved on.
“Stop this! I don’t like it.” I screamed and pushed away from him. I turned and made way through the forest. Trees were laughing at me the ground was spinning.
“Come back here!” Luke yelled.
I ran as fast as I could, made it to an apartment building on the last street I was to ever know. Got in the door and made it to the 13th floor.
“I know you are up here somewhere! I just want to talk. Just listen to me. You’re not well” Luke yelled.
I stood out on the roof top. I could see the whole city. I looked at my cut body covered in the red paint he had painted me with, the yellow skin that had patched purple. My feet looked so far away, my dress torn and revealing. There was so much distance in the air and I couldn’t make it leave. I waved my arms around my head to clear my thoughts. Contemplating isn’t something we want to do. Our mind fills us with thoughts. Is it that simplicity is yet so complex? That this was going to happen? That is was already played in the cards for me. I was the one, I gave shadows substance.
And with that I screamed “I’ll be the writer of my own destiny!”
From that 13th floor I had gone. The moon looked on as he looked on. For that last 20 seconds of my life I had shone. The moon had hit my face with the city lights dimming around me, and the world just suddenly got quiet….