Noise – Short Story #29


Green and yellow trees blurred and mixed together like a painter’s palette as she sat silent in the backseat of a taxicab, gazing out the window, thoughtless. She was leaving. Had to. No choice, no freedom. And no. It wasn’t fear she felt, I imagine, it wasn’t even anger, it was total and complete indifference, a kind of peace, I suppose, call it “utter apathy”. She simply did not care. What did that make her?

But whatever she was he made her this way. She died years ago, though she couldn’t possibly say when, of course. He was merciless. He was unwaveringly, psychotically besides himself, at all times a dual man, two in one, a hypostatic disunity, he was the damned, the all Unholy Binary, the Jeff and the Jeff. Unbegotten from 1956, indivisible, unchanging, eternal, omniimpotent, the darkness of darkness, man of true man, born of a whore at a penthouse in south Boston, never suffered a day in his life. Until this day. Or she thought. I Imagined.

Unsuffering, unmoved, she sat silent. Benevolent—pah! But me? I couldn’t resign myself to sitting. I knew what happened, in truth, I knew the way things were with her, I could see it in the light. It wasn’t that I didn’t love her, it wasn’t that we weren’t…in love, if love’s what you’d call it, no, no, it wasn’t that. I loved her religiously. That is to say, without feeling. Why would you say that, now? I don’t know. I never know. I feel nothing, let alone, hah, love, hahaha, love!—whatever that was. I felt not the breeze on hot summer days. Wrong. You do! Certainly, barely. No lies. Listen now..No. No, we only thought it. Once upon a time, that’s all. Stop making me look…I only thought…no. It is I. Damn we.

But I know something went wrong, as I was saying, with her, that is, she resented me, I know it, somehow, knowing not why or how or what for. No, yes, but it’s not our fault, but no, yes, yes, be humble now, be honest, it is, it is not. Yes. I know the truth, truly.

The truth meant nothing to me, I am certain of it. Meant everything and nothing. I knew so much and so little, next to nothing, barely.

My world, my light, my love! What am I saying, I don’t love her, but yes, I do! no. Yes. Only yes. But it doesn’t matter. She is gone now. I am alone. We are alone. It doesn’t matter. No! Chase after her! There’s still time. Leave now, you’ll catch her, it matters, this matters! Truly! Barely. Why, don’t you know, I don’t know, nothing, eh, matters more! Yes, yes, believe it. No, I’m unconvinced. We’re convinced. Go now. No. She’s decided. Well so? If it doesn’t matter to her it doesn’t matter if it matters to me, which it doesn’t. To me to me!—to us. Together. It matters. No, to me. It doesn’t. No. Nothing, everything, matters.

I am weeping. No we aren’t, stop it, weep no more, pathetic—stop yelling. It’s alright. Weep today, feel better tomorrow. Promises. Pah! No promise of that. How desperate you are. We are not. Maybe, hope! Ah yes, the language of fools. Pah! A fool…in love…now no, no, stop it! I won’t allow for loathing. I pity you. I pity me. Best someone does it. Better no one. I think. Unlikely. Who asked you? Me. Smile now. Why? Just. No. Smile. No. Yes. Never. Forever.

NoYes. All is noise. Silence.


Sitting alone the patient dreamed, Jeff dreamed.

“Good, now make him happy.”

“Yes, sir.”

“Is he happy?”

“Yes, sir.”

“You’re sure of it?”

“Yes, sir.”


“Yes, sir.”

“And you’re sure you’re sure he’s happy?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Good. Then he is happy.”

“Yes, sir.”

. . .

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