I’m confused by reality. Things happen too quickly and people say what they don’t mean. I know I’m insane and perhaps that’s why the world is crazy. Or maybe, the world is upside down and I’m right-side up. Society is compelled to ignore me, but there are some who won’t leave me alone.

“Get a job, you homeless bum!” Screams a skateboarder and I keep walkin, paying him no mind. There’s a man who rides his bicycle through Renton and always gives me the time of day. “Doug, how yah doin?”

“Okay, I guess.” This man watches out for me. He’s lookin so that I don’t feel so alone. There are two ladies who bring me sandwiches under the bridge.

“Doug, do you have enough to eat? Are you warm at night?”

“I’m okay.” They don’t want to know. I’m never alone. Duncan keeps me company. He’s my guardian demon, but I tell him… “Go away! I don’t need you!”

And he laughs. He stays with me at night and I’ve gotten used to him. I watch the pigeons cooing above me. They put me to sleep and ever so often, Duncan breaks a few necks just to make me feel bad. I can’t fight him. I can’t get away from him. He tells me to do things I don’t want to do.

I can’t go back to the clinic because they’ll strap me down for 48 hours and I’ll be with all those ill people who make me feel even more insane. I need to talk to my daughter and tell her I’m okay, but to do this, I’ll need to get some LSD. The dealer in the neighborhood can sell me some, but it’ll cost 200. I’ll have to rob somebody down by the river; probably on a Saturday.

I get to sleep at night, clutching my K-Bar I used to kill Vietcong in ‘65.

In the twilight, I see a bicyclist park next to the trail and walk down to the river. I keep out of sight and reach into his bicycle bag. There’s a lunch and a wallet in there. I removed the cash and his credit card, and take up hiding under the bridge. When he returns, he has a bloodied K-Bar in his right hand. I check my sleeping bag and my knife is missing. I get a sinking feeling and wait for him to go. Duncan starts to talk to me again, but I ignore him. “It feels good, doesn’t it?”

“What?”

“Killing a man after all these years. You know how many lives he’s ruined.”

“Quiet, I didn’t do anything!”

“Really? Why don’t you check down by the river? Tell me you didn’t shove your knife into ‘im.

I walk down to the water and check the body, along with his pockets. There’s a roll of 2,000 dollars and some capsules.

“No LSD.” But then I check my pockets and find the drugs. I had them all along. Not wanting to understand reality, I take them anyway, seeing my crime, clearer than day. Duncan laughs, but his laughter is farther away now. I up the dosage. And the next day, I find a pay phone and punch in the number.

“Yes?” Whispers a kind voice.

“It’s daddy; daddy loves you.”

One thought on “Reality or Not?

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