The hole in his chest made a hissing sound, like a tired old steam
train grunting into a far away station, and as I twisted and pulled
the knife out, the grating sound of steel on bone made me wince and
brought with it the image of my gnarled old third grade teacher, Mrs.
Oppenheimer, searing into the back of my retina. That old bitch
dragging her whore-red talons across the blackboard would give me
nightmares for years.
He dropped like a stone. I'll never forget the look of pure shock
- pure what-the-fuck shock! - that flickered across his face as he
went down. To this day, I still don't know why I did it. Was it the
heat? The hottest summer on record (EVER!) that sucked even the very
reasoning out of a person? I don't know. I regret it for sure, but
that doesn't make a rat's ass difference now.
1932 was forever ago. The Hindenburg had just gone down in a ball
of German engineered flame and Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were
smoking up the silver screen. I am an old man now and I've paid for
the heat. I've paid a lifetime for a moment's madness. My days left in
this place now are few and I will die with the sound of a hole in a
man's chest hissing in my ears.
First published: August, 2007
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