It was on his back that he decided to turn to offer up the ghost he never believed in on the proverbial silver platter whose intensified reverberations he could actually feel beneath him even though it was a mirage like so many others around him. They were like waves of laser, of nuclear cyclone, of Earth core. The sky had turned the color of berry jam and seemed to modulate with each raking of his lids to blink. He felt but did not turn to salute the pointing star that glared through it, probably in diamond yellow-white, painting his left cheek to ash. He detected the arch in the small of his back and flew backwards to the large nearly empty room in which he curled back on the curved bench and could smell the faint pungency of the varnish. He slowly breathed in through his nostrils but hacked the air out in a shudder with the sand that had attacked. It squirreled over him like an ant army preparing for a minute but fierce siege. He lost the room, the bench, the varnish in a last look at the magenta sky. It pulled away into the black of space to the stinging of the pelting grains of which alone he was keenly aware.