Last night in the meeting he struggled to stay awake. The soporific rhythm of the speaker’s voice, the comfortable chair that moulded round him, that feeling of safety in the company of friends all helped him relax and as his pulse slowed he started to experience tiny black outs. Every time he slipped out’ve consciousness he saw the image of a brutal concrete sculpture streaked with filthy stains. Each time he woke he was assailed by a cacophony of images.
The fake wood table top roared at him, the feet beneath it emanated dull thuds.
The strip lights overhead howled like tortured souls & his body generated a screeching, shuddering noise like two pieces of metal scraping against one another. For an hour he struggled to stay awake being attacked by the noise emanating from everything he saw, taking in only snatches of conversation, fragmentary sentences like poetry concrete . When he fought sleep it felt like tiny explosions were going off in his body. The inside of his head began to itch & he could no longer find a comfortable position or stay still in his seat for more than a few seconds. Then the noise of an opening door, an actual sound from the real world, made him visibly jump, so magnified was the sound that he thought someone was drilling his head. He waited for a break in the discussion, turned to the face next to him & whispered. “Bit Tired”. Outside the streetlights hissed at him, a car waiting for him to cross the road chuckled & grinned.
At the cashpoint machine the tiny bleeps of the key pad became beautiful crafted platinum nails, each one driven into his scalp with surgical precision. Inside his car he locked the door, inserted the key & turned the engine over. The familiar sound of a DJ’s voice through static as the radio turned on was the first healing sound he’d heard in an hour & he sat in the dark rebuilding himself with it before engaging the gears & driving home.