100 Trains of Thought: 5. Ed


Words and Image by Billie Jenkins

He often thought the world could be divided into two types of person: the kind that would look away from the scene of an accident to mark their respect for the human griefs that glimpsed though bent metal bathed in blue light, and the kind that would sneak a look, or stare shamelessly as lives were violently changed. He firmly belonged in the first group, or so he thought. He got the news his brother had died on the A17 in September as the leaves browned on the trees. He remembered this vividly,  he had taken a long walk through his childhood town, where his family had gathered, and cried, and gone into deep, drained sleeps. The leaves on the ground trustling in the crisp Autumn air were the only sound outside of his own footsteps. During this walk he had thought of his brother, of their childhood, of how his mother would recover the death of her first son. He concentrated on his breathing, and on how cold the air felt in his lungs, much colder than on his skin. There was a strange connection in his mind between the crunched metal car and the tough square of a molar tooth. He had had one removed when he was fifteen and the noise haunted him, the brittle scraping and wrangling of hard body away from body. This violent, physical intrusion was what he felt when he pictured the crashed car, which compulsively flashed though his mind. Just over a year later he drove past an accident on a similar road, and drunk in its images until the police chaperone waved him by.




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