I\’m jus\’ sayin\’

August 2, 2007

Shouldn’t you be sleeping?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Bwandungi @ 4:44 am

It’s semi dark in this room. A little light filters in through the holes in the blinds on my window. I’ve always wondered why people who want to cause others harm were afraid of the light. Is it the element of surprise? Maybe.

Darkness seems more scary after a movie that focuses on the degenerate nature of twisted human beings. There have been quite a few. They’ve followed unsuspecting women for months, even years and studied their habits. Once the need to kill cannot be suppressed, they take their chance!

However, tonight is one of those nights when the fear of darkness is as rational as poking my eye out with my finger. Science teaches me that in the absence of light darkness must exist. It is just a state of being. There is no in-between place. Either it is dark or there is light. It looks more velvety in my room though. Like it’s flowing about the place in the manner of a dark shadowy ghost. Not the kind that shriek in your ear every time you turn away from them, but more like the kind that will come sit by you and tell you a story of days gone by when all this was inhabited by people who lived close to the earth and had names like Broken Branch, or Strong Toes. I like this kind of darkness.

I remember being in at my grandparent’s house in a small rural town where the night sky was dark enough to see each individual star brilliantly displayed. Like diamonds strewn carelessly about on a velvety cloth. God definitely knew what he was doing! The moon was about as much light as we wanted in order to see the stars and the absence of artificial light made the entire presentation very dramatic. Each star twinkled to it’s own internal beat and I would imagine they were winking at me, daring me to live past the thin layer of breathable air on the surface of the earth, and reach out to discover the secrets they were itching to tell me.

My grandparents house did not have glass windows. Instead the narrow openings were closed using wooden shutters. They were not air tight, but they were strong enough to deter thieves and critters from entering the house. At night the shutters were closed and their house became very dark. As we sat around eating dinner or talking, I would stare at the walls enraptured by the sudden movements of the shadows cast by my family gesturing as they spoke. My Mom’s head would be sharp at one angle and quite oblong when she would turn to speak to someone else. When my grandfather leaned forward to rest his elbows on his knees and held his Bible in his hands, it seemed like the book became a part of him. Rather than a man holding a book, a strange face would appear just where the book was, creating another alien. As Obloong and his baby brother Bookertoo spoke in strange gurgly language that I couldn’t quite make out, rafters of the roof would distort their shapes and gestures making it impossible to read their body language. Slowly but surely, the thick smell of burning wick and kerosene (which irritated me so) would fade and I’d make up stories in my mind about these weird visitors from outer space.

Darkness. Light. Umbra. Penumbra. Darkness. Light. Zzzzzzzzzz….



August 1, 2007


Filed under: Uncategorized — Bwandungi @ 3:35 am

I close my eyes , hold my breath and count to ten. Slowly I exhale as my mind visualizes the arabic representations of the numbers so familiar to my brain.


RATS! I can’t get through six! I can never get through six! Mostly because the fear of suffocation survives in each cell that makes up the parts of my body. The traumatic event that is recalled every time I feel I’m unable to draw breath does not inhabit any brain cells that I use on a regular basis. I doubt it really exists BUT pretending that it does gives the illusion that I’m really more interesting and complex.

In the darkness that my eyelids provide, I return to controlling my breath.

Inhale… 1… 2… 3… 4…

Are my lungs collapsing?! I touch my chest and cock my head to the side and take a couple of deep breaths and listen for the telltale signs of asthma. I’m sure I’ve got it! What is that sound? Was that a… ? I cough a little to dislodge some phlegm caught in my throat and the sound disappears. Phew! That was a close one!!!

I still cannot seem to draw a big enough breath to calm my brain down. Even though I know it is my brain influenced by my imagined traumatic event, I can’t seem to control the places my imagination takes me. Maybe my breaths will become shallower still until all the red blood cells in my body are completely drained of any trace of oxygen, my lips will turn blue…

The thick wet molecules of air surround me. Laying heavily in the air they obstruct the flow of clean cool air I’m desperately trying to suck into my nostrils. I feel slightly light headed from my feeble attempts at breath control and my near brushes with scary breathing problems like asthma.

I tried. I really did!  Turn on the damned air!!!!! This is Houston.

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