My name is Tired. I had another name, I think, but I forgot it a long time ago. My heart is a she. Her name is Torn. She used to speak to me, just little whispers throughout the day that turned dull moments into dazzling ones. Hard choices into easy decisions. She once stopped me from…well, that’s not important right now. She hasn’t said anything in a while. A long while, actually. I feel lonely without her. I used to think she was dead. A still corpse decaying in a once loved place. But her friend, Lost, told me she was still alive. She just had nothing to say.
I miss Lost too. He’s a soul. He used to shimmer like a starry night, glimpsed from beneath crystal clear waves. He’s grey now. But he prefers we say he is ‘gunmetal pearl’ – E.L. James stole the colour grey and made it vulgar. Or so he says. He’s a fickle one, Lost. But at least he’ll survive us all. Give him time to find where he’s supposed to be.
Broken, a mutual friend to us both, apologises a lot. It’s his fault that Lost can’t find his way. He broke. Shattered. Splintered at first, yes, but gave out not long after. A billion pieces of razor sharp dreams all just waiting to slice and tear at anything that comes near them. Bitter little fucks. Sometimes I grab them. Just for a second. To keep myself awake.
I’m a landlord of sorts. I have tenants that I never see because they never pay me. Sure they keep the building – me – ticking by. Clean my blood. Dispose of my rubbish. Strip away all the nutrients I need from whatever morsel I pass between my lips, just to keep this hunk of junk I call a body moving. Sometimes I wish they’d move out. Go to good homes. Lead good, full lives somewhere happier. Somewhere warmer and bright and filled with sunshine so thick you could take a glass to it and gulp it down like fresh squeezed OJ. But they won’t. They’re happy where they are and refuse to leave. No one can say I didn’t warn them.
I have a friend called Silver. He has a black handle and sharp wit. He makes me laugh. He makes me cry. He makes me feel remorse reserved only for Meryl Streep in another stunning role. He takes the drudgery of hardship and gives me little badges to remind myself how far I’ve come. He’s not bad. Not good. But he makes me feel. I’m not allowed to talk to Silver.
I have an escape. She’s called Writing. I don’t like her sometimes. She doesn’t like me too, I think. Then she does. Then she doesn’t. She makes me beautiful and I make her real. She needs me. I need her. We need each other. But. But what? She’s all I have now Silver isn’t here, the only thing to remind me of Torn and to not chase after Lost. Writing is all I have left to sooth the wounds Broken leaves on me. Writing is something different than a friend, much more than a parent and infinitely more valuable, yet more fickle, than both. Writing is…
I can’t finish that sentence. She’s not here to help me write now.
My name is Tired and all I want to do is sleep. But if I do I’ll never see her again. I’ll never feel her on my fingers or see her dance in a garden of pristine snow that her footprints make greater simply by being there. How amazing is that? Just by walking across a field of unbroken white, she makes it grander, more elaborate and closer to perfection than it could have ever done on its own. She’s everything. Her steps change the world. She’s the reason I’m still awake. The reason I might always be Tired and maybe, if Broken can be fixed and Torn healed and Silver banished forever, I might not always be Tired. She might give me a new name. She might help me find Lost and give him colour again. Bring back his sparkle. Become whatever it is he’s supposed to be.
So Writing, if you’re out there and you can read this, please, please come home to me. Please come back and let’s take this journey together. Step by step.