Little fragments of glass were stuck in her flesh. Inside her organs, in her gullet, all over her body’s muscles, in her stomach, in her heart. They made her bleed copiously and the blood unceasingly flowed, painting her feeling’s surface a vibrant red. Hands were tightened in close fists, nails’ edges were white by the effort of pushing other splinters deeper and deeper into her skin. As on an oblique mirror, blood flowed and covered it with its intense colour, sliding on the ground. Everything was sliding away, even physical suffering. She didn’t feel any emotion. She observed the sluggish flowing of the red liquid out of her body in the same way a scientist would note a natural phenomenon. Despite this, she was feeling wonderfully better. The Evil stood no more inside her body, ferried on the floor towards death by that vermeil Charon. Better to lose that colour that mesmerises your glance as the flames of a fire lit in the darkness do, than to share life with that vicious everlasting destroyer.
Abruptly, a distant sound of a voice, low and muffled but still hearable. It was yelling as if it had a cotton pad over its mouth, “what are you doing??”. Now the arms that belonged to that voice were shaking her, male fingers were violently stroking her hair and lower and lower that saving sound was reaching her. But she didn’t want to be saved, for she alone had already arranged for it: she chased away the Evil from her body together with that red, the Evil that persecuted her, that made her feel an inhuman beast, that proded her at every day and night hour, leaving her wrecking in the sea of anguish. In that ocean there were no lifeboats or flares, only the certainty of being killed from the inside by the Evil and yet living, although her suffering.
Now the red that surrounded her had vanished. There was only white: dirt white, white of something torn by a continuous and repeated use, a tired white, sick of being there but resigned to the idea of having to stay there for a long time still. Thin transparent plastic cannulas full of that vivid red went out, or in, her arms. She tried to open her mouth but she realised that a blear colour mask was around it, steamy by her breath. She wanted to lift an arm, but any muscles did answer. In her idleness, panic burstingly infiltrated once again, in spite of the belief of having won over the Evil. Those familiar male arms had interrupted her beloved contemplation of that unique colour and her conviction of having eventually destroyed the Evil. She tried to turn her head, and she saw a woman dressed in that same weary white, her hands wrapped in transparent latex gloves, at her feet dusty drilled slippers, on her breast a tag with her name, a little black and white photo and a godforsaken writing, quoting “St James Psychiatric Hospital”. She saw the woman’s fire red lips moving and tried to focus on them, but what a difference with the vividness of blood colour! Of her blood! Other people came in, dressed in that same shabby uniform, and fussed around the cannulas and machinery. What a pain now, owning not that dazzling beautiful red, only way to get rid of sorrow! She didn’t want to give up its lack and uselessly searched for some kind of copy, a faded halo of its liveliness among all that bare white.
After some time the cannulas were removed and someone told her she could stand up and walk on her own feet, but she sensed that she couldn’t carry on just with the memory of that colour. Noboby now would have allowed her to heal, because the only possible cure was her blood, soaked with the Evil! Now, she knew, she would have been even more securely tied to the chair where the Evil used to make her suffer his terrifying abuses. Her life would have continued in the grip of his tortures, in her veins just brown and faded clots would have crept, leftovers of a more than a newborn rose’s bud intense red. Prisoner of the Evil, of her body, no way out.
Blood dried, and on the mirror of her feeling only a massive brown repulsive crust was left. Nothing she could have done to wash it away.
copyright 2007 Eleonora Pizzi