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BY: Jabram Raven Allen
February 25, 2013

In the midnight hour amidst my apartment's withering flowers, my stereo sang. Physically, hideously out of date, it sat faithfully within my rooms moldy silence blurting out hymns of blasphemous New Age choirs; all this it did as I sat at a small glass table covered with simple white cloth bemoaning my fate upon this wretched orb. I sat in mortal darkness silently, cursing life; only my fear of hell kept me from reaching for that I most desired – a swift and sudden death. While heaving in unwanted breaths, my salt rimmed eyes caught a glimpse of a spirited shadow that appeared swiftly above my fireplace, a dancing Rorschach whose twin ruby embers plunged through my self induced cannabis, pinot fog piercing deeply into my battered brain. Of what horrid shapes its confusing blots presented my weary soul in its fevered state I dare not say; especially not of that fearful image through which it showed me its disdain for all who fell within its domain. 

Possessed of stately standing; the croaking shadow's haggard quaws tugged hastily and rudely upon my cringing ears as its frozen echoes slashed madly through my turbulent brain's fleshy halls.  
A wretched blot of ink, it perched arrogantly upon a shadowed crucifix, "shadows casted upon my stifling walls, a trick of moonlight and frosted window panes" I shouted within myself. Clinging tightly to my drug induced fog, like a frightened child in a dark and empty room clings to their favorite toy, I pray desperately that some compassionate adult would burst upon the scene proclaiming that all is alright, and all that I have seen is nothing more than a trick of shadow and light.  

Quawking, croaking, clicking the hidden lyrics to those infernal hymns continued blurting from my decaying stereo which I believed summed up and summoned its damned existence into my cheap 6th street domain. Rustled and rustling the noisy silence of its inky presence shattered the loud brooding sadness of my domicile's decrepit being. Stretching outward, slicing through a flickering snap of melting wax; its rippling shadow rested challengingly upon my table cloth. Nothing more than a flickering shadow amidst whispering walls, my candle sputtered into my disbelieving ears. It was in darkness I sat and in darkness I mourned the birth of my spirit upon this mortal plane as I attempted to determine the truth of its existence. Tell me ancient spirit of ink and woe, I teased as I attempted to summon what was left of my courage, what fiend awaits me beyond this earthly hell, what will torment me in that place of misery and pain, what shame awaits me that I do not already know? Silently, it stared upon me. The airy violence of its heart shrinking croak cracked what was left of my dwindling sanity. 

Dropping from the shadowed crucifix, it transformed from misshapen orb into beak, wing and fluttering limbs. Swiftly it was upon me in my darkened room, as it transformed back and forth from one creature to another, its flashing fangs penetrating my glistening veins. Excited posture, staggering gait; slamming backwards onto a stench laden floor I lay prone and still as the creature sat upon my heaving chest. It had violently given me what I most desired, but within that gift I knew there would be no rest. The sputtering wick of a melting shadow signified the sudden stillness of my fluttering limbs. Once perched upon me, its scaled talons sunk firmly into my rigid arms; a perverse human

crucifix. Within my blood that rest firmly upon my wooden floor, there is the rippling reflection of flaming gates, about my domicile there are fluttering shadows and fleeting shades, yet despite all this my faithful stereo still sang as it sat amidst my apartment's withering flowers. 


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