Thorazine Helps

January 31, 2012


She had pulled the back of her gray cable-knit sweater up and over the top of her head like a hood, a peculiar positioning that lifted her arms up to her sides like a scarecrow gone half limp. She entered the cafeteria sashaying in this unusual fashion and then stopped, as if impeded from going further by an unseen force. Her skin was mashed potato pale, and her eyes were like the black mouths of caves carved into her angular face. She didn’t sleep much, he said. She was up wandering the halls each night; mumbling, walking, mumbling, walking, then stopping like she did just now, for no apparent reason. Frozen in her restlessness.

Once, when he got up in the morning, she was outside his opened door, her sweater still atop her head, eyeing his scrambled eggs like a predator ready to pounce upon anxious flesh. He hurriedly ate his eggs, not knowing if this action would avoid a confrontation or create one.

She frequently watched the BBC and occasionally a fragment of laughter would leak from her lips, although her face never revealed a hint of pleasure. Laughter is in the curve and light of the eyes, he said; and hers had neither. They were lightless, loveless.

But Thorazine helps.

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