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I look, confused at the wall clock. It keeps ticking, keeps ticking my life away, and with the minutes it burns ideas, worlds, dreams. The bad, thankfully, goes with the good and I repeat to myself, you can't break even.

The last evening of my life was beautiful and thirsty and confusing all at once. Hard to pick out that last moment from among my memories. Whether it was me staring at her, me, falling to the floor, me trying to be dramatic, when the only real drama in my life was death.

It was a great morning. A morning of coffee and golden silences. In the details there were still those little lines between the wooden planks in the floor, but I still looked at it as one entity. The floor, my floor. My ownership smothered the floor, more than my dirty clothes, hanging out of the hamper. I was confused. I woke up in familar clothes and familiar surroundings, but everything was different. Maybe it was a humming in the door...saying my death was impending, but I knew this day meant more than being sad over my lack of syrup in the fridge.

More than being sad over my last sip of coffee. In fact, I was exuberant. Clothed and ready, I stepped out onto my street on my way to my store, my sucking, seething store which I liked to call my baby at parties to mix up people who knew I didn't have a girlfriend.

Being exhausted over the idea, the wonderful concept of owning something, today I was not exhausted, today I didn't give attention to my lonely self, in fact I was the furthest thing from my mind.

I always practiced believing impossible things, and the impossible thing that day was being happy, genuinely happy. And I found myself smiling and humming, and losing my silly self. Finding myself silly was almost frightening. The birds were chirping and the sun shining.

I passed my neighbor watering the lawn. And she was beautiful. And it wasn't her clothes, baggy t-shirt and jeans, but her expression of "oh god, I hate this lawn" spoke to me, as being poignant and different, sad.

And though my blue skies were like my smooth pancake batter, I needed a cloud to mar my day, or perhaps I would go floating off, unanchored.

So I went up to her and bent down on one knee and asked her to marry me, with water splashing in my face.

She dropped the hose and opened her mouth in an o. Facing her enemy, me, wet and shining, then she set her hand in my upturned one.

She pulled me up and we walked down the sidewalk together, like two opposites, like parallel lines. We were walking to my store. I couldn't find an excuse to go a different way.

And then he killed me. In the store. And I couldn't find words, because the one who was going to marry me was looking not sad but out of her depth. and leaning forward with her perfect hands, like she was going to take a dive into my soul. Which was slowly slipping away, if you believe in a soul.

He shot me and then said he was sorry, he didn't break even this month and I forgave him. With the blood dripping out of me, I gave him my spirit to hold so next time he wouldn't pull the trigger. I didn't want to remember the moment, but to remember the coffee grounds like Argentina, and the sweetness of powdered sugar on the pancakes. How I couldn't remember feeling that way ever before. And the sun shining on the hair of my bride. That was the way I died...yesterday.

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