Ferris: Supernova in my brian
Andre's mother looks slightly surprised when she opens the door to find me standing in the rain.
"Ferris, dear, I haven't seen you in ages," she says bluntly, "You looks absolutely drained."
I shift back and forth on my feet, not really meeting her eyes, and shrug.
She opens the door further and beckons me in, "Andre is upstairs in his room. Sylvia is over too."
Quite honestly, I don't really know Andre and Sylvia very well. We are just school buddies most of the time; occasionally we spend a day together out of school. It occurred to me last night that I enjoy their company. So I left my room for the first time in a week or so, and journeyed over for a visit.
I head up the narrow staircase, past the childhood pictures of Andre and his older brother Steven smiling widely. I pause and muse over one in particular of Steven and Andre running towards a sprinkler bare assed.
"We were young nudists." Andre says from the top of the stairs.
I glance up at him, then back at the picture, "For some reason, I don't find that hard to believe."
Andre grins and motions me up to the top floor. He is wearing one of those t-shirts with a tuxedo print on it, and large plaid pajama bottoms.
"Sylvia is here too. We bought an old type writer from Value Village today, and we're creating pages of bad poetry together."
Sylvia speaks just as we enter the room, "Blasphemy! My poetry is art!"
Andre rolls his eyes as we go through his door. I love Andre's room, he has large, bright pillows on his bed and floor, and Salvador Dali prints on his walls. It's crazy.
I sit down on a deep purple pillow and smile at Sylvia. She is sitting with her back against the bed, madly typing away at a rickety old typewriter, and cursing when she makes a mistake. I reach out and rub the brown stubble of her shaved head. She tears her eyes away from her poem, and quickly smirks at me.
Her expression turns to a frown, "Darling Ferris, I hate to say it, but you look terrible."
"No wings." Andre adds, "That's a definite sign of some change."
I shake my head and half smile. I turn and show them the back of my black t-shirt, which has angel wings silk-screened on it.
"It's still not the same," Andre points out, "But, whatever, if there is anything you just need to speak of randomly, go ahead. At anytime."
"Surprise us," Sylvia mutters, starting to type madly again, "Shock us."
I feel better in their company, comforted by the humorous way they view things. There is no obligation on my part to speak of what's going on. And Andre and Sylvia hold no expectation of me to rely on them for help.
I relax back into the warmth of the room, the energetic ska music blaring, and the clicking of Sylvia's typing. Andre tosses me his sketchbook. I love looking through it not just because of Andre's amazing skill, but also because it is a reflection of his life. Each sublime image is an account of what he's been doing each day. It is his way of telling me that both Sylvia and him are okay.
I point at one page full of comical drawings of people in a coffee shop, "This is awesome."
Andre peeks over at the page, "Ah yes, we sat for a long time guzzling lattes and sketching the odd ones."
Sylvia jumps in the conversation again, "We went to a party that night. The theme was the seven deadly sins. They had Greed dancing around on stilts with money falling out of his pockets."
"And Pride was wearing peacock feathers." Andre took back his book and slid it onto his bedside table, among the stacks of novels he kept there.
"Amazing." I reply simply, because it is.
Syliva pulls the page out of the type writer and clears her throat dramatically, "Super nova in my brain. A poem by Sylvia."
Andre makes cheering noises and Sylvia strikes a wistful pose, raising her hand tentatively upwards as she continues,
"Oh - the flowers
on a sweet september day!
yellow like those dinosaur bones
we saw in the museum
and laughed at creationism
dumb fucks and their disdain for evolution
but science has ruined by imagination
I wish for starving artist (ism)
torturing my soul for a living
a bit of self mockery
a bit of self pity
a lot of alcoholism
you hands on my throat yelling
therapy balance that damn serotonin
my neurotransmitters are electric hyper sonic
I will shock you with my genius.
It's only a small speech impediment
I mean, you could really feel his pain
anguish at the ancient artefacts stored away behind glass and security
those dinosaurs restored to their former glory
stripped of their scales skin organs
lord smite me why don't you
(didn't think so)
I believe in jupiter saturn venus
solar system salvation
the sun is swelling our skin is burning blistering peeling
I did nothing
left the air conditioning
stepping out the doors onto the concrete
looked up waiting for something to burst
explode and rain down
I ended up taking bus 28 home."
Sylvia lowers her paper in satisfaction, "You are stunned by my brilliance."
"Definitely." Andre says, "With out a doubt, the most beautiful work of poetry I've ever read. Better than Ginsberg."
I open my mouth to say 'they should teach that in English class'. But instead I end up saying, "I tried to hurt myself really bad the other week."
Andre and Sylvia both look at me, "Oh? And why would you want to do that?"
I shrug and fiddle with the edge of the purple pillow, "It seemed like a really good idea at the time."
Sylvia laughs quietly, "I think we all have moments like that, sweet'ums."
"I guess so," I answer, "I mean, it was good. I realized a lot, like what I wasn't doing well. The hard drugs weren't helping. Hell, even the damned antidepressants weren't doing anything. So I'm taking time to figure it all out, you know, like painting again and writing down all my thoughts."
"Clarity is good." Andre says.
"You do seem different," Sylvia leans forward, "In the way that you seem to be more sure of yourself."
I burst out laughing, "I have no fucking clue what I'm doing."
Next thing I know I have a typewriter with a fresh piece of paper being forced at me.
"Hey doll, write about it." Andre grins, "Either seriously, or in the worst emotional angst sap monologue you can think of."
The return of the illusive Andre and Sylvia. Love them.