There's a ripped paper-piece with an unreadable poem written on it nailed to the wall. It's hung too low for most to see, almost where one's ankles are, and it blows up with the wind when he passes it by, tickling his skin if he happens to be walking too close. He hung that poem up a cloudy afternoon when the skies were aching to rain. He hung it up for the rain to come, drop in through the cracks in the old ceiling and slide down the pale green wall where the chalk has blown up in ugly circles and the paint is falling off. It's the wall opposite from his bed, the only place where the rain slides down. There are yellow crates contrasting against the white on the ceiling, and if he lays down on the floor with his head just touching the lower edge of the paper-piece, water drops will fall into his mouth and he can put his feet on the bed. The bed is always untidy, and the sheets smell of moisture, and the sweet scent of dry sweat. If he sits on it, he can pretend that the paper-piece is a television and that the smudged out letters on it are...he doesn't know what they are. He doesn't know why he has hung that poem up to be destroyed so cruelly. He can't read it but he knows who has written it even though he can't distinguish the letter on the lower right corner. He rolls under the bed and pulls out a pair of jeans, the dust making him cough. It's hard to stand up so he puts them on while he's still lying down and concentrating on the water dropping down from the cracks in the ceiling. Lifting his back, up the jeans go, and he sits up with great difficulty, feeling his head spin. He runs his fingers through his too long hazel hair, his graceful features hardening as he feels the grease. Everything goes black before his eyes for a second and then there's the old books in a pile in front of him, just under the window. He once built them up to the roof, but the water made the ones at the top mold since it was still winter. And in winter it rained, it rained until the sky went red around its eyes.
His chest is moist; he doesn't like to wear clothes when his body is moist, but it wont ever dry in this room, so he puts his knitted parka on anyway. It's green and brown in thin stripes and lets in too much of the cold winter squalls.
It's a good day to die, but if it's good enough to die, it's also good enough to live, he thinks, and feels all philosophical. He can't read his books or the poem on the wall, not because the letters have smudged out that much, but because they get smudged out in his mind, and because he sees everything blurry through those moss-green eyes. If he could, he is sure that he would know more of philosophy or dying. But he didn't know anything about dying other than that people died. But since any day was good enough to die, it was also good enough to live. He decided he would live forever.
Now it wasn't time for that though, now it was time to go out into the loneliness of the New York jungle, cross all those wet streets and get to the model agency.