As he lay on the floor with yet another neat little soldier of death burning slowly between his fingers, he wondered if he could have done it all a little different. The whiskey clad breath emancipating from his nostrils heaved another sigh, and the man in the mirror on the other side of the room hung his head in shame. Such promise, such talent. All going down the drain. He used to be a poet, had in grasp a semi-decent hand at the guitar, a mind that could have gone places if not haunted by its own demons. A life that could have moved in a direction so different, a love that he had in his grasp albeit for a fleeting second.

He had never been a hard-worker, and, you know, that was just fine. His passions used to pump him up, and when he took upon a project, the only thing he could see in the complete spectrum was what he wanted to do, and he stayed on with it till he ran it to completion. If you go read his earlier pieces, you’d know what is being talking about here! His only driving force was the fire that was within, be it writing a new story or coming up with lyrics for a new song, perfecting that one kick when he played football, winning someone over. And people around him saw it, the light that radiated from within, the smile that sometime lay plastered on his face. And it made them happy, to be with him, to be around. As he tried to push his sorry ass off the floor, all he could think of was that fire, and whatever transpired that extinguished what remained of it, leaving him hollow. Was it because of it that they all left? Or did the fire die when they did?

He had always been haunted by voices inside his head. He had pushed them deep into a vortex where they could not touch him anymore, but that, that was before. That was when he could distract himself with everything going around, but being alone, they slowly broke away. And he could not help but listen to them. They were coming from his head, they were real! And they took him to her. Talked about her, dug up a beautiful memory and place it in front of his eyes and make him fall far far away to a world that was nothing but her. It revolved around her smile, and the walls were painted with their love. Far across, there was her, and in between, the memories they made together. To go to her, he would carefully swim into each of them, and just as he thought he’d made it, just as he dared to touch her, the walls crumbled down and he woke up in a jolt of reality.

As he looked across of what remained of the man in the mirror, he wondered for how long could he keep trusting the voice inside? For how long could he hide himself in the pretext of the life that passed him by? Hang his head in shame after whenever the voice asked him to put his hands inside his pants and give a little yank in the middle of the night, or have another glass of spirits when he knows that the night has been done before a long long time. Then another, and another. And again, he was back, wanting to touch her, feel her, caress her. Indulge in sloppy kisses, place a hand on inside of her thighs as he prepared to go inside. “No wait, wait, NO! stop! STOP!”, he screamed at his head to not go there for once as tears streamed out of his eyes again.

Will it ever stop? Will he ever be home when he is alone? Will he ever find his peace or it’ll be yet another sad case of a bright light gone ashtray? If at all, for him, will it ever cease to hurt? Will the demons go away? Will the fire come back? Can he smile again?

Shine on, you crazy diamond.