You know consider, if you will, two important dates. The date of your birth and the date that you die. Imagine this, one of the dates is left behind while the other, with every passing day, comes a little closer.
The Woman Upstairs
Along a winding road that does traverse hill and dale, rising and falling across the byway is a place, a place where the road stops.
A journey burdened with grey clouds and a winter’s mood that draws in the cold and banishes one to a place of isolation.
For at the end of this road is a house whose face is somewhat crumbled and etched with cracks. The four windows, far from clear and the front door, within the middle, has slipped a little.
Upstairs, in one of the three empty bedrooms, a woman stands facing the door her back against the wall. She waits. A faraway look in her eyes and she stands consumed in the moment, a moment of life reflections.
Downstairs there is a man, young, but not in looks, who seeks solace from the bottle that no longer lifts him from the gutter. He is sprawled on the punch drunk sofa all battered and bruised sleeping off a hangover.
There is another figure outside the house. He waits, hidden, clothed in the shadows. For he has come to visit the woman upstairs and meet with her again at this house at the end of a long and winding road.
The other man inside the house is lost to sleep and does not hear the visitor pass by and climb the steep and creaking staircase.
The woman smiles when she sees the familiar figure framed in the doorway and beckons him forward to enter the room. She steps away from the wall as he raises his arms to draw her near. They embrace and linger does the kiss one more time.
Downstairs, a sleeping man, exhales his last breath.
Upstairs the rooms are empty, forlorn, deserted of life.
Death has taken Life away, away from the house at the end of the road.
story by John Riley
artwork by analogicus