On Characters Lifted from a Book

9:00 AM

My mind is not the place to be right now so… I’m going to read that book, The Stranger.

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The jeepney driver, who was seated next to me in the left, is engaged in a banter with a passenger at the back seat. They’re squabbling over the “real” fare for the Apas-Ramos route. My senses snap at their exchange, then back to you, Camus. As my eyes prod to read the next paragraphs, I cant help but second-think: did the banter over the nine-peso fare really occurred? Because their voices seemed to belong to the pages you filled.

They were men and strangers, too.

unnamed verse #5

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There’s a sudden fancy growing on me

a need to follow the dotted line in this flat, flat world

my feet must skip spaces and depths

to stand near your bedroom door and steal…

… glances that you could only give to your missing sock or fav’rite shirt

… whispers that drive words out of strange thoughts

… moments of solitude that you so crave when I

Am here.

Right here.