Uploaded by Brian Carter


March 7, 2006
Tonight I understood suicide as an act of instinctual exhilaration. The cold air rushed through my
clothes but I was insulated, warm and strangely at peace, the way you can be when something
terrible is happening to you but you're too tired or strung out to react.
The twin beacons of the 1:22am MetroNorth to New Haven thrust at me out of the fog, filling the
dark crisp night, and I felt a cinematic connection to the moment, a vision of an acceptance, of
involvement in an ultimate moment of choice; a declaration of certainty that I had meant all those
things I'd said, that yes, even the lies had substance, my substance. My writing, no, the writing was
shit- my thinking was exceptional, and must be broadcast; and just this awareness was comforting,
that I could signal my self-authority so completely, whenever I chose. The incoming train bore down
on me, and I understood my cousin, for one, as I had not before.
I had missed the 12:22, the last train leaving 125th St, that would take me home. It had been
luxurious, knowing that my mind would be occupied on the trip, industriously figuring my life,
figuring life...
Instead, i remembered my daughter still had my bank card, the Paypal one, the one with enough
balance for a cab from Stamford to New Canaan.
The callous hackjob of what had the makings of a championship Oscars celebration (was Tom
Hanks muttering mad? Did Nicholson skewer the money just in the way he said '...producers'? Has
anyone ever so upstaged so remarkable a list of motion pictures simply in the listing of them?),
hadn't dimmed my resolve tonight; not until it kept me from making the 12:22.
H. was with her mom tonight, in New Canaan, my card in her black zippered wallet; so proud I was
of that; and yet it might as well have been with those bears I'd been reading about, their footsteps
leaping toward the seal-hole and disappearing, just disappearing- no shoreline, no fissures, no
tracks to be seen anywhere else on the ice, for miles. And nowhere near enough cash for a taxi.
I board the train, zombie-like, still holding my breath. The conductor appears, takes my ticket.
"Change in Stamford for New Canaan" he says, easing the seat check into a vinyl seam. I fear
that some cruel forgetfulness has touched him.
"There's a connection?" I prayed aloud.
"Yes, change in Stamford" he repeats, moving on.
"It is Sunday night, isn't it? I call after him. I had removed my glasses to study the schedule's fine
print in the lobby, perhaps to escape the lens of bad luck through which I was viewing, increasingly
resigned. Resignation + rage is a depressing combination.
"They just added another train" he dropped back at me, unaware, no, just aware somewhere else. I
didn't care. I had the world back, and I just had to commit his matter-of-fact sentence to heart
before the drum beat in my ears rose and drowned him out.