Shevek (shevek) wrote,

Back under the yellow night skies of my childhood, I find it hard to remember that the stars were ever infinite. The brown glow rises like a disease from the horizon. Only directly overhead is there a patch of dark blue where half a dozen determined stars poke tiny holes through the murk. I count the stars, as I did when I was a child, being careful not to include any errant aeroplanes. Aeroplanes were my stars, growing up under the Heathrow flight path where there is no milky way. They look the same but move faster. The whole world is burning, it has all gone to hell, except for this tiny place where I stand with the dark blue overhead.

The noise is ever-present, here. The hiss and roar of the city is an unidentifiable, averaged noise. Each sound is subdued by a gang of others, who ensure that none may stand out from the crowd, barely even the train which sometimes rattles along the nearby tracks. I close my window to shut the noise out like an unwelcome guest. The silence is sudden with the thump of the window latch - but momentary - as smaller sounds sneak through the cracks and fill the space with their hiss.

I can almost imagine I am human, here, with my windows closed and my duvet over my head, creating the silence which can never be heard and imagining the stars I cannot see.

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