Shane Jesse Christmass

Michael having a quick nap in the back room of the apartment. Outside there is only traffic chaos. Airline tickets on the kitchen table ... the breakfast nook. I walk to the convenience store. Michael is overweight ... he smells. A glassy freshness of odour ... of shit. His shaky voice booms for once. His hand ruffles through the container of catalepsy drugs His hair has dark patches. Michael wakes up with a pounding headache. His face is burning. Someone has torn an artery. Blood on his black teeth. Ozone and dust. Silvery-black metal and strange bluish lights ... concrete ... the tremendous exhaust of a truck. Grey shit throughout Houston ... Haverstock Hill Apartments. An electric cord around Michael’s neck. Alcohol in the shape of smooth baubles. The smoke inside my nostrils is wicked. It is hard to concentrate on my own breathing. Michael walks to his car ... he smiles ... and he says he's ok. He asks me if I am ok. I tell him no. The next day. The next morning. Michael wakes up with a pounding headache. He finds his face is not burning. I can smell all the infinite passion that is inside Michael ... his mind bereft of opulent warmth ... the bed sheets. I am inside the apartment building. I think that I have the same level of engagement with the population as I have always had. I know that some people need a certain sort of pain in their hearts to go in for painkillers. It is one of those weeks where I want to lie in bed and dream ... but my head feels like a cold ... heavy metal box. Michael's house is quiet and still and cold. He does not leave. No one is there. He opens the door ... it is dark ... he is still in bed. He sits on the ground ... there is a big bag of money. Nothing. He takes the big plastic bag of money and puts it on the ground. My arms wrap around him. I am frozen. A cold ... heavy metal coffin. Michael in the backroom. Michael ... eyes closed and sleeping. He's out his window. Out there with the rest of the animals ... his breathing is as regular as the rest of the world. A moment I am in the apartment. Then it's gone. Michael's body is buried ... his legs are spread out over the floor. His face is pale from the drug intoxication ... but not too far. He is still sitting at the table ... smoking. It is a lonely weekend in New Orleans. Michael's house is a white ... modern ... comfortable one. Everything is new. There is no heat ... heat is not the same as it is in Houston. People drive their cars home from the beach ... I am in a Honda ... watching the river. I am in New Orleans. I'm on the floor. My ass is soaked in piss ... and I am naked. My hands are wet. My head hurts. My legs are sticky. I'm thinking. My eyes are closed ... but the light behind them fills my skull. I have no sense of time. The pain runs down my spine ... the pain makes me scream. My body twists around ... the weight of the room tilts at the seams. Dark patches of white glare. The electric lamp ... telepathic messages. Salt water ... liquor ... bulletproof clothes. Sweat leaks into my lungs. I’m in Room 3C. A steady breeze throughout Houston. I’m wearing a thin blue suit ... holding a tiny pistol. The toilet cubicle at the train station. The gas stations ... indescribable horror inside the emergency rooms ... Michael has an unshaven chin. Mechanical toys inside a sports bag. Vertical sleet ... sleep state ... parasympathetic activity ... rough analogues ... visual scenes. Corpse paint n Michael’s face. A yellow sun in a distant country. A white wave of electric lights. Metallic chairs on the house patio. A mechanical skull inside an old house. Breath catches beneath lurid fluorescent lights ... the convenience store. Sexual partners inside an obscure tunnel. Buckets ... mops ... brooms ... bins ... wipes ... hand towels ... detergents ... waxes ... polishes ... plastic gloves ... squeegees. Pools of water. The bathroom ... a shower ... the bathroom room. In a closet ... an empty washroom. No phone. No laptop. The bathroom. Air conditioning.

Shane Jesse Christmass is the author of the novels, Xerox Over Manhattan (Apocalypse Party, 2019), Belfie Hell (Inside The Castle, 2018), Yeezus In Furs (Dostoyevsky Wannabe, 2018), Napalm Recipe: Volume One (Dostoyevsky Wannabe, 2017), Police Force As A Corrupt Breeze (Dostoyevsky Wannabe, 2016) and Acid Shottas (The Ledatape Organisation, 2014).

He was a member of the band Mattress Grave and is currently a member in Snake Milker.

An archive of his writing/artwork/music/social media can be found at: https://linktr.ee/sjxsjc