Phlegm

Summer has departed like a travelling carnival careening from one two-horse-town to another. Strewn across the streets are the crumpled paper garlands and the fading gaiety of our sun induced hilarity. Night has less patience and encloses the day in its velvet fist, squeezing us in so very tightly. I am noticing the first smells of the winter. The sharpened morning air is edged with a pertinacious undercurrent of Wet Coats, Unwashed Hair, Moth Balls and Cough Syrup. There are awkward bulges in heavy coats and fumbling fingers are busily exploring the moist interiors of over-stuffed pockets. Hand rails are ominously sticky. Cold sweat is trickling, slicking sickly pale brows. Despite the Changes, a few deranged or optimistic individuals will flip flop about in scanty footwear, as though trying to woo back the tattered ends of the summer. Their fake tans will fool no one. The rest of us are becoming enveloped in fat and felt, buffered against chills and cold stares. Clearly lacking an inner monologue, there will be some bastard who takes it upon himself to make irritatingly obvious remarks on the ambient temperature.

I can hear your laborious breathing through your blocked nose hovering hideously close to my ear. I am contemplating your Insides. Your wheezing and congested cough hints at the cavernous interior encaged by your ribs; it is only a thin layer of flesh and bone that protects me from the tennis court sized phenomena of your breathing apparatus. The skin thats draped around you is more aware of your surroundings than you are, colouring and flaking in a war with the air, bristling and prickling in defence against the chill. There are vast, gelatinous continents within you, criss crossed by a sprawling maze of road works and ingenious intersections.