A tragedy strikes, maybe it was coming, but as one event triggers another, life suddenly stops making sense and we become someone else


Nothing New:

It was a warm night in December, celebrations started off early for the New Year. So Alex opened a beer, but looked sour using his teeth as a can opener. But his brother sitting next to him saw power. They sat there for about an hour. Killing time. But soon found entertainment when they heard their mama; start singing. They started dying from laughter. And Alex looked at Andrew and said through his smile, ‘look man that’s what happens when St James Infirmary starts playing’.

But mama’s singing was like a pigeon’s message not being delivered or an emergency call not being answered. Because Andrew started screaming, that just ran through everyone. But the sound was like a dying echo overpowered by the bang and screech that followed from that red Toyota. — Alex was still, his heart beat through his body, his head was shook but his eyes drew to Andrew, he coughed out the blood and struggled out, ‘sorry‘. He just lay there with a number of changing shades, all of which almost represented a loss of age and missed decades, he was turning so pale you could call him MJ. And all he wanted to be was an actor, but got left with a headshot for losing that Robert De Niro. That was worth a key and was the one thing preventing him from unlocking his dreams. So I guess he was still nobody even after somebody had killed him.

Still, Andrew saw clearly the grim deeds of sin as he held on to Alex’s hand, but couldn’t stand strong and fell on his brother’s lap. Mama ran outside asking what the commotion was, but as she saw Alex she just lost it, looking up and asking God, ‘why?‘ She knew he was gone but couldn’t stop herself from treating him. The rain followed her tears which were wiped away by Alex’s blood. She was doing whatever she could, refusing to pull the plug, and held Andrew close saying everything was OK, wishfully hoping Andrew didn’t know much. But Andrew knew all too much as Bill pulled up. He gripped to his mama; he was at a crossroads with how he should react. And he chose the route of revenge, turning the cross on his chest to his back as he left.

The next morning started dark because neither Andrew nor mama slept, they just wept sitting there watching Alex rest on the hospital bed. I guess neither of them could believe what had happened until Nurse Mary put a blanket over Alex’s head. But Mary talked to mama and told her — her story — of death and the fact that she lost her son and husband before she saw 30. Mama understood, but was cut too deep to make good of condolences. Mama just looked at the time and said, ‘Andrew go to school before you get late‘. But Andrew ended up on a bus to Bill’s place. Andrew was scared, but replaced that with rage as he knocked loud and fast on the door empowered by pain. Bill was calm however and opened the door with a smiling face. And said, ‘Hey man, and why is it with your presence I am graced‘. Andrew wasted no time, replying ‘look, whoever killed Alex has gotta die today’.

Bill wiped off his smile and kneeled down to Andrew calmly pointing towards his face. Andrew wasn’t interested in anything however but the instruction to get in the car and the words I’ll be out with an AK. But Bill shook Andrew out of yesterday and Andrew saw the tattoo which read faith. Something beautiful emanated across a destroyed face. Bill said, ‘focus on getting your mama a place and let karma deal with the people that killed your brother yesterday’. But that wasn’t the greatest advice as he handed Andrew an envelope with something heavy and instructions to go to the big house on fourth saying, ‘You can’t miss it; you look outside, there should be a green Chevy‘. He then gave Alex a fifty and some change followed by, ‘you work for me starting today‘.

Reword that and it’s Tyler taking advantage of unwanted slaves. Because Andrew gave the envelope and didn’t look back, the dissatisfied customer did something similar — pulling back on his strap. And this being the bad habit with unhappy customers was an unfortunate fact. Andrew fell on his knees and Bill was glad, he got rid of his debt and paid one back. Now all Andrew is remembered by is a T-shirt his friends wear, with his name across the chest. But the T-shirts should read Stevie Williams because all everybody else is going to remember is a Dirt Ghetto Kid rolled over by death.

With mama left moaning, her sadness turning into depression, overwhelmed by the painful reminder that life for her keeps going. Now she has no help with the bills, two gravestones without wills, a house with empty walls she’s forced to call home and neighbours who are a betting shop and alcoholics she’s forced to call on. When she needs sugar or a little help she’s left with life’s unfortunate hand, and was unlucky enough to have dealt. There’s no king or Uncle Jack there to help this black queen out of the struggle.

Now she’s forced to say ‘hit me’, constantly paranoid and full of envy. Looking in any direction to have her void filled. But we judge her as a fiend, not realising: two of her sons were killed.

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