Outside in the darkened streets somebody is shouting at the top of their voice. They’re assisted by something, as they haven’t stopped for about half an hour. Drugs? Booze? Love? “I love you!!” That’s been part of it. Their voice is a high tenor. A young voice. They might lose a few notes from the top of their range tonight at this rate. It’s all on one note, the noise they’re making. Both musically and sentimentally. They honestly might be going “nah nah nah nah nah”. Our brain can shut it out easily enough when it is so monotonal. What does he think he will achieve? Did anyone really ever change anybody’s mind by shouting at them? And yet, people try and try and try. I opened the window and stuck my head out to try to make sense of the words. He’s close. He’s not coherent enough. All the vowels are bleeding. I only made out “I love you” when it repeated four times with a little dying fall on the fourth as his breath ran out. Pitiful. But I wish he’d shut up. I thought about suggesting it, but I have a feeling that the rage-serenade would turn towards my windows instead. I can’t see him through the tree, but he’s over there somewhere.

I’m pretty much packed. This is my last night in London. Good of the city to help me remember why it’s good to get out. London gave me a headache and shat all over my car. I think we had a spot of acid rain the day before yesterday when I had my headache. Whatever it was, I washed it off Bergman today.

Moss is in my bed. He’s the measured teetotal son of a friend of Lou’s and he’s working at The Opera House. I’m on the sofa. I think I’m packed, even though I’m packing very very light. And I’m exhausted.

Shoutyman is still shouting. I’m thinking back to when that was me. I remember shouting at a nightbus driver who shot by me at 2am without stopping, and then he hit lights just past the stop. “Why didn’t you open the door! I hope you rot in hell!” All that stuff. Thinking about it it does feel nice to get that shit out in the open. ‘nah nah nah nah nah” he says, and the target turns up the music and all the rest of us wish he’d fade into the background, but that little sad lad with his only-just-broken voice – he might find catharsis in his repetitive squealing. We can only hope.

The fish tank is in my room, and it’s piling out irregular noise through the filter. That’s gonna be my company as I sleep. It’ll partly drown out shoutyman, who will surely run out of steam before long. “Nah nah nah”. To him, this is Cyrano de Bergerac. Oh to be young. But we have all been shoutyman. It HURTS to be shoutyman. But it’s nice too, just to put it all on everybody else. Aaaaaaaaaargh. Let all all those flies out of your mouth in a big solid black stream. Graaaaaaaa. Spit the little ones. They can all just coalesce briefly in noise and then disperse like the plaintive wailing of that rejected young man. Who appears to have stopped now. Just as I’m going to sleep.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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