The Supra-Spastic Razzle Dazzle Misdemeanors of Oregon Jupiter – Episode 78
By Nate Schmold
The air stunk of a thickly obscene musk. A mixture of body odor, unwashed clothing and damp human breath. The temperature was almost unbearable, pulling moisture from the floorboards and drywall, causing them to bow and twist in haphazard configurations. A lack of windows helped explain the staleness of the room—the only source of sickly blue light coming from the crack under a doorway in one far corner. The light oozed across the floorboards like a virus, adding dramatic visual poetry to their disfigured appearance. About 10 feet from the door, the light tripped on a piece of wood, causing it to break and splinter upwards along what seemed to be a gnarled chair leg.
The remaining luminescence dragged itself along the floor until another chair leg interrupted its desperate crawl into dark oblivion. The sound of painful stressed wheezing reached down from above the chair and gripped on to the errant light, pulling it ever upwards: upwards along a pair of bony meatless legs; upwards past two shriveled thighs sprinkled in short scraggly hair and bits of rotten food particles; and ever upwards until the final labored push sent the light exhausted and reflecting weakly on two rusty steel wrist-sized clasps with large, but withered hands dangling limply out of each one.
The breathing never changed, always a steady pace, maintaining a rhythmical monotony within its jaw-clenching wheeze. Even if you just heard it, you would cough deeply from your own lungs with the crawling thought that the spider of a noise was coming from inside of your chest cavity. The only variation in the wheeze was a barely audible squeal, as if whoever was breathing still had one single strand of life left in him, and it played out occasionally like a miniature broken violin, randomly oscillating at the lowest possible decibel as a bow of misery stroked against it unsteadily.
Footsteps could be heard outside the door to this dark nightmarish prison, and the shards of light that manage to sneak through the crack under the door were disrupted with the intrusive shadows of a pair of peculiarly clean, somewhat simple, brown leather boots.
Music: Goldfrapp – Deer Stop
Photo: Nate Schmold