Narrative: Grass, Cigarettes, Coffee, and Carpet

The night gives birth to another, expected day. Morning birds can be heard through the window of my apartment. I climb from the couch I am resting on and move to the gray, carpeted floor of the room. Reaching for an ashtray, filled to the brim with the discarded butts of cigarettes, I rest my weight on the balls of my feet, and lightly flick a solitary ash into the glass container. Pulling another drag of thick smoke into my lungs, I exhale and quietly listen to the chirping sounds of birds that seem to be making a natural love to the rising, summer sun.

From my vantage point of the window, I can see a soft, blue sky and the crisp, distinct leaves of a large, heavy tree. Rays of light angle their way through the leaf shapes and somehow find their way into the room. In the distance, away from the magic of the new morning, a lawn mower can be heard starting in the distance–chocking and sputtering to life. I stretch my arms out and sigh aloud into the cluttered, living space.

Peace.

Silence.

Blowing another wisp of smoke from my lungs and extinguishing my cigarette, I stand to my feet and turn away from the window. In the distance, I can no longer hear the engine of the mower. It must have quit on the owner because the sounds of a string being yanked and harshly pulled to restart it are now faintly audible. I laugh to myself, and I imagine that if I were a little closer, I would hear the gruff and disturbing sounds of someone struggling with a machine that is undoubtedly more archaic than they are. As I listen, I think to myself this is one of the few things enjoyable about apartment living.

Management takes care of things like growing, green grass.

Moving to the kitchen–a small space with pots, pans, and other assorted, cooking-ware–I venture from the carpeted floor and instantly feel cold linoleum on my bare feet. I had meant to purchase a rug of some sort to lay upon the floor, but for some reason, had not gotten around to it. Opening a container of coffee, and finding a silver spoon, I meticulously fill a coffee filter with enough of the dark, ground beans to make another pot of the morning drink. I pour tap water into the maker and wait.

The coffee, stirred in with sugar and a little cream, will taste sweet and refreshing on my lips. Standing on the cold linoleum of the kitchen floor, I think how I will drink it slowly and feel it summer my throat and my stomach with rich, enveloping warmth. I think for a brief second how comfortable I feel in my kitchen, despite the feeling of chilly linoleum against my bare skin, and for a few, fleeting seconds, I close my eyes and nearly fall asleep on my feet.

After taking a hot shower, I comb my hair, try to brush the tar stains from my uncaring teeth, and then slowly dress. Grabbing for my keys, my backpack filled with college texts, and a light jacket, I move toward the door, nearly tripping over an unused bicycle sitting in the entryway. Cursing at it–as the annoyed homeowner must have at the indignant lawnmower–I reach for the doorknob and turn…

Management will take care of it.

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