“S”

Whenever she looked out her window, she saw a big “S” on the red brick building across from her. Just one letter, a simple one, with a serif on either end. It wasn’t the most innocent or joyful of letters; “snakes” and “sadness” and “sordid” all began with it, and she couldn’t help thinking of those and other harsh words whenever she looked at her “S.”

But not everyone had a big, two-story-tall letter painted on the building across the street. She could tell it was that large because she could see the windows next to it. Okay, so maybe it was only one-and-a-half stories tall, but it was up around the tenth or eleventh floor, and everything looks bigger higher up. Or so she thought at least.

It was kind of like Stephen (another “S”, she always reminded herself) who was so beautiful and seemed so majestic. He was tall, and his head was disproportionately large for his body. But she couldn’t help being attracted to him, daydreaming about him, adding the letters to his name to her view of “S.” Stephen, for his part, didn’t know she existed because they’d never been introduced. In fact, his name wasn’t actually Stephen, it was Pedro, but she’d given him a name of her own after she’d seen him at the bagel shop on the corner for the fourth morning in a row.

She wasn’t an obsessive person, no, you couldn’t say that exactly, she thought, but she was definitely aware, and self-aware as well, and she knew there was a certain obsessive quality to her fascination with her “S.” Especially when she knew there must be more letters painted up there, hidden from her by the jut of another building that was angled just right to show her the one “S” and nothing else. She wondered whether she’d ever see the thing, the letter or the entire word, from street level and see what it was referring to. The thought was terrifying.

It All Comes Down To…

Nothing.

Sometimes, it all comes down to absolute nothingness. There is no reason to actions, no reason for behavior, no reason for thoughts. Sometimes, it all comes down to nothing, at all, whatsoever.

Despair sets in as the weeks go by. Despair coupled with longing and yearning for something else, something different, something old and familiar rather than new.

Not all the time. No, some moments are full of their own fierce emotion, their own wonderful, eventful, meaningful something. Those are the moments for which all is worthy, all is important, all is enduring and good. Those are the moments when things make sense, passions burning brightly, thoughts whirling in an endless stream of new ideas, new names and faces, new imagined scenery.

But sometimes, when the limbs are suffused with a weariness beyond measure, when the thoughts are sluggish and illogical, when the very tips of the fingers don’t wish to respond to a thing in the world… then, it all comes down to nothing, and the vast void that fills the future is frightening.