Why Were You Screaming Last Night/ Why does the pale moon shine?
Why Were You Screaming Last Night?
By Kevin Limiti
A pale moon shines down upon me.
-Was I screaming? I ask
-Yes. You woke everyone up.
I feel bad about it, but I don’t remember screaming or being loud. I just remember sitting at my desk working. My book had just been published and I’m a very famous person now. J.K. Rowling knows this. I’ve got about a thousand more years of life; plenty of time to write the greatest story ever told.
The woman with the Jamaican accent herds us into the cafeteria but there is not enough room. Everyone is staring. I feel neither embarrassment nor exclusion. I take my meal of a ham sandwich, ginger ale, and little packets of mayonnaise and sit on a blue plastic chair and eat. The food is great. It’s revitalizing; especially the ginger ale. You need ginger ale to live. It’s like alcohol.
I am sitting there taking notes in my notebook. I am a writer and I have to understand this experience for what it is. It seems like I’ve stumbled upon something grand, and that’s how I feel in the pit of my stomach. I see an Asian girl reading ‘The Perfect Blue’ and I know that book. I’ve read it, and now I want to read it backwards. That way I know what it’s really about. Just like the Giver. The Giver was good backwards, but forwards it is a mystery only some can discover. I am an inductee into it’s mysteries that began with Plato shouting ‘Eureka” so many years ago. An agency dedicated to social good. Everywhere I go there are hints of people’s involvement. My father is a member, but he’s forgotten. His memory will awake now that I’ve ended up here of all places.
The hours are ticking away. I know I am dying, if I am not already dead. The Wayans Brother’s are on TV and it is genius and not a comedy. I weep as I realize how the whole thing is about me. These are all the mistakes I’ve made, all the lies I’ve been told, all the friends I’ve had, good or bad. In the end though, I get the thing that truly matters to me. I became the happiest person alive. The whole cross dressing angle was simply an elaborate metaphor of my attempts to discover who I am. Now I know.
I have to take a shower soon. If I am fearful and I hesitate even for an instant, I will die but if I’m strong and courageous I will pass and will become famous and wealthy. I feel my way along that stretch of hallway that is the green mile, as described in Stephen King’s novel. I am Rocky Sullivan as I jump into the shower without even taking off my boxers. I am happy though because I know I am alive when that cold water pours all over my body. I take my time and scrub everywhere, then I go to my room. I don’t sleep though. I cannot sleep. I try to write, but I want to get out of here. I don’t want to stay here any longer. I hate this place.
The watchman is there blocking my exit. He is my son. I know this because he looks just like me. I stare at him. He tells me to go to sleep. He is Folk. He is a doctor or maybe a nurse; reading Mario Puzo. I know it’s a good book and I really want to read it backwards, but he tells me he needs this book. He seems upset for some reason and I guess he’s either happy for me, but maybe sad. He must know how tough it is for me. Maybe he’s already gone through this. Maybe he is me. I want to go to sleep but I feel like I will die. I try to tell him this, but he just tells me to go to sleep.
Maybe I should just die then. I look under my bed. There are needles and syringes everywhere. There are white packets of heroin and cocaine. I can hear them calling. They want me. They’re coming after me. I see that guy again too, the big one with the goatee. He is injecting it into himself. I’m scared of him. I want to die. I want to go to sleep.
But I can’t. Too much is at stake here. My mind races backwards and forwards without stopping. J.K. Rowling sits in the next room, she is the overlord of this facility located somewhere in Canada.
Of course, it had to have been in Canada. There was too much at stake in America. Way too much at stake. The cycle was in full effect; everything was coming full circle. First it was the Lord of the Rings, then it was Star Wars, then it was Harry Potter, then it was Fight Club, and it’s all me. All of it.
I knew for years that the government was becoming too oppressive, but it wasn’t until the last few days that I really began to see just how much in danger we were. Without the overall power to start up a movement with greater political power then in the 60’s, we were a national security threat, and the hints have been dropped so that in some way we could carry out the mission, and in essence gain the happiness we so desired.
Let me explain myself: My name is Michael Callaghan. Things are going so fast that it’s impossible to write everything down. I feel so tired, but something is compelling me to write. As far as I can tell, I’m at some kind of school. This has to be a school for gifted children. Immediately as I walked into my room, there were books all around. Books I had known since my childhood. I saw Harry Potter and the Hobbit. It was very nostalgic. Was that their intention? I don’t know.
All I know is that I am obviously being tested in someway. Whatever way it is, I’m not sure yet. I can’t second guess myself; can’t analyze my actions. If I do so, then something bad will happen. I’m just not sure what it is yet.
I just walked into the doctor’s office. I forget everything he said except he asked if I smoked marijuana. I couldn’t exactly remember, only I know I did whenever I could so I told him that. He put me down as one joint per day type of guy, even though I mostly smoked blunts.
My mom came with my sister the other day. I don’t really remember much of what we talked about, only I was always trying to analyze what was going on and what I was doing here. I thought my sister might’ve been my wife. Now I’m not sure. I remember someone named Frank. We got into a fight. Was that why I was here? I cut him somehow, but someone told me I came out of it with bruises all over my forehead. I don’t remember it hurting.
So this is Queens. A nice cage; a nice sun; plenty of young black men and women who are actually as crazy as everyone thinks they all are. Two of the younger black kids are tossing around a football, a couple of them are playing cards, some are talking to the guardians; I am writing, because that’s what I do. I write.
It’s not as if I can stop what I’m doing; too many things flow through me. I keep on forgetting what I’m thinking, and I’m writing everywhere. My J.R.R. Tolkien book is full of notes all of the pages and inside cover. As I look over my notes, I feel more confused then I was before.
I wanted to see Transformers but nobody else wanted to so we watched Little Man instead. I feel like a racist for calling it a black comedy but that’s what it is. I just didn’t get it.
During our community meeting, we talked about how my girlfriend had been writing mean things about everything in her notebook. She apologized, but I knew she was a liar. I requested a promotion but it was denied on the basis that I didn’t have the proper paperwork. Apparently, it works like a points system.