He grew old covered by the caña leaves under the hammock bridge in his home town. A leaf storm alerted a neighbor who called the police, who called his grandmother, who refused to walk that Via Crusi and sent her only daughter strong enough to deal with la hojarasca. Twenty cents and the weight of the man’s body sucked his breath out. His shorts were down to his knees, ass still sticky, memories gone.
- It's been a week since Miguel's been fixing to poach around here.
- You be careful with that man, you hear. Do not get near him.
- Why auntie? Who is he? What's he look like?
- Fuck, you don't get near him because I say so.
- Don't ask a fucking thing you little brat. Why is this happening?
- Look at the way you dress him. He looks like a god-damn sissy.
- Do not leave him alone in the house.
- Yeah, who the hell is going to be watching here, you? All of us work.
- Look hear you little bastard, if I have to give
your mother any bad news I swear ...
What? NO YOU MAY NOT GO TO BED, and she smacked him.
- You want me to kill myself?
Nevertheless, he ventured too far from his shadow on his bike. Now, death sprawls on his dresser like a cold headless chicken. He travels to other galaxies, forgets to take chestnuts seeds he collected for the journey.
He broke his spectacles at the hospital (didn’t want to see people behind the open windows when the doctor churned his ass for sperm with a swab). Did anyone ask if that was what he wanted? Did anyone extend a hand, gave him a caress? Did anyone remember his birthday?
Then off to court where no one asked him a thing so he started to dig graves, Miguel smiled and winked at him. Narcissus bled and died from an incision in his ass. But he just walked to the bathroom, crawled into a corner and found himself in a hypnotic place he would later call Shangri-La. After all, he was barely ten.