I don’t know if I believe in God but I’ve always believed in my old friend Naomi. I’d never admit this to anyone but you but I really sort of think that because she was my best friend in school her faith will make up for mine if it all goes down the way I fear it will. That’s how it was to be around her; like it would mean something to God that you sat beside her in History every day for six years. People are silly, risk their whole lives on sketchy reasoning. Like I still have a bookmark she gave me more than a decade ago. It looks new, I’ve never used it for its actual function. To me it’s not a bookmark. It’s a prophecy.
It’s one of those serene watercoloured ones. Purple fir trees melting into a lavender lake, a pink smudge of setting sun dissolving into orange then yellow. I was going to say the real sky never looks that way but I just looked out my window and you’d never believe it if I tried to tell you. No fir trees though, bridges and rooftops. It’s made from at least fifty per cent recycled fibers which doesn’t seem like much now but was pretty fancy in nineteen ninety nine. The front looks new but the back has bits of sticky blu-tack on it from when I’d stick it on every bedroom wall above every desk I’ve ever owned.
It’s pretty saccharine if I can say one discouraging thing about it – the message beneath the fir trees. All hallmarky and things about daydreaming and cloudwatching and having the courage to dive into your wild mind and go swimming there. When I read those words, I start to think maybe I’m mistaken and it’s not a prophecy but nine inches of fifty per cent recycled cliche. So I don’t read those words anymore, when I hold it in my hands every so often and look at it, wondering, whispering please please please. Please be true. I just read the top line, the words above the watery yellow:
There, that’s my silly admission, sketchy reasoning, voodoo, what have you. I know you have one too. What is it?