Thursday, July 28, 2011


Note: this post has nothing to do with Allen Ginsberg.

Work sucked today. I took a suicide call.

The caller was a stranger who heard the commotion and went in to see if everything was alright. It wasn't. The man had been hanging for hours, probably all night, when they found him.

I've heard a lot of screaming and crying at work. It's just part of the everyday soundtrack now. There are different varieties: the snarling rage that attends customer and neighbor disputes, and on the most idiotic pretexts; hysterical cries of physical pain when a pregnant young woman gets beat up by her boyfriend––yet again; the quiet, hollow keening I heard as a woman described the sexual abuse of her little boy.

But, before today, I'd never heard anything like this. You could hear the pattern repeat over and over as family members entered the room for the first time, only to find––in place of their loved one––the cold, rigid obscenity of death. One man could only repeat, again and again, "Oh god, oh god, he did it. Oh god." The sounds were hardly distinguishable as human.

And I don't think I'll ever be able to forget them.

So, just a reminder, if you're suffering, if you're contemplating doing something horrible and irrevocable, please reach out and get help. Because, I can promise you, you don't want to cause the kind of pain necessary to elicit what I heard today.

1 comment:

dixonfamily said...

Oh Nick, I'm so sorry. I'm not quite sure what else to say. Those experiences never quite leave you. I guess that's why we all need to try hard to really enjoy all the good things life has to offer because without a doubt there is more than enough misery to go around. I love you! I hope today is a better day.