Friday, October 7, 2011


Blood and Other Cravings is available, with a new story, "Bread and Water," from your reporter.

Jihan was a softspoken Hispanic man with African features. His air of thoughtfulness, which could still be distinguished from the vacant quiet of being sick, struck me. A greying moustache blurred the gauntness of his face, half obscuring his mouth, and his sleepy eyes were always downcast and apparently unseeing. He’d been present when the other one, the one I’d been introduced to that day, died. The nurses tried to keep our morale up by gathering us together periodically, and I heard about it the last day they propped us up in front of the television in the day room. We noticed that we were only five; the nurses evidently had planned to keep this from us, telling us only that so-and-so was a bit too sick to join us. Jihan, however, had been visiting this person when he went. Jihan struggled to make himself heard over the noise from the television. “Garfield Goes Hawaiian.” With haunted eyes, he kept pressing his hands to his throat, and his lips trembled as he spoke. The remote was missing, and none of us could get up. Jihan’s voice failed, but he continued to whisper to himself until the nurses came. Not more than a few days after that he hanged himself with the shower curtain from the back bathroom."

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