Months and there is no more joy in this. It has been nothing but a very long night of total blackness broken only by the monotony of daylight. I have been trekking longer and though my memory is an ocean of blankness, I know because my calves and thighs rebel when I compel them to move. Where I have been, where I have gone, what I have done I do not recall. I have become a slave to the spirit of the night for it hijacks my sinews and works me like a puppet. Night the puppeteer and I sleep to trek on its ominous theatre;  a plaything strung on strings I cannot escape.


Tonight when that hazy illumination settles on my befuddled brain, I am standing in front of a building bedazzled by strobe lights flashing and leaping… leaping to the rhythm of some invisible tune. And then… I am being hugged by two men of enormous proportions. Their faces glimmering down on me, suffused with smiles that seem to touch their ears and words spewing from their lips, reach my own ears in subdued volumes.

Levitating between these behemoths, I am deposited and my feet find ground in front of a door and from behind it  resonate a feeling intensely familiar. The behemoths pull and the doors come apart. Within is a chasm from where sounds reach me in muffled tones and like the irresistible siren call I cross the threshold and step unto the tongue of this dark beast. It swallows and I am sliding into its bowels. From behind with a passing glance, an exasperated fellow from the queue in very bright colours tries to force through a wall made of behemoth. He is picked up and dumped on the pavement as the doors shut with a thud.

I stand at the head of a terrace, stretching below is a sea of the most turbulent constitution; heads bobbing with base animation, hands flailing above and everywhere people engulfed in a frenzy of euphoria. All of them covered in spots of coloured light spewing from glittering and spinning globes overhead to crawl over their bodies and like agents of  torment, their hands try to peel off but never quite succeeding.

The atmosphere is charged; electrified with intensity beyond anything my mind can comprehend or describe. Even though a chill hangs around, I can smell sweat. The air is heavy with it. I stand staring and with a gentle nudge, the night hand pushes and I am thrust into the midst of this untamed sea. Untethered and unanchored, I move like a drifting log. In the heart of this very familiar place it is a conflagration; sweat, booze, drugs, lust, sex and even more ways to say sin.

Adrift, a body enthralled in the moment bumps into me giving me a severe jolt, spilling his drink on me. He is spitting curses at me. I stare at him like a child bully stares at a cockroach. He invades my space poking a finger in my chest as he sputters more invectives and in a flash, my right hand moves in a swinging arc. I feel contact with something hard, I feel a crack like twigs breaking and the one who was a moment ago cursing is flying through the air causing a ruckus before landing splayed on the ground amidst a hundred shuffling, uncaring feet. Not quite sure of what just happened, I take a step towards the sprawled body but then I am being pulled away. Like a fish caught on a hook is pulled from the depths of its element, powerless, I am pulled away from this sea and without a will of my own, I follow.

Behind a column, my feet come to a stop facing a woman, her face slender, shiny and ebony. Her eye lashes long and black. Her nose pointy and her lips full. The curly folds of her black hair caress the side of her face . In one deft move she flicks her hair and I see lushness bouncing all over her. This is beauty! My eyes stray all over her, ravenous. Her voice, a velvety melody, brings my straying eyes back to her face. Her lips part, soft and luscious as her words come rolling out but all I can see is the tantalising saliva stretching and breaking beneath a tongue so pink my heart is racing. My body that rarely felt, catches fire and I am grabbing her forcing my lips on hers, hungry for her saliva. She shoves me away and lands her fingers, dainty and long, on my cheek. A sting registers in my cerebellum but beyond that I am unfazed, only confounded. Strange! I tilt my head slightly,. I feel my eyes squinting and lips curling into a devious smile, I see trepidation in the eyes of this angel! Her chest rising and falling like mortar shelling, her bosom pounding to the brutal rhythm  of her heart beating and then an explosion…

In a flash she is on me; arms wound so tight around my neck for a moment they suffocate me. Her lips plastered against mine, our saliva mingled. Her tongue like a probe is exploring every nook and every cranny inside my mouth and in the most savage motions. A hundred different sounds from moans to groans to grunts escape her. I can feel her grinding, wildly, against my crotch. I become hard all over. My hands traverse her fertile plains and like a desperate conquistador eager to explore a new domain, they are running circles all over her, entering and prodding in places I do not even recognize. As her body contracts, I can feel a fire coursing from deep inside this woman. She maneuvres her hand through my fabrics to the epicentre of my passion, encircling my throbbing member in hands that must have been fashioned in the halls of undiluted ecstasy and my brains climb through the highest clouds and break upon planes of uncharted revelry.

I swing her around with a force reminiscent of beasts and shove her against the column and a guttural green light escapes her parted lips. Instantly, my pulsating member is thrust, deep inside slippery tenderness. Aaah…this is paradise! When I die, I want to be buried here. Sweet, salacious… pleasure and I am pounding from all directions behind. Her hands grabbing everything; the column, my neck, my buttocks and my face which I bury in the nape of her neck and hair exuding scents from heaven because her lilac nails must be trying to scratch out my eyes.

The one thing I am most like to remember from this waking dream is the voice of this black paradise screaming. It lashes unto my consciousness and draws life from my vehemence. These wild screams energise me, empowering the savage, animating primordial urges and I pound. Symbiosis! Her screams and my animalistic grunts are mingled and drowned away in the tsunami of big bass beats. No one hears, no one cares. All is deep and locked in the throes of their own overwhelming passions.

I grab her roving hands and with one hand immobilise them high up on the column. With the other I press her blossoming and bountiful behind deeper against my groin, my hardened phallus, relentless, pounding her dripping wetness. Her screams ever still, like the jockey urging its horse forward, drive me to work harder and I pound. Writhing out of her constrained position and swinging around in one swift and fluid motion, she, her eyes dreamy, deep in ecstasy, anchors both hands on my shoulders and hoists herself up and like a perfect symphony the insides of my elbows finds the inside of her knees. Jacked up and pressed against the ever pliant column, her eyes are a thrashing whip and the thoroughbred at the request of its master continues its sprint, never slowing, speeding across the wild velds of esoteric sweetness.

And swiftly like a bolt of lightning striking, my thighs begin to vibrate and from some place deep, ancient and aflame, two fires become intertwined, yoked in a passionate bind like a marauding juggernaut forcing its way through mighty gates of resistance, tearing them asunder to burst upon the lights of a domain bedecked with the morphing colours and the million stars of a timeless kaleidoscope. She goes limp and collapses on my neck. My hardness follows suit and slips out of its saddle. The burning phallus is tempered by air. And like that… total illumination crashes on me as the night veil is lifted. Her name is…

KAFAYAT and I know her.

Her beauty still dazzles. Her eyes still those of an enchantress only now laced with a sadness haunting the farthest recesses of their beauty. This is DESIRE! I have been here before! This is where the ghosts that haunt my dreams were born. Friday and the life of the party was me. This is where I had failed at my obligation. This is where it all fell apart. This is where I let her die.

As the weight of the memories came, strangulating like vengeful spirits, I see terror in her eyes. Why is she terrified! What could have terrified her so! Then it dawns on me: she was there. a witness and her eyes are reliving the horror creeping into mine. I stumble away and into the sea of writhing bodies. Like a knife thrust into a man’s flesh draws blood and every thrust draws new blood, so did every contact with the enraptured creatures inhabiting the sea of bodies open a well of memories, each a cudgel, battering and badgering laying siege to the fortress of my sanity. Clawing my way through the storm every step draining my lungs and every contact sapping the strength from my bones. Every step became a contest between laying down to eternal rest and pressing on.

And just then, bursting out of the bowels of the dance floor, I grope for my way, rushing out of the citadel of unwanted memories. The cold night air catch me in its arms filling my lungs with life, saturating my senses and crowding out illumination. Straightening, I see Kafayat coming after me. My legs gain animation, the last of the light is forced out and the waking dream returns. Soon I am alone in the world of my night and from a dark corner I hear a muffled sob. The night hand compels me closer.

Illuminated only by the dim lights of a nearby money machine, a man in very bright colours is kneeling over a woman and from her escape muffled sobs. With one hand he holds a piece of glimmering metal over the woman and with the other struggles with his belt buckle . He is not alone. Another man pins her down by the shoulders. He releases his belt buckles and with quick movements undo his zip, its tearing sound surprisingly sharp. Now with one hand he is forcing her knees apart as the muffled sobs grow louder.  Facing resistance, he thrusts the knife with impatience into the ground beside the hapless woman and the sobs morph into a full blown wail . The other man quickly smothers her cries with a cupped palm.

Instigated by an invisible prod, I come upon them and I say something. Jolted out of their preoccupation, the man in bright colours leaps to his feet, his belt buckle tinkling in the silent night, his trousers crumpled around his ankles. Flustered, with one hand he  retrieves his knife from its sheath in the earth and with the other pulls up his trousers. The other man even more flustered releases his weight from the woman and she dashes into the night. I take a step forward and the other man takes one backward but not the one in bright colours. Now with his trousers firmly strapped around his waist, he seemed bolder.  Another step forward and he strikes. I see  him swing the glimmering metal… and slash. I feel warmness trickle down my cheek. My hand rise to my cheek and it comes away with liquid redness. He starts to speak, a menacing glare on his face. I glance from my bloodied hand to my assailant and a wave of black fire engulf me. Lounging at him, I can see the other man completely flustered take to his heel. The man in bright colours intent on his aims holds his knife steady and swings again as I am flying forward in blind rage.

A quick rustle from the night… a crack and Kafayat, a wooden plank in hand and bare footed is standing over the man in the very bright colours. Panting, her forehead glistening with tiny beads of sweat, she screams at me. Her words break through my translucent veil of consciousness.

“Are you insane! Do you want to kill yourself!”

I stare at her for a moment then turn away to resume my odyssey as my mind echoes a reply, “Maybe.”

She drops her weapon and comes after me for the third time in one night and I flee, melting into the night.

Every other thing is a blur.

It is daylight and I am behind a counter. A woman is regarding me with a mischievous glint in her eyes. “Did you wrestle with a cat last night!” I stare at her uninterested, weariness hammering through my bones. “Well, she continues, we do not want you scaring off the customers. I’ll get someone else to take your post while I tuck you where you won’t be scaring away any customers.”

I am sitting behind another counter when my phone buzzes giving me a jolt out of my sleep walk.

It is a text message. ‘Meet me tonight at the place xoxoxo

At the door my supervisor is squinting at me. A customer clears his throat, a mischievous knowing in his eyes. His presence registers and the words come out,

“You are welcome to Swift bank.”

He smiles graciously.

The Somnambulist