Looking For Colours

It was Adam’s 26th birthday. The drive towards the inland country home was a rolling film of fast-moving colours; the mysterious blue of the ocean bled away into the thick shades of green, denoting the rugged wilderness surrounding his best friend’s house. They were hosting one of their famous soirées, Michael and his prudent wife Clare, to celebrate. It had been arranged for months, in a controlled and orderly manner of course.

Adam’s car rolled seamlessly into the winding driveway; a cavernous entryway itself lined with fine, twisting branches arcing overhead. In the soft glow of dusk, the green surrounding Adam seemed to shift and twirl; small blossoms of fading colour were sprinkled around his vision before they were rapidly snuffed out by the elongating shadows as the sun dipped below the earth. The crickets began to sing as Adam trudged to the front door, peering into the silent house through the stained glass window. Towards the right side of the house, a back door opened and light spread out over the forest floor outside.

“ADAM!!! Buddy, happy birthday! Come inside this way, it’s going to be a swell party. I know you’ll love it.”

The booming voice gave way to a bear hug as Adam followed his friend inside. All in good time, he thought, meandering. You have no idea what you signed up for, but try to be happy. Please try.


Something was wrong. There was the pungent smell of high-grade disinfectant dispersed around the room; the bed felt too firm against his back to be the soft mattress he was expecting. Adam’s eyelids began to flutter open, against his will. There was a searing brightness here. Everything was white; tubes snaked all over his bed, their ends embedded into holes in both his arms. A clear drip was running through them, and he could hear the steady beep of a monitor…close by…next to him as he turned his head. An explosion of pain blasted around his cranium; he could almost imagine the cracks forming paths along his skull as he reached his hands up to cradle his head. A sharp nudge, then there was only darkness.

Adam woke up this time with a woman by his bedside. Why here? Why a hospital? She spoke in a soft voice:

“Sir, you need to remain lying down. Don’t make any sudden movements or I’m afraid you’ll need another bout of painkiller to stop you from screaming again.”

I was screaming? What is going on here lady?

“Please stop fussing, Mr Harris. You have been in a car accident. That was 2 weeks ago. You must stay here and rest.”

What? This is simply not possible. Has anybody come to visit? Does anybody know I’m in here?

She left the room, the door closing with a definite click.


My pile of belongings was gone; my friends had disappeared; the stretch of sand was completely deserted. Well, there was no beach where I was then; nowhere near close to my home. Just a stinking, stark hospital room and months of painful recovery…once I got over my full coma of course. And even after that, no one visited. Michael and Clare, my wife…all gone; like I fell off the earth without as much as a sound. When I woke up, I just realised that I needed to learn everything over again. Like I was a pathetic infant without the excuse of being cute and a newborn.
And I couldn’t see colour anymore; those shades of blue or green or anything in between. They simply weren’t there, no matter what time of day. All I could distinguish was white or grey. The years crawled on. I could not stop my brain from wandering, wondering why I had lost everything. Why I was stuck in this life?

I feel asleep one night, for once, and dreamed.

Seagulls were screeching. A crash of waves, pounding the shore, outside my bedroom window. I was in my own house. Walking down the stairs to the kitchen, I noticed my wife. She was baking, the rich scent of brownies wafting from the open oven.
“Sweetheart. You’re awake.”
“Why wouldn’t I be? May I ask where you have been? I have been in the hospital, waiting for you everyday to tell me that never happened. The car crash the night of my birthday, drunk at the wheel. Where were you?”
“I’ve been here. You have been attached to loss, to despair for so long. I was afraid I couldn’t reach you again. I was terrified. You can overcome this. I love you so much. Please, wake up.”

Her voice echoed, until there was darkness again.

Colour. It was so wonderful, not just to see white. True they were block colours, but they were beautiful none the less. I realised something in that moment. I was attached to my past to the point where I let it rule me. Destruction, death, nothing I want to talk about anymore. There are as many bad things as good things, and now i choose to hold onto light, not dark.
Otherwise where would the colour be?


*Artwork unknown- Pinterest*


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