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I am worth nothing. I almost wish he'd realize that, so he would see sense and stay away. Nirvana always sounds different when they play it on the radio; the anger is muted, the tone of the instruments not quite so eloquently twisted.

Kurt Cobain is sitting in my chair. He's rubbing his weary eyes into cigarette stubs and hanging his face on my wall like a gory painting while Courtney weeps.
I try to shove my dirty thoughts aside so I can focus on my math homework, but he stops me. Kurt says every thought has a place in your head, even the crazy ones. "Especially the crazy ones. After all," he murmurs drowsily, shattered skull swimming in the ghosts of a thousand nightmares. "If not for the madness, what would set you apart from the masses?"

I live with my boyfriend on the weekends. He's got a place downtown where he stays with his friends and his substances and his endless supply of proverbial baggage. I suppose it should have felt wrong when his acrid tobacco tongue devoured the last of my sticky innocence, but my eyes had turned milky blind to virtue and sin long before I was finished elementary school.

Kurt turns his wasteland eyes to the smooth flow of my inky poetry and yawns wide enough to swallow the world. He says, "Karma is nothing but a series of echoes screeching through this empty universe, strung together by eerie coincedence and the limitless human imagination. God is just a glorified game show host, spinning countless hectic lives through unfathomable chaos and immeasurable loss. It doesn't matter how rich you were in the beginning if we're all just gonna end dead up in the end."

My dentist says I might need braces. When I was a little kid, there was a tv show I used to watch about a girl who had braces. The metal in her mouth was always picking up radio broadcasts and intercepting strangers' phone calls, and one day the show stopped airing. Foolishly, I'd always wondered if maybe the actress lost her mind from the constant barrage of voices in her head.

"Or maybe the voices helped her find herself, and the government didn't like it." Kurt suggests haltingly through smoky teeth, leaning up against my Bob Marley poster. Nonchalance hangs heavy in the air surrounding his hazy form; I've grown accustomed to his casual presence slouching sarcastically in the gloom these past few days. He hangs back from normal people like the shy ghost he was never meant to become, adressing my problems and I only when the mood strikes him. His cigarette puffs blossom gently against the indifferent winter sky like a darker shade of grey in this blinding fog.

The only time he unnerves me now is when his face tilts soflty toward the east, and I catch a glimpse of the ghastly crater in his skull, gaping and shamefully exposed like a landfill drilled deep into paradise. Juicy skull fragments cling stubbornly to the back of his neck, and the rest of eternity beckons his snarling soul like a hooker-waitress.

He groans quietly with the effort of comforting his turbulent stomach, and tries to avoid blowing phantom chunks all over my bed. He fails miserably, and I watch in ill-conceived horror as a sickening spray of God-knows-what erupts from his mouth like sticky lava; Kurt Cobain has managed to splatter my bulletin board, and his chunky mess is streaming down the precious memories I've tacked there.

"Sorry about that, it happens whenever my boneyard calls me back." He grins sheepishly, reaches one hand up to wipe the corner of his mouth.
"Don't forget the things I told you, little stranger. It might come in handy someday."

The sharp crack of a gunshot fills my head in a painful blast of sound, and somewhere in the distance I can hear the first notes of Heart Shaped Box begin to play as one of the most interesting and troubled men in history dissipates quietly, back to the neverending concert in the sky.

Rest in Peace, baby. Make sure it wasn't a waste.

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