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Interview with Zombie (for a novel)

July 29, 2011

Can you still feel pain?


Can I still feel pain?


You know, if I pinched you. Hit you.


That kind of pain. Maybe not as much as you. No. Probably not. That is, I can’t exactly remember how well I used to be able to feel it. But I think I’m a bit more numb to physical pain.


Other kinds of pain?


Emotional? Spiritual?






Yes you can feel it?




Just like a living person?


Just like a living person. Worse.


Why do you say worse?


It just is. It’s worse. The pain.


Yes, but you said you couldn’t remember exactly how well you could feel pain when you were alive. What do you have to compare it to? The emotional pain, that is.


How do you know when you aren’t right? I mean, how do you know when something is wrong with you?


Well. I compare how I’m feeling with how I normally feel. But if you can’t remember what it’s like to be alive—


I can remember what it’s like to be alive.


Just a moment ago you said—


I know. I remember what I said. I know when something is wrong. I know when I look at my reflection that something is wrong. I know when I look at my hands and when I look at the world around me that something is wrong.


What do you mean?


I know when I go to sleep and feel it, and when I wake up and it’s still there—the feeling is still there and it has been the whole night—it hasn’t left. I know. I sleep and when I sleep I dream, and my dreams are of death. My dreams are of a death that is more dead than I am.


I’m sorry. Are you suggesting a person can be dead, and then become deader?


You know nothing about death. You know nothing about life. You know nothing about is and is not. Are and aren’t. Was and is and wasn’t and will be, and won’t be. These are things you know nothing about. I kill a fish. It is dead. I cut it up. It is more dead. Deader. I eat the fish. Deader still.


Then the deader fish is giving you life. If you eat it.


Who gets life. Who.  Not the fish. Not the fish, no.


No. Not the fish. The man.


The man who killed the fish. The man who made him dead.


© Trent R. Leinenbach, Ashen Apples, 2011

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