Panel 1 Dec. 7, 4:30 A.M. Monday.

Got butterflies and can't sleep. This eternal blueness is getting me down. No Jane. Heavy sorrow, except that sounds too dramatic for the way I feel.

I've been sitting here by the window of my room ever since about 4:00 A.M. looking out. Watching trucks and cars go by on State Street in the snowy night. Tail lights the brightest of all reds making streaks of color in the dark. And the hulking frames of the semis hurtling past with big letters on the side, "ROADWAY." And the cars, the early morning wanderers, cold maybe, listening to the radio, balling the jack through hick town named Alum Falls, proud boosters of the Alum Falls Alligators, wanting to get home from foreign, hostile land. The truck driver bundled close in his high cab, feeling warmth in his belly from the last coffee stop fading, counting miles until the next one...

Quite a past time.

I'm not going to school today, I don't think. For one thing I'd be too sleepy, for another I just don't want to go. Jane will be there with Comstock and the same pain will come, intense. The same pain of Bill Braddock last summer. Before final victory...

...last summer, memories of heaven and hell. I remember hot, oppressive heat, laying on my bed in early evening, pink-yellow twilight outside, sweat sticking sheets to album of Porgy and Bess blowing hot, sensual saxophone jazz out of my record player, making me think of Jane...and my dates with her and frustrations, torture of thinking of her, of wanting her so badly...the good times, Jane...the bad times, Doc's corn field. Morning - it's already stifling. No rain for more than a week. Dust raises up with every step, the brown, split, caked earth. Sweat running off down forehead, temples, cheeks, nose, lips, chin, neck. Thirst, God, thirst. Long drinks from crystal clear water in glass gallon jug, tepid, warm water. Jug sitting in the dust with sweat bees clustered around the top. Thinking of Jane as I twist off one more ear of corn for the lecherous old miser to sell to his goddamned old lady, old retired professor customers. The killing red-hot hate in the field at the field, at anything that had anything to do with Doc and his goddamned farm. Miserable, feeling so hopeless, so far from everything I loved and lived for. From my room, from Jane, from everything that meant anything to me. Riding my bike home, trudging in, too tired to walk another step, to do anything.

And during the long, hot nights of crickets and locusts, my feeling for Jane making me want to scream...and now it's back.