The waitress stopped at the coffee maker and began reloading her pot. She glanced back at his table; the mug still locked in his hand.
The setting and characters shifted. The clacking bones and whirring lenses morphed into the strange noises coming from all the people in the marketplace.
Again, he dipped the ink and again he whipped his hand over the canvas until before him was the rough shape of a choppy sea. The dots, he thought reminded him of the spray
Lemuel looked down at his first tattoo, a small black lemon on his right wrist. Made from the ink of octopi and squid pulled up, boiled down and inked by the “daubers”.
Surrounding loneliness with all that comes with writing and wrapping it all tightly around like a hug.
She swirled the noodles into a tight knot around the outer tines of the fork. Sauce dripped down her chin and onto her dress
Of swirling dust, giant tumbleweeds, snorting horses, distant gunshots, crying children and a woman’s embrace.
One hand fumbled for something inside a shirt. A necklace made of wooden beads all cascading down on a fishing line that ended in a lower case “t”.
Now after rain, rapids and collisions with hands and debris, the little boat was becoming heavy.
The DJ booth was right in front of me, blocking the quickest route. I turned left. Something licked my right ear. I looked.
When she felt the pressures of all that is external tightening her body, she would let the curves, slopes and speed of a ride loosen her up.
She wore the band t-shirt I gave her before COVID cancelled the concert. I wore the band shirt she gave me the night before I wouldn’t see her for weeks after.
Let it be
in the silent scream
of a shooting star.
The boy is catching the right diseases at the right time. Praise god, thank you father and continue to bless us.
There is no action that adds without subtracting or subtracts without adding. The idea that one is good and the other is bad is simply another part of the same vagaries we all maintain.
If what I think is true then ill have a cigarette, hell ill have a black and mild and suck it back until it melts the plastic or burns the wood.
“You see that star right in the middle of Orion’s belt? That’s where Jesus is right now. That’s where He (capital H) is going to come from to take us home. That’s where heaven is.”
It was true. In those moments however, when those men came with the full knowledge that we had not come close to anyone in the tournament, I wanted to play to win. Fuck fun, I wanted murder.
My threshold for surprise is changing right before my eyes, which are going blind. Oh god pull over now. Jesus. Ive never felt worse in my life.
A lonely moonlit bassoon plays discordant notes in my mind. Sympathy bangs the timpani and I scowl.
A lunch with my Aunt in which I cannot clearly remember if I was intoxicated or not. I remember itching for a cigarette as soon as I wolfed down the turkey salad on rye.
Blackout. Either way alcohol nurtures society but absolutely obliterates the individual.
And so, remember, I wrote this under a yellow porch light, slapping at mosquitoes, coughing up smoke from wild fires and thinking of me or you, or me.
I look around at the others seated at the table. I don’t know yet if they’re people. I haven’t even figured out if I am to be human for the evening.
We bullshit some more. The couple danced. I can never remember names. Then the girl danced alone. I was towing the line between drunk and insanity.
If you’re really against “flaming hot cheetos” that run “democracies” (your word, not mine) like dictators, then either put a bullet in his head or give your jabbering jaw a little slack. I know at least my ears will stop ringing from all your white noise, and it is white noise in more ways than one.
I have a hot temper
I am confident in changing a tire
I tremble when jumping a car battery
The question of my last breath is either sober or whiskey soaked. The continuous monologue in my mind reaches the end of its reel. I am not making sense but its my senses that make me.
Maybe I didn’t say hi. Maybe I needed more time. God knows you do.
The tooth fairy took all your teeth but I think she also has your innocence, and you never saw a dime.
You’re grateful, excited and ready to move on but at the same time you’re wondering what happened, always wondering what happened, so that you’re not doomed to repeat your mistakes with the unicorn who touched your arm and said hello.
The glorious comfort of a star within Orion’s Belt being the home of Jesus does not comfort me. Lying to grandpa on his deathbed was a kindness, a little white lie. I do not know if there is or is not a heaven.
The two made their way to the bar in silence, glancing at each other every so often. He looked down at his drink and around the flashing lights and sounds. She adjusted her cap and looked around at the flashing lights and sounds.
Tear down the bricks
Tear up the flix
Tear down the walls
Tear up the dolls
Tear down the malls
Tear of the curtain to see all the tricks.
Why should his sanity ever be in question when it swam in the same pool of saturated judgements and opinions as those who were insane and those who labeled others insane. It was all the same doggie paddle, just different ends of the pool.
An empire of
rotted fence posts
“If I had to guess, you have about 10 to 15 minutes of living left to do. That’s a gift in my book, not many people are given the satisfaction of knowing how much time they have before, well you know.”
The rain drops on the window made all the head lights look like shooting stars passing him. No one was walking the streets. Homeless were huddled at bus shelters, doorways and underneath shop overhangs.
Follicles salute bloody snouts. Extending past split ends, peering at red snow, hearing howling, growling and snarls.
After climbing back to the sand, you lay down, exhausted. The tide begins lapping at your feet, your legs, your thighs, your hands and you remember.
At dusk, the end glows like ancient amber lodged in a fossilized tree. It’s color dimming and brightening with each inhale or gust of wind.
He stood, stage right, peeking out of the curtain, watching them. Some opened the programs, others sipped drinks and in the balcony, a few focused their binoculars. They were nearly ready.
We may tell ourselves they are prudent choices but the heart plants a seed of doubt and only time will tell us if that doubt will grow into regret or die buried deep.
I started walking down the street. There were luxury shops I had seen in downtown’s across the U.S. and Europe. There were street vendors selling the things I had seen about this place on television and movies. I got the sense that they had set up shop for all the backpack carrying people who needed sunscreen applied every 2 hours.
I grew up in the land where 14-year-olds built houses in foreign countries. Where 15-year-olds drove Mercedes-Benz and 16-year-olds started thinking about their parent’s colleges.
A cube of marble with arms, a chest, stomach, legs and feet with none of the ripples and bumps of a completed piece. He was a block.
Everything was imagined from mythical beasts to majestic feasts. Yet he could not conjure her, even in his own memory. She would not appear in his imagined world.
I put her clothes from the hospital in the hamper and sat on the bed. What were all those forms I needed to fill out? What were those phone numbers I had to call? Why did I put her clothes in the hamper?
“Turn, bend over, spread your cheeks and cough.” He paused and looked at the other freshly imprisoned men complying. His clothes black with a strip of white, wadded up on the floor behind him.
I knew she was just extending a guilty hand. I looked around the yard and spotted chains and a lock on the lids of their trash cans.