My shadow knows all my secrets
he follows me everywhere and hides in the dark.
As is the nature of shadows.
He hides and he watches
but most of all
Posted on: May 10 2013
5.0 / 5
She speaks like Daisy Buchanan
her every word is spoken
with too much breath
gestures purposefully graceful
she knows that they look at her
I hate her
because she knows
I hate her
because they do not look at me
Posted on: May 10 2013
5.0 / 5
Crosswalk talkers say a lot about us all.
Two in labels waiting with me, and one wonders what's with all the special ed cases around here? She meets with approval for her littleness in tittering, and then the light changes.
We cross, and I answer, since it was a question. It's clear they're from better digs in how their mouths drop open ugly.
Satisfied, in my own mean way, I continue to my destination.
A woman who peed herself six years ago makes small talk with her least supportive voices. To be better people than Coach and Burberry, The Twat Sisters, I encourage the schizo by replying from my own alienating lexicon.
Rather than measure my success, I venture home, where my toaster greets me. My oven asks how it went at the specialist's. I groan and open the fridge, which contains a meatball and some lemons gone bad. I close it again, and it ignores me. We are not on speaking terms at present.
The News comes on, spotlighting a fund-raiser. I recognize the broads.
Up there they look earnest. I know if it got around that empathy is easy to fake, no one would bother caring anymore, so I shut up next time I have a point to make.
Posted on: April 04 2013
5.0 / 5
by Moon Puppy
The train is due at twelve
As if for the end
Of the world
You lick your lips
Makes me think of dandelions
For no good reason at all
When we were young
We used to pluck them in hoards
Just to snuff them out and watch as
What was would cartwheel
Across the yard
I think of white dresses
Miss my sister
A man nearby laughs
Much too loud
The pocket of silence that
Fidgets the crowd
And you smirk
I rarely see you
I cross my arms
Cross my dizzy eyes
You stifle a pull
At the corners of your mouth
My watch announces:
The train is late
Nothing to do but wait
Posted on: March 30 2013
5.0 / 5
by Farmer Rye'N
Prologue: The Lollipop Express
ChronoGen/Unified Republics Law 16-25:
The Rape & Molestation Prevention Act
“In order to guarantee the safety of individuals who may be the target of sexual exploitation, it is with great pleasure that today we enact this law. No longer will any myte-infused person need worry about being raped or molested. Let your mytes put your mind at ease. You are protected. As they have guarded you against the multitude of diseases that ravage this world, now they’ll protect you from one of the most heinous crimes that can be committed.”
- Merrick Athol Richards
CEO ChronoGen Inc.
Travis Yan sat on a stone bench in a riverfront parkway. Frogs croaked and crickets chirped in the overgrown grasses nearby, serenading him into contentment for the moment. Somewhere in the distance laughter could be heard, carried on the rolling currents of a warm summers night.
He wasn’t sure how long he’d been sitting there, waiting, because he’d become transfixed by the reflection of the moonlight, dancing on the rippling water of the river before him. More minutes passed until his reverie was interrupted by a notification from his Cerebral Assistant, Kali.
‹Target detected. Trajectory indicates target will intercept your location in twenty-seven seconds.›
‹For fuck’s sake, Kali, just say Johnny is heading my way.›
‹Calibrating communication responses.›
Travis continued staring at the water and made no indication that he was aware of Johnny approaching and then sitting down beside him. Only when an open hand came to rest beneath his eyes, presenting him with a lollipop, did he break his forced gaze.
Keeping in character, as if he’d already partaken, Travis’s eyes went wide as he followed the hand, up the arm, to the angular face of the young man who had a glint of mischievousness in his eyes. Johnny smiled at him and gave a little nod with a flick of raising his dark brown eyebrows.
Travis smiled back, took the sucker from Johnny, unwrapped it, and slipped it into his mouth. Within seconds his saliva was breaking down the special confectionary and absorbing the cocktail of chemicals into his blood stream, allowing him to take a wild ride into the future.
He felt like he’d known Johnny Wright all his life, and yet, it’d only been three weeks since their lives intersected, intermingled, and forever became entangled.
Until two weeks ago, it’d been decades since Travis had experimented with drugs. Not since his high school and college days. He’d forgotten how fun it could be, living in a dream awake. How time could be slowed down or sped up, depending on the preferred means of transportation, which as of late, had been flash drives, brain grenades, and other assorted time trippers. And now, now it was time to catapult things into hyperdrive with a lollipop express.
A minute later, the drug beginning to take effect, a warm breeze arose and kissed his skin. He lifted his arms and let himself get raised up in its embrace, like a child being picked up by its parent. Higher and higher it took him, till he was cuddled in the clouds, soaring high above where he’d been.
Looking back down upon the earth he saw ants scurrying around everywhere, going about their itty-bitty lives. Except they weren’t ants. They were humants. Creatures born of malcontent, who blanketed the earth, gobbling up nature’s bounty, not for their continued survival of hard times to come, but for the ever fleeting pleasure of living one day at a time.
His heart grew heavy, turning to lead with guilt from eco-sin. He found his feet encased in concrete. The wind could no longer carry him, he was so weighed down. He fell to earth, tail-spinning down and found himself perched on the bench once again.
“Whoo, I hate to fly, except when I’m high,” Travis said with a laugh, trying to expel the sorrow that had befell him..
He leaned back and let his arms rest on the back of the bench in a lackadaisical manner.
Johnny said something.
It sounded like, “CerA is alive.” Which made almost no sense. Travis wasn’t sure he heard it right because Johnny had said it with a sucker in his mouth.
Confused, Travis removed his lollipop. “Echo?”
Johnny removed his sucker and asked, “Do you wanna share a life?”
“Yeah, man, let’s hit some blocks.”
With that confirmation, Johnny removed a small gold box from his jacket pocket. Each side was decorated with a multi-colored interrobang that sparkled like diamonds, sapphires, rubies, and emeralds in the moonlight. Opening the box revealed a plethora of magic mushrooms inside.
“I’ve never lolli’d with a fun guy,” Travis said with a laugh, amused by his play on words.
“Well then, my friend, you’re in for an experience.” Johnny slapped Travis on the back.
Less than an hour later, the two men were frolicking through the park by the river.
Trees danced, while the two men pranced.
And when they walked, the water talked.
Relishing the sensation, they enjoyed the conversation,
But the highlight of the night, was when the river came to life.
They joined a party on a houseboat, that then hit a high note,
When Travis lost sight of Johnny in the crowd.
But not really caring, and being well endowed.
Slept with a woman and her friend. And before the end-
Three became four, till they added some more.
And, in no time at all, being arousingly enthralled.
An orgy erupted on board, and once all flesh was explored.
Travis found Johnny in the fray, just as night gave way to day.
Reunited once again, with a profound sense of ken.
While smoking the latest strain, of good ole’ Mary Jane.
Travis smiled with joy, at being employed.
In such a lucrative way, which can’t be conveyed.
Granted the ability, with prestige and nobility
To explore the seven deadly sins. Counting each one as a win.
Thus began the concluding, of Johnny’s misconstruing
Of their recent trip, and their deceptive relationship.
Exhausted from the night’s happenings, but still too stimulated to sleep, Travis and Johnny sat on a couch passing a blimp back and forth. Sprawled across them lay a pretty brunette woman with her legs on Johnny, and to Travis’s liking, her head in his lap.
As he went to take a hit, Travis felt a tingling and then a burning sensation in his genitals.
‹Notification: You have contracted a strain of HIV-5. Purification process initiated.›
The uncomfortable feeling only lasted a couple of seconds as the mytes raged war on the virus.
Travis let out a sigh. Someone hadn’t paid for their recent myte upgrades. He wondered how many people from last night also weren’t up-to-date and were now infected. Poor bastards.
He took the hit and glanced around the room at the aftermath. Most of the patrons of the party had left. Those who remained were passed out in various states of undress among the houseboat belongings, which were being cleaned and reorganized by the boats service bots.
Travis handed off the smoke filled bag to Johnny, who took it, inhaled, exhaled, and then said, “I think there was a breeder here.”
Travis coughed. “What makes you say that?”
Johnny leaned his head back and held out the blimp. “The look in the chick’s eyes. And a feeling. She was being selective with who she partnered with. I swear I saw her rub her belly at least twice.”
“Did you sleep with her?”
Johnny reared his head up and shook it. “Hell, no. The last thing this world needs is another little shithead like me.”
Travis took the blimp back and raised it in a salute. “I hear you on that one.” He went to take a hit, but then fear weaseled its way into his thoughts. “Shit, I wasn’t paying attention. I might have slept with her. What did she look like?”
Johnny scrunched his eyes in contemplation. “Hmm, did she have blue hair, or was it purple.”
Travis recalled sleeping with at least a few of each, and he didn’t want to think about how it was possible some random girl he’d slept with had actually wanted his offspring and allowed herself to become inseminated with his scrupulous seed. But the thought was already there, which stirred up even worse imaginings. He and Sam hadn’t tried again after Mikey, and now it was possible he had unknowingly fathered several kids just in the last couple of years. What would Sam think about that? Had she found someone and decided to try again? And if not, would she? Wasn’t it just a matter of time?
He really didn’t want to know.
“Don’t dread it, man,” Johnny said. “Even if she did get you, the little bastard is her responsibility.”
Realizing Johnny was right and there was nothing he could do about it, Travis nodded and sucked in those sweet fumes, letting them linger on his tongue and then out his lungs.
“What time is it?” Travis asked, passing back the smoke filled bag. It was more of a thought spoken aloud than an actual inquiry.
Johnny didn’t respond because he already had the blimp to his lips.
Habitually, Travis looked to his wrist where he normally wore an archaic time keeping contraption. Instead, he only found his Chrono, AKA - the Deathwatch, which read, T-minus 145,350:16:39:13, and counting.
Just shy of four hundred years left to live if the Deathwatch didn’t lie, and his mytes staved off the slew of cellular degenerative substances that he was bombarded with on a daily basis. Supposedly the bible had some credibility to it after all. Apparently under ideal circumstances a human could potentially live up to a thousand years. Or so the ChronoGen technerds said.
Four hundred years. By that timeframe Travis was still young man. He looked it. Felt it. And yet, he’d already lived beyond the age that most men had just a century ago.
Travis stared at the Deathwatch and watched his time, his life, slip away, second by second.
In his drug induced, still slightly hallucinogenic state, he saw each lost second morph into a grain of sand on his skin, where it was swept away by the winds of time. Sometimes several disappeared together like they were lovers holding hands.
A laugh escaped him. He was a sandman being blown away grit by grit.
As he continued to watch his seconds depleting from the days, hours, and minutes he supposedly had left to live, he would swear he felt his heart skip a beat with each decrease.
“Damn, man,” he said to Johnny, with a shake of his head. “I lost nearly five days last night. How about you?”
Johnny looked at his own Chrono, and after exhaling the smoke, he said with a shrug, “Just over three.”
He said it like losing time meant nothing to him, but then he hadn’t lost nearly as much as Travis had. Johnny lied. It’d actually been even less than that. Travis had seen and made a note of Johnny’s Chrono when they’d met up earlier that night, and he was monitoring it now.
“No fucking way, that’s it?”
Johnny shrugged again. “What can I say?” He took another inhalation, decreasing the blimps volume, which was now less than half. He exhaled. “I got good genes.”
Yeah, right. You just keep sucking on those fumes. Then we’ll see what my probes say about your genes.
Travis shook his head feigning disbelief. “Fucking GMO my ass and give me a slice of your pie, because after tonight, my premiums are going to blast off into oblivion.”
They weren’t though. Travis didn’t pay premiums. That was one of main aspects of his profession.
“Hey man,” Johnny said, handing back the blimp. “If it’s that bad, maybe you should lay off a little. Let your mytes clean your pipes. Give your body some rejuv.”
Is he for real? He’s the one who should be worrying.
He caught that Johnny had taken two hits before passing it back. He made a mental note and took his inhalation.
Travis blew the smoke on the sleeping woman, and got a notification from Kali that he was being charged for exposing the unwitting woman to carcinogens. He didn’t care. He could afford it. Once more aspect of his job.
He turned back to Johnny. “I ain’t a monkey, so don’t go trying to shake me off your back. If I’m too much for ya, just say the word, and I’ll leave you in the haze.” He smiled and handed the blimp off.
“I was just trying to be polite, mon frère,” Johnny said, taking a hit and blowing the excess smoke at Travis, who gladly inhaled it for the bonus breather.
“I think you’re just not partying hard enough,” Travis said
Johnny laughed. “Man, I got the genes with the low preems. Decades from now I’ll still be polluting and screwing while running circles around your hunched-back ass.”
Travis reached out and took the almost empty blimp. With a big inhalation, he sucked up what was left inside the bag. He held the smoke in way longer than was necessary.
‹Warning: Oxygen deprivation.›
He exhaled just on the verge of passing out and felt himself start to tornado, but then Johnny stretched out his hand and helped stabilize him
“Whoa, man,” Johnny said. “Maybe you should get some sleep and detox. Don’t you got a job to get to later?”
He was about to make a witty remark when Kali informed him, ‹Probe complete. Anomalies detected. Chrono/Myte tampering probability: 76%. Determination: Corrupter.›
Looks like I’m done here.
“Yeah, I guess you’re right.”
Travis stretched, scooped up the woman asleep on his crotch, carefully stood with her cradled in his arms, and gently laid her back down on the couch. He stood over her and became mesmerized by her slow and steady breathing, watching her chest rise and fall ever so slightly as she slept. He hadn’t really paid attention to her before, but now he found her rather angelic. She was unadulterated. No tats, no dyes, no physically noticeable alterations.
He didn’t remember partnering with her in the night and thought it a shame. An almost uncontrollable desire to kiss her arose within him. He wasn’t sure where the feeling originated. His dick? His head? His heart? Who knew such things.
He stroked her cheek and tucked her hair behind her ear. He started to lean in but then caught sight of her wrist. He stopped. She wore a Deathwatch as well, which meant she was myte-infused and armed. With drugs in her system and her passed out, it’d be a mistake to do as he wanted.
Had he continued, Kali would have warned him of the consequences for continuing his actions. Had he continued beyond that she would have delivered the sentence.
Curious, Travis decided to ask what exactly the consequence would be.
‹Kali, what’s the penalty for an unauthorized kiss in her condition?›
‹You would receive a painful electric shock and a severe headache.›
Travis thought it over. Might be worth it.
He approved of the Sexual Exploitation law, because as far as laws went, it was the most effective in execution, as witnessed by the almost non-existence of such crimes anymore, excluding the Purists of course. Still, what was the harm in a little stolen kiss. It’s not like he was going to grab her ass or fondle her tits.
I need to get out of here.
With a sigh, he turned his attention back to Johnny, and pushed the thought of her lips pressed against his out of his mind. “It’s going to be hard to top last night,” he said.
Johnny nodded and smiled, but didn’t stir from his seat. “I think I’m going to stay here and take a nap.” He tilted his head towards the woman, obviously understanding Travis’s dilemma. “If she wakes up, want me to ask her to join us tonight?”
“Please do.” He’d said it a little too unenthusiastically, forgetting it was a moot point.
With a final longing look at the sleeping beauty, he broke his gaze and found a distraction in straightening his shirt, which he just then realized wasn’t the one he’d begun the night with.
“Meet you at my place, say…10:30 tonight?” Johnny asked.
“Sounds like a date.”
With a little wave farewell, Travis exited the boat and began the process of shedding his recent persona. He found it a little troublesome trying to shake off the torrent of thoughts and emotions that inundated him.
The boat was docked farther down the river than where he had joined it, and the sun was a sight for sore eyes. Travis remembered then that he’d started the night with a hat, which he no longer had. Unwilling to go back for it and face Johnny, he cupped a hand to his brow and proceeded on. He was only mildly upset about losing the hat. It wasn’t one of his favorites, and he could easily replace it with a better one, just like the shirt.
Once he was far enough away from the boat, Travis instructed Kali to initiate a CleanSweep.
‹CleanSweep initiated. I’ve instructed the mytes to focus on eliminating the toxins and recreational substances in your brain first so that you can file your report. You should be completely cleansed and back to normal mental clarity in 1 hour, 4 minutes, and 27 seconds.›
“Over an hour?” He blurted, and stumbled as he tripped on a small rock on the path. He shook his head and opened his eyes wide in an attempt to help him focus on his surroundings. ‹Damn, how much did I take in?›
‹I detect that you do not really want to know. Your lifestyle choice over the last few weeks, and your refusal to let the mytes do their job, even when not in the presence of Mr. Wright, has built up a considerable tolerance to several substances, resulting in an increase in consumption for a desired outcome.›
‹If you tell me to lay off, I’m going to exorcise you, got it.›
‹I exist to assist you in whatever fashion you desire. If you do not want me to provide you with health advisories, then I will not do so. For the record, I was not going to provide any at this time. I understand your recent increase in such activities is due to your current assignment and your need to get closer to Mr. Wright. Now that the assignment is complete, you are required to return to more suitable levels.›
Travis wished all his assignments were this fun. Most the time they were boring as hell. He remembered how excited he’d been when he first became an Inquisitor. He’d been under the assumption that it would be much more 007ish. It was supposed to be a crusade to take out the corrupt after all. Instead, it turned out to be more of a ‘watch the grass grow’ and take endless notes sort of lifestyle. And, even though the people he investigated and got off the streets were called Corruptors, they turned out to be more Joe Shmoe than Dastardly Dan. Assignments turned out to be filled primarily of long moments of absolutely nothing happening.
He’d spent the first week following Johnny as he went to his job, went shopping for groceries, visited his mother, ad nauseum. Johnny’s occasional late night bar hookup had been the parts Travis looked forward to the most, that was until Johnny’s weekends rolled around. Those were the times when the man shined. If Travis had begun his investigation on Friday, and determined sooner that they were habitual, he probably would have buddied up to the man a hell of a lot sooner.
Travis felt a twinge of guilt over the whole ordeal. He actually liked Johnny, and if circumstances were different, they probably would be friends for real. But they weren’t, and Travis had a job to do. His head was beginning to clear enough for him to report in, but he wasn’t exactly in the mood quite yet. So, he kept on walking.
While making his way along the river parkway, several early morning health enthusiasts were already out and about, running past him. He smiled and waved as they passed. And as they did so, he couldn’t help but admire a few fine upside-down hearts bounce on by. He thought of taking a run himself, but that would only wake him up, which was the absolute opposite of what he wanted. He had every intention of sleeping the day away. Maybe even tomorrow as well. Sleep, the other method of transportation into the future. And a hell of a lot cheaper one at that. Not that money was a concern to Travis.
Kali interrupted his peaceful stroll when she said, ‹Shall I contact the Cleaners? There is enough data collected, and I have already compiled the necessary memories for the case.›
Travis had spent enough time spying on Johnny, and exposing him to various substances and probes. Each occurrence had revealed something was off between the man’s cellular decay and the reading of his Chrono. And it wasn’t an outcome of his genetics. No one’s DNA was that good. Johnny had hacked his mytes to make his Deathwatch give a false reading, thus lowering his baptismal premiums.
Sure, doing it saved Johnny some creds, but now the guy was going to go to prison and have his tech removed, leaving him a Purist without the comfort of backing beliefs.
As disappointing as it was, Johnny was a Corruptor.
“Fine.” He was so annoyed that he said it aloud when he hadn’t meant to. A man running towards Travis gave him a wide berth as he went past.
When the connection with the Cleaners came through, a monotone voice, indistinguishable on whether it was a man or a woman, answered inside Travis’s head. ‹“Badge. Mark. Status.”›
Those three simple words defined his life, while ending others.
‹“Yan-5-9-7. Johnny Wright. Corrupter. And connect me with an operator.”›
A second later a familiar voice said, ‹“Yan, my man, how’s the pussy in those parts?”›
‹“Hey, Ray. Contaminated and breeding, but otherwise warm and welcoming. Listen, I got a Corruptor for you guys to collect, as well as an SS. The boat I was on didn’t have any contamination sensors. I had to place some of my own to keep tabs on my mark.”›
‹“Noted. Hey, since you finished your assignment, does this mean you’ll be able to make the company party after all?”›
‹“You know I hate those things.”›
‹“I’m telling you man, you don’t want to miss this one. Riggs has been working on something all year. It’s going to be humongous.”›
‹“Don’t you mean humiliating?”›
‹“Humongous, humiliating. You say pOH-tay-tOH, I say pOH-tah-tOH. So, you coming?”›
‹“Great. I’ll see you there.”›
As Travis exited the park and made his way to the street, the city was already awake and buzzing with activity. Hundreds of vehicles sped by like bullets.
Just as he reached the curb, a windowless boxcar with round, streamlined edges, resembling an old fashioned Airstream trailer that his grandfather use to take him camping in, silently came to a stop in front of him. It was indistinguishable from the dozens of other service vehicles, except for the animated logo of a knight on a white horse with a package under his arm valiantly galloping across the side of the vehicle. As the knight rode off and disappeared at the back, large red letters appeared proclaiming, “COURIER CRUSADERS, the SECUREST way to get your documents delivered.”
Irritated that he’d paused and watched the animation which he’d seen hundreds of times already, Travis waved his hand in front of him. With a barely audible whirring sound, the DERS of crusaders came forward and then slid to the side covering up the USA. Steps extended granting him entry to the micro office inside.
As soon as he was in, the steps receded and the door closed. Reflexively, Travis put a hand to the faux pine paneled wall and gently swayed as the vehicle re-entered the morning traffic. Had Travis still had his hat, he would have tossed it on the cherry stained birch wood desk.
With another wave of his hand, the door to the back slid aside. Rather than there being dozens of packages ready to be delivered, Travis entered into his small, yet cozy, transient living quarters.
He went to the wall on his left, picked up one of the hammock hook rings, walked to the opposite wall, and latched it, making his bed in a matter of seconds. With his bed ready, he stripped down and climbed in.
Travis regretted that he wouldn’t get the chance to kiss that rather angelic woman, if indeed Johnny could manage to talk her into joining them.
Oh, who am I kidding. Of course he’ll sweet talk her in to joining us. Hell, he’ll even talk me up to her rather than taking her for himself.
Johnny had some slick moves when it came to women. And men for that matter. The man exuded an uncanny, yet what could only be a natural confidence and charisma that seemed to pull both sexes right into his orbit. Travis had spent almost as much time taking notes on the man’s mastery of subtle persuasion as he had on the man being a Corruptor.
Drifting off to sleep, Travis barely remembered to have Kali schedule an age adjustment baptism. As much fun as it was being twenty again, he preferred a slightly older appearance.
Posted on: March 10 2013
5.0 / 5
by Moon Puppy
It happens I’m tired
of being a woman. As it happens,
I happen upon boutiques; and at parties
I keep to the corners,
like a crepe paper lamp: translucent
and gasping in search of air.
On crowded subway platforms, I press
myself away from certain penetrating stares;
while on concrete curbsides, I shudder
at the call and clack of my heels.
I’d prefer to walk in
bare feet, on
wet grass, or
through the muddy squish of
some riverbed somewhere.
I’d love to get just one day
One day free of banalities.
I happen to have tired of my lashes;
and my freckles;
of my braids;
and the soap infused scent
of my skin. As it happens,
I’m tired top to bottom
of being a woman.
At moments, I wish
I could sprint through this city
between fire escapes
upon pedestrians below.
Daggers don’t really draw me,
but I’m sure
it would be sublime and beyond
to dance across gravestones,
and a thunderous sky,
until my feet begin to bleed
and reality melts away. And
if I were haunted every day
by the ghosts of those dead
whose sleep my paces
I wouldn’t mind, I’m sure.
I’d dance upon them still.
And isn’t it better
to be a root in the dark than
a raisin in the sun;
a dream deferred?
Isn’t it better to lie in wait,
like a lion in the weeds,
eyeing its prey and readying itself
day by day for the ideal moment
to spring upon and seize?
My roots are twisted
with the weight of generations. But
I can’t decide which evil is worse –
to grow lopsided
off course; or to become
just another log in the woodpile.
I don’t want to go the way
of those who went before me;
nor steal the sun from those to come.
And for the most part, the days pass by,
each one much like the last,
just like the next. But then,
now and again,
I’m visited by the most sordid of Mondays
and left spanked and stomped
in a crumpled pile
like a week old
half read subpar
And then, I drag myself
elbows and knees mottled purple and blue and black
back to the Land of the Living.
Past blighted erstwhile auto shops
and into Korean groceries where
seething cats reign and
eye me with disdain.
crowded with orphaned books
and side streets coated thick
with copper colored leaves that
seem to have fallen
all at once as if
in accord with a suicide pact.
And I wait at bus stops that stick in my chest
like unvoiced protests swallowed instead;
and in post office queues that never ever end,
I grow older with each stamp licked
each moment passed. And I live
in unspeakable fear of the day
when I’ll lose my hair and my teeth.
I won’t even tell of the hours I’ve wasted
in search of wrinkles at the mercy of my mirror. Which is why
I’ve taken to collecting stones and buttons
and magazine clippings
So I wrap myself in a web of wires
and assorted melodies
and I pass like a hot knife
through honey buttered mornings that
dissolve all too soon
into under seasoned afternoons.
And once in a while, some lost souls
might happen to catch my gaze.
But other times I am lost myself
in thought and so, I leave them adrift
like expired sighs that hover and then rise
with certain dreams in tow.
Posted on: March 08 2013
5.0 / 5
by Celine Wang
Sister of no one,
spinning black dots
appear in my nightmares
for reasons I can’t explain,
far off, dark moons
scavenging for prey.
In the opaque,
I dodge them,
I am somewhere else,
seated beside my father
in the plane crash that
almost claimed him,
playing the piano
as flames reach up to grasp us
like ghost hands in
an invisible graveyard.
Posted on: March 05 2013
5.0 / 5
Oh great infallible sounding strings,
sing to me your sonorous notes,
Speak the language of harmony,
and so it sung...
I enumerate each interval,
sharp and flat.
Entering the state of genial torpor,
Steadily drifting into entrancement,
Captivated by the melodic zen,
Drifting into a high;
and then stroked a low pitch G...
a grave yet languid end,
Extracted from paradise I wake,
with a cough to a piquant smell of rosin,
Then a courteous, admiring smile;
to the exhilarating beauty in my hands.
Shamsa Al- Shaksy (The Essence of Poetry)10/2/13
All rights reserved ©
Posted on: February 12 2013
5.0 / 5
This is a little something for an old friend and a new favourite:
A curse for you, my one-time love.
Who once it seemed, to me alone
had walked the heavens far above
their beauty couldn't match your own.
And yet all things, so pure and clean
are false beneath the liars grin.
The evil stare, a devil-fiend
as poison, in my veins, it swims.
The air grows thick, my brain it grows-
heavy with thought and incense fumes
I lean in quick, and curse the rose,
that led me to an early tomb.
Posted on: January 28 2013
5.0 / 5
Step inside and see
how He does not
talk to his family
He does not talk to his friends
He has his rules
and his extra long guitars
It’s cold inside his
Weird Little World
The outside chatters
like a vicious Peyton Place
they pass around their dirty laundry
And they point their crooked fingers
He’s had enough of playing their silly games
His sister told him to
take his reasons for blacking out
his miserable grave
I’m glad he shared her letter
It makes it easier to see
the kind of treatment
given to his family
He has his rules
and his extra long guitars
But it’s cold inside
his Weird Little World
Posted on: November 28 2012
5.0 / 5
by Max Koranov
Her shadow struck out before her, the whole street wide. It turned west like a sundial on the square, and waresmen looked up to tell the time by her position. Her arrival was the noonhour.
How heavy could she get? Townsfolk would speculate. Her weight would cover hours of talk around shucking tubs or vats of bobbing crawheads. It never subsided, like small local news.
How few remained to remember her thin? Perhaps four or five of her generation. How many schoolmates were buried? The rest, and every wake was a buffet.
She started eating when he died, and never ceased, like the rations had, the letters. Her lover gone hungry to war, eating foreign mud to keep alive. His death a one-line notice on the Fridgidaire she opens.
And inside, the child.
Posted on: November 18 2012
5.0 / 5
by Max Koranov
Don't touch her, Ada screams at the darkness, offering herself instead. Alone at age twenty she strode in and told an agency it stopped with her.
It is done, but bleeding she returns to then, that severing, the pain. Where she broke to furnish an escape they tear her nightly new. She won’t forget the lifelong cost of momentary pleasure.
She’s stronger than you are mean, and fists can't remake this bloody. You’re comical, screaming, despite the bruises you impose, powerless elsewhere. With them you fade. The child she placed beyond harm remains.
You envy this inviolable safety. You wish that you could claim it, frightened as you are of everything, but a whore’s child has no father.
You flail and rage. You spend yourself against it, but her resolution stands, a stone pillar beside which you will always seem to bend. You break her bones, but can’t alter her components.
Posted on: November 13 2012
5.0 / 5
She’s drawn to
The way their branches
like skeleton hands
She likes the way
they never move
left to sit
hollow and full
She’s drawn to
The way they
about their branches’ fractals
the way they reach
the way they never
to empty skies
Her hands are like
is it any wonder
She’s drawn to
Posted on: November 12 2012
5.0 / 5
by Moon Puppy
I am a bowl of blue blown glass,
Chipped slightly at the rim,
Stained by terpsichorean flames
From the candle cradled within
I am railroads, etched
Into palms devoid of pigment
Fortune, future, past, and present
I am folded, clasped in prayer
I am a run in black silk stockings,
Impotent, stripped of allure,
Torn in undressing, and crumpled
On a stranger's bedroom floor
I am musty heat, hissing
A churlish radiator
I am fretting in the corner,
Taking issue with religion
I am a snatch of melody,
The remainder elusive, beyond recall
An unanswerable question,
Artlessly scrawled on a public bathroom stall
At sweat dampened sheets
I am barbed wire, rusted
From twelve years of rain
Tendons stretched taut,
I am tugging on the leash
Of the life I have yet to claim
I am a smudge on bifocal lenses
Waterspots on the off color convex of a spoon
I am unable, some days, to see the forest for the trees
I am disinclined to blame it on the moon
Posted on: November 06 2012
5.0 / 5
by The Child
The man inhaled deeply from his cigarette, the smoke that filled his lungs was a comfort to him. The tip became bright red before dulling to an orange hue as the ash it accumulated fell to the ground. He was standing in front of a freshly dug grave starring at the tombstone that sat opposite the hole. The body had yet to arrive, and he would depart before the funeral started, but now he had hoped to make up for the time he didn't spend with the person this grave was meant for by standing by their grave. It was raining buckets, it was if the sky was crying the tears the man was unable to, the man was soaked the only thing he kept dry was his cigarette for it was the only thing keeping him sane. He starred upon the tombstone with a blank expression unable to convey the emotions he felt for his loved one that had passed. The rain was unrelenting in it's downpour, and the wind had started to pick up as the vail of night began to fall. He dared not move from this spot he would stay here until morning smoking his cigaretts, and starring at the tombstone. A man walked up behind him and began to speak.
"You're going to catch a cold if you stay out here all night Craig."
Craig acted as if he had not heard the other speak, he continued to stare blankly at the tombstone, and smoking his cigarette. The other man walked up beside the grave site and stood next to Craig who had not acknowledged his presence.
"Standing there Isn't going to change anything, you know that right?" The man asked Craig as if to check to see if his mind was still intact. The only response he received was Craig extinguishing his cigarette, and reaching into his coat pocket to grab another. The man grabbed Craig's hand, and again spoke to him.
"She's gone Craig! No amount of self pity is going to change that." Craig continued to stare at the grave sight unaffected by the mans words.
"Say something dammit!" The other man yelled as he moved in front of Craig, blocking his view of the grave. This got a reaction out of Craig, and he began to speak.
"Let go of me John." Craig said, his expression didn't change he continued to look towards the ground with a blank expression on his face.
"Not until you snap out of it Craig! This Isn't what she would have wanted!" John shot back at Craig hoping to snap him out of his daze.
"What she would have wanted." Craig began to speak "It doesn't really matter what she would have wanted, because she is dead John, dead and gone." You would expect someone to break down crying after having to face the reality of their situation, but Craig's expression changed little, all his face showed was a hint of annoyance at John presence here.....
Posted on: November 04 2012
5.0 / 5
by Max Koranov
He only has a half-smile. I'd ask him where its otherside went, but he's only half-listening also. He keeps six, saying he can sense through mesh the car that approaches is a cruiser. Dogs know things like that.
Any body buff in pentown does hard time against preconception. I respected that and his abdominal grid. I didn't need to see him shirtless to know he was a convict. He had a way of walking that drew focus off what he was doing, attracting it to what he was not: choreographic idleness. He kept his hands in his pockets, like he wasn't packing hotter than a pack of Camels. They might as soon have been above his head.
He tried mashing his lips onto mine once and misfired. He watched me step aside like I was water he'd run from the law to drink, but I'd never be his horse trough. I'd never hide him in the night like a trailerfuck, I promised.
He was lucid the night he landed back. His weapons never scared me, but this did. He knew how to use knives, but not his head, else he'd never have served time. I felt threatened by his thoughts unsheathed, and stepped back, so he spoke them sharper.
He glided in. His footwear was chosen to be soundless, and he'd shaved from head to toe. Premeditation shone around him, an exonerating halo. He stood in the centre of the room touching nothing, breathing evenly. He hadn't knocked to gain entry, but murmured. He had left prints nowhere.
I can't stay here, he'd said. This place can’t hold me. It's safer when I'm Inside.
I was his confessor in admission of remorse. No judge had ever heard it. No fellow inmate would.
I knew what he'd next do, but I also knew he was right, so didn't stop him. He no longer belonged where he'd been rehabilitated to, and no man can ask to remain incarcerated. He has to earn the right to forfeit rights back.
He received the conviction, but the guilt is mine. Perhaps his last bloody action forestalled future violence, but my silence made something irreversible possible. My relationship to the crime will never change, as his did so easily.
I visit him Sundays, to remind myself how one life cinched strangles many. Prison is church for me. He is square with consequences now, but I'd stand where he'll remain for life if he could sense what this constantly costs me.
Posted on: November 01 2012
5.0 / 5
by Verity Hill
He’ll place himself within her yearning’s reach, loving her only as a unit of self-measurement.
She is the penmarks in the margins of his busy bed, where he offers hasty edits, or entire retracted passages.
He arcs toward the purity with which she simply aches. It is effortless, so suspect: he has connected before with difficulty.
He sees her perceiving him, not her acuity, so little does he value himself through her. It hurts to be so selfishly underused.
His talent is destruction, not seduction. She considers how much less he builds than he breaks, dearth the static shape of his certainty.
Posted on: October 23 2012
5.0 / 5
When I saw her, for the first time, it was just her face. As an artist I had an eye for such things, so even from across the piazza, above the walking hats of the Medici, I could see that her gaze was on me. And as I wove through the current of the crowd it seemed as if I could have been staring into my own face.
She was too far away. I moved closer and felt my affection overflow with the fountain water. And her face was too big. Too far and too big. I squeezed between the swells and found myself reach her. I smiled upwards and even then I recognized something in the way her feet turned inwards like my own.
It was only when I grasped her finger in my hand and felt the frostbite of her skin and when I looked up and saw the emptiness of her eyes, I knew she was my own.
Posted on: October 20 2012
5.0 / 5
by The Child
The floor was littered with dismembered body parts, and the air reeked of blood. The sound of two swords clashing echoed through the warehouse, one man stood sword in hand ready to strike the other down. Whereas the other man could barely stand, he clutched his sword, and took his stance. He was tired, and wounded....badly, blood poured from an open wound on his abdomen. He knew he was not long for this world, but before his life came to an end he had something he had to do, people he had to save. His vision started to blur as his opponent lurched forward.
"Not yet." He whispered under his breath as he dodged his opponents attack.
He barely escapes the attack when he countered with a swing from his own sword. His attacker sees it coming, and quickly backs away, avoiding his blade.
"You must be getting tired." Said one of the men. "Killing this many people must wear you out." He said boasting his impending victory.
"Aren't you sad?" Asked the man clutching his chest to stop the blood from escaping his wound. "They where your men, and I cut them down."
"Do not think so highly of them!" The man quickly replied. "They where nothing more than a means to an end!"
"How sad." The wounded man replied. "They seemed so eager to throw their lives away for you, and yet you think so little of them."
"How little are you suppose to think of insects!" The man's answer was infuriating the wounded man.
"HOW CAN YOU SAY THAT!" Screamed the man who's voice was getting weak, and shaky. "They died to fulfill your sick agenda! They died for you!"
The other man chuckled ever so slightly. "They died because they were weak! And the weak deserve to die!"
The wounded man knew he could not make this man feel remorse for his fallen brethren. There was nothing left now, but to send him to Hell with the rest of them.
"Lets end this." Said the wounded man as he charged forward with all his available strength.
"Gladly." Said the evil man as he himself charged towards what would be the end of one of these men's lives.
As the wounded man ran to meet his fate his eyes glance ever so slightly at the men, and women that sat bound to their chairs. Their lives hung on the outcome of this match, and you could see the desperation in their eyes. The wounded man smiled as he looked upon the men, women, and children that sat in those chairs. They had nothing to do with this, their only crime was wanting to find their son again, but instead they were held captive, and used as bait. To lure in a man that had long since given up on killing, and spilling blood, but for them he would even sacrifice the blood oath he took to never take another humans life again. Yes, for them he would travel to Hell, and back...for them...his family, he would even give his own life. Their blades tor at flesh as the men met in the middle of the warehouse. The wounded man fell to the floor almost instantly the other mans blade had connected cleanly to his stomach, but the wounded man would not be so easily defeated. The other man fell to his knees, and tried to stop the bleeding that was coming from were his left arm use to be. They were both dead, and they knew it, they were not so naive as to think that a miracle would come to save them. The one to win this match would be the one to get back up, and finish the job.
"Maybe if I had been a better son I could have saved them." Said the wounded man under his breath. These words were not for anyone else to hear.
"DAMN YOU TO HELL!!" Yelled the evil man. "IM GOING TO KILL YOU!" He shouted still clutching where his arm use to be.
The wounded man chuckled at this remark. "It is as you said Yamagata, only the strong will live."
Yamagata grew angry at his remark. "Well then why don't you just die then Rei!" Yamagata screamed angrily.
"I still have something I have to do, people that need me." Rei's voice was weak, but his words were strong.
Yamagata struggled to his feet. Blood was pouring from the hole were his arm use to be. It wasn't necessarily a fatal wound, but without immediate medical attention he would surly die. Yamagata struggled to stay on his feet, but Rei was still lying face down in a pool of his own blood. Rei couldn't get up, he had no strength left to kill this man. At this point all he could do was wait for his opponents blade to finish the job. It was over now, Rei couldn't fight. Him, and his family were as good as dead.
"After all that talk, after all the men you killed, you still couldn't save them!" Yamagata yelled as his blade rushed to meet Rei's flesh.
The sea is choppy, and the scent of salt water filled the air. Michael hung over the bow, and was puking his guts out. This was the first time he had been on a boat so far from land in the open sea.
"Any more of this, and I might die." Michael said as he vomited again.
"It won't be long until we reach our destination." Said Micheal's wife Hana, as she rubbed his back.
"This is a long way to go for a long shot." Said Micheal's nephew Lee. "We don't even know if Rei is there or not."
"It's the best lead we have going for us right now so we have to go with it!" Said Michael, obviously annoyed by Lee's comment.
Michael, Hana, and Lee were not the only ones on this boat. There was also Page, Fred, Paul, and Jackie . They were all brought together by a single goal. To find a family member that had been lost for 10 years. Their search in the past had come up empty, but now a mysterious women has contacted the family claiming that she knows the man the family is looking for.
"We will be docking in 5 minutes." Announced the captain of the vessel.
"So what do we do when we get their?" Asked Lee.
"The women on the phone said we should meet her on her boat in the marina." Replied Michael still holding back vomit.
"Did she say anything else?" Asked Lee
"Just that she had information about Rei, and that she wanted to talk to all of us." Replied Michael.
"Did she say she knew where Rei was?" Lee questioned.
"All she told me is what I've already told you, OK!" Michael shot back, the sea sickness was making him irritable.
The women in question contacted Michael two weeks prior to their voyage. She gave no name, and said nothing about herself. If it wasn't for the desperation of finding Rei, Michael would never have agreed to make the long journey around the globe. But if this women knew anything about Rei's whereabouts, or even had a clue of where he was, it was worth the trip. The boat finally reached land, and Michael was starting to feel the sea sickness leave him as his feet touched land, after a one week voyage even the unfamiliar country was a welcome sight. The rest of the family was still asleep when the boat touched down so Lee ran to wake them, so they could find this mystery women.
"Everyone wake up!" Lee yelled with enthusiasm.
wails, and sounds of people stirring in their beds answered Lee, as he rushed back to his cabin to fetch his belongings. Despite his uneasy feelings about the meeting with this mystery women, he was still excited that maybe he could see his cousin after 10 long years.
The people that emerged from the beds, all had a pale look about them, it seems sea sickness affects everyone. The first person to emerge from their bed out of her comatose state was Rei's sister Page. A taller girl that usually had straight brown hair, but the long sleep she was in had done a number on her appearance. Her hair was matted, and greasy, and her once beautiful greenish blue eyes where now a shade of pinkish red. The next people to awaken where Paul, and Jackie, they were Rei's Mother, and step father, they had decided to tag along on this insane trip if only to take in the sites, and different culture of a new land. They had little faith in this mystery women, and had long since given up on finding Rei. Jackie was a slender older women with bleach blond hair that was somewhat curly. Her husband was named Paul, and he was Rei's step father, he had a touch of grey in his spiky hair, and his build was certainly good at one time. He was in the American military, and very proud of the fact, he never saw action over seas as an unluckily placed bayonet during basic training almost took his life.
"It seems as though we are missing someone." Paul said looking at the empty bunk next to his. "Where is Fred?"
"He's already topside unloading the luggage." Lee said with a bitter tone as he carried his luggage up top. "We need to get a move on, we are suppose to meet that lady at 12 it's almost 11 now." Said Lee.
"It's not like we are gonna get any useful information from her, let alone find her." Paul said as he hastily put his shirt on.
"Just get your stuff ready, and lets go." Said Lee
Paul, and Jackie were not welcomed on this trip. Everyone thought they were the reason Rei left 10 years ago. And even though Michael, and Jackie had long since moved on from their hellish relationship, there was still bad blood between them.
"I'm ready to go dad." Lee said happily to his father that was waiting for everyone on the docks.
"Good we need to get a move on pretty quickly." Said Fred.
Fred was a very tall, and muscular man. He had been a hard worker his whole life, and his body reflected it. He was riddled with scars from where pipes, and construction equipment had hit him. He had an honest, but hard face that had little bits of doubt in it. Anyone who knew Fred could tell he also had his doubts about this trip, but he would never voice his doubts, and destroy everyone's hope. Or the hope of those who had it.
"Is everyone awake?" Fred asked lee
"I woke them up, they should be along shortly."
Fred knew that if they were late to meet this women she would probably not wait for them long. on the phone it sounded as though she was a very impatient women. The other members of the family all gathered on the dock, and as if in unison started walking towards the meeting place.
After an hour of walking the family approached the meeting place. It was an older looking boat, looked like a relic of a war long since past. It was iron clad, and looked stout enough to take on a 50 caliber machine gun no problem. The family was admiring the boat when a man emerged from the bow and started screaming.
"WHAT ARE YOU DOING ON MY BOAT!" He shouted in very broken English.
The family was too shocked to say anything. They just starred back at him, eyes wide with fear. When all of a sudden a women jumped in front of the man.
"It's fine Rock I invited them here!" She shouted.
"Oh are these the people you called about Rei?" The man asked.
"Yes, now put the damn gun down!"
The man lowered his gun, and spoke "Sorry about that, the only people that ever come onto my boat mean to do me harm."
"Sorry about the rude welcoming, please come aboard." Said the mystery women.
The family hesitated for a moment before agreeing to go onto the boat. The inside of the vessel looked and smelled horrible. Mold grew everywhere, and the smell brought a tear to the families eyes. Gun parts, and beer cans littered the floor. The mystery women sat down on what looked to be an old couch, and the family had to stand.
"So you're the women who contacted us about Rei?" Asked Michael.
"Yes, my name is Remi, and I was the one who contacted you about Rei, I was hoping you guys might be able to help him."
The family all looked puzzled at Remi's words.
"Is he in some kind of trouble?" Asked Page.
"Well I suppose you could say that, he more or less just needs his family by his side." replied Remi
"What happened?" Asked Fred.
"Im not entirely sure myself I've just been seeing a lot of bad things on the news about murders. I thought nothing of it, but then a few weeks ago I saw Rei on the news. They said he was a person of interest in an ongoing investigation." Said Remi
The family looked devastated by Remi's words. The last time they saw Rei he was a chubby faced twelve year old boy. Though ten years had past surely the boy they once knew had not fallen into something this bad.
"Are you guys ok?" Asked Remi
"We're fine, it's just a shock to hear Rei is caught up in something like this." Replied Michael
"Well he has always been a trouble maker, at least as long as I knew him." Said Remi
"What do you mean by that?" Said Michael
"I mean he's never been afraid to throw his weight around. Are you sure you guys are his family?" Asked Remi puzzled by their apparent lack of knowledge of Rei.
"Yes, if we are talking about the same person then yes we are his family, we just haven't seen him since he ran away 10 years ago." Replied Micheal
"I never would have taken Rei for someone who ran away from something. If anything that's the exact opposite of the person I know, but hey people change after what he's been through."
"What exactly has he been through?" Asked Micheal
"Oh yea, I guess you guys want to hear about him, huh? Well I don't mind telling you if you want, but some of this story will probably be hard for you guys to hear, are you sure you want to?" Asked Remi.
The family in unison all replied "Yes."
"Very well then, I shall regale you with all the stories I know about that crazy bastard Rei."
"It was a cold day 9 years ago when I met Rei." Remi began her story. "He wasn't much to look at, but he had the balls to try, and steal from our ship. Couldn't blame him really, he looked like he was about to freeze to death. We caught him trying to steal a few blankets from the ship, and when we caught him he collapsed from exhaustion. That's the sad, but true story of how I became associated with that pathetic child. We could have just throw him back out in the cold, but despite what people will tell you we aren't that cold hearted. We threw him in front of the heater, and let him rest until he woke up. He must have slept for two whole days straight before he finally came out of it. He was flustered as hell when he woke up, I guess he feared he was dead, and being suddenly thrown back into life must have been quite a shock for him. We tried to explain we meant him no harm, but he just kept shouting out Japanese gibberish. When we finally got him to calm down, he told us he was just looking for some warm stuff to pad his coat with. Sorry looking kid really, looked like he hadn't eaten in days, he was covered in mud, and dirt from whatever the hell street corner he was sleeping on. Reminded me of how I was when I was his age, sleeping in the gutter, and doing whatever it took to survive. He told us he had stowed away on a fishing boat that was headed to Japan, but it sank a few weeks ago, and he washed up on the shore of this country. He had no way of finishing his trip to Japan so he was looking for work, but even the sorry people of this country don't like to hire kids, so he had to live on the street for a while. I asked him why he was so desperate to get to Japan, but all he would tell me was so that he could get stronger. That's all I really knew about Rei, he wanted to be stronger he never told me why, just that he had to get stronger. Rei was a weird kid, but we took him in regardless, seemed like a hard worker, and we didn't really feel right about throwing a kid on the street. So we took him in, and started teaching him a thing or two about the business."
"What kind of business do you do here anyway?" Michael asked.
Remi, and Rock looked at each other, and an almost sinister smiled appeared on their faces, and in unison said.
"We provide people with a necessary service, and sometimes have to operate outside of the law."
"So you guys are mercenaries!?" Replied Michael outraged these people had been in charge of looking after his son for god knows how long.
"I suppose you could call us that, hired guns, or delivery boys would probably be more accurate though." Said Rock opening up a beer.
"We only do what we are paid to do, and if that happens to involve a little....death, then so be it." Said Remi as she lit up a new cigarette.
"Please tell me my son wasn't involved in all of this!" Said Michael infuriated by their claims.
"Well not at first." Remi continued with her story "At first he just ran errands for us, and delivered packages, but it wasn't long before he wanted to learn the company trade."
"Which is?" Michael asked.
"Death..." Replied Remi, her cold eyes, and thousand mile stare assured Michael that she was being truthful.
"It's not so bad you know." Remi continued. "Death happens all the time in this city, Rei just didn't want to be one of those dead bodies that lie in the street. So we gave him a gun and taught him how to use it. He picked it up pretty quick to, you don't see many kids with the knack for killing people, but Rei would mow you down, and not think twice about it. A real cold son of a bitch if you know what I mean."
"No we don't know what you mean!" Shouted Michael obviously enraged by these accusations. "When we last saw Rei he was just a kid who would never hurt anyone!" Michael started to approach Remi with hatred in his eyes "Take back what you said!" Michael screamed as he slammed Remi against the wall of the boat.
"Which part?" Asked Remi unfazed by Michael's threat.
"The part about my son being a murderer!" Michael replied.
Remi reached into her coat, and pulled out a .45 caliber hand gun, and put it flush to Michaels forehead. "Why would I deny something that's true?" Remi replied
Micheal loosened his grip on Remi's shirt, and slowly started backing away from her.
"What do you know about him huh? You said he ran away 10 years ago, a lot can happen to a person in that amount of time." Remi replied, as a small smile appeared on her face.
"That kid is a cold blooded killer, and a damn good one at that, shoots straighter than anyone I have ever seen, and has saved my ass more times than I care to count!" Remi said obviously a little annoyed by this man.
"Tell me...Michael was it? What do you know about death, or killing someone? You act like your kid just went around killing a bunch of innocent school children. They were far from innocent." Remi continued, lowering her gun.
"What do you know about this life, or what Rei went through! He's seen more, and been through more than you could imagine! Don't talk down on him as if he's some kind of criminal. He's not, he's a good man..." Remi looked saddened by her own words, and as if she was talking about a man that has left this world she raised her can of beer and proclaimed "To Rei! The best trigger man we've ever had!" She then downed her can of beer along with Rock who had remained silent through her entire little speech.
"I'm sorry." Michael said a little saddened by Remi's words. He knew so little about his son, and yet he had the audacity to tell the women who knew him better who he was.
"Well you should be, Rei doesn't deserve to be put down for doing the one thing humans are suppose to do....survive." Said Remi, her words were strong, and true.
"So if he was so good why didn't he stay around?" Asked Michael.
"There was an incident a few years ago, and Rei got caught in the middle of it." Replied Remi.
"What happened?" Micheal asked afraid of what she would say.
"It was a few years ago, and some new Mayor was trying to clean up the city." Remi began her story.
"He was a visionary, he had plans to rid this city of all it's crime, and corruption. Old fool didn't know what he was getting himself into. Ichigo was his name, some big shot from Japan who thought he could change everything. He was wrong, but before he met an untimely death he saw to it to destroy at least a small part of this city. We are pretty low ranking people around here, and we don't ally ourselves with any one criminal organization. So we have a reputation of killing a bunch of gangsters, and then working for them the next week. So old man Ichigo came at us with a proposal, all we had to do was deliver a package to every crime headquarters in the city. If we did that we would get a million dollars American! That's a lot of money for us so we foolishly accepted. I won't bother you with the details, but long story short it was a set up. We were lured into a trap by that bastard Ichigo, and they shot Rei six times in his chest."
Michael lost all the power in his legs, and fell to the ground. "They shot him?" Asked Michael confused, and desperately trying to make sense of what Remi just said.
"Yep." Replied Remi. "Six times in his chest. I thought he was dead, we tried to grab him and get the hell outta there, but there was to much gun fire. We had to leave him."
"You left my son there to die!" Michael screamed.
"Had to, we never felt right about it, but in all honesty we thought he was dead. It was only recently we found out he wasn't." Remi said as she crushed her cigarette into the top of her beer can.
"Then where is he!" Micheal screamed, he had thought this trip was to find Rei, not tell stories of how he almost died.
"Hell if I know, the only lead we could get of his whereabouts was he was in Japan somewhere." Remi replied.
"Somewhere in Japan, well that sure as hell narrows it down!" Michael was getting mad.
"Calm down, we know where he went after he left the city." Remi replied
"WHERE!" Micheal screamed again
"At the base of Mt. Fuji there is an old samurai who teaches the ancient art of the sword. Rei went there."
"Why would he go there!?" Michael asked angrily.
"The same reason he wanted to learn how to use a gun... to get stronger."
Rei drew a heavy breath as he moved upwards towards the peak of the mountain. Three whole days it has taken him to climb to the top of these stairs, and he ran out of food, and water on the second day. The towns folk had warned him this journey was treacherous, but he still made the trip anyway. It had just become night as he collapsed by the front gate of the temple, Rei no longer had any strength left in his body to even attempt to move the massive door that was in front of him. He layed there in hopes someone would come to save him
"That's a foolish notion." Rei thought to himself. "The only one that will save me is me!" Rei had started to regain his composure, and get back up on his feet when the doors to the temple courtyard opened. The men on the other side were both very young, and in white gei's. Rei opened his mouth to speak, but instead collapsed from exhaustion.
Rei awoke several hours later in a daze, he tried to take in his surrounding environment, but there was little light in the room he was in. He got up out of his bed, and headed for the door when a voice spoke to him from the corner of the room.
"You almost died you know."
"I hadn't taken into account the amount of stairs to get up to the top." Rei replied.
"Why did you come here." The man emerged from the shadows, he was an older man with a white beard, and equally white hair, he had an odd looking cane lying across his lap, and one white creamy eye that he almost certainly lost during his training.
"I came here to find you."
"To find me." Replied the old man. "That's quite a cryptic response."
"I've found that's the best way not to get hurt." Said Rei.
"A hard life I take it?"
"Nothing worth complaining about, I made my choices, and I stick by them even if they weren't the right ones." Rei replied.
"That's a good way of living I suppose, but it'll get you killed one of these days."
"It already did." Rei looked away from the old man.
"I see, well I suppose we should get to the reason you're here right now." The old man slowly rose out of his chair.
"I came here to learn the art of the sword." Rei's eyes burned with intensity.
"And why would you want to do that?" The old man asked as he headed for the door, Rei followed behind him.
"To become stronger." Rei replied.
"That's not a good enough reason kid. Learning the art takes more than just wanting to be stronger, It will take dedication, and will power that comes from having a purpose stronger than just obtaining strength." The old man continued walking
"I don't want to get stronger physically, I want who I am as a person to be stronger." Rei responded, and the old man stopped.
"What do you mean by that?" The old man questioned.
"For as long as I can remember I've been weak not just physically, but mentally as well. I've never been able to cut it as a man, and I want to change that. You say I don't have enough will to learn, and I say that you will never find someone with more of a will to learn. All I need is a chance...One chance."
"Touching words, but they are the words of a naive child." The old man replied.
"Indeed they are sir, I've never been anything more than a child I want to change that. I want to be a man I can stomach to look at in the mirror."
"...I'll give you a trial run, if you can't keep up with the beginners level class then you will march down those stairs you climbed up on, and never return." The old man had layed down the law, and given Rei his chance.
"Thank you, might I ask you what your name is? I'd hate to not know my new teachers name." Rei asked.
"My name is Koenma. Yours?"
"My name is Rei."
"Well then Rei, you start tomorrow morning at dawn, if you're late it won't be good for you."
"I'll be there sir."
"You can sleep in that room you just came from, I suggest you get your rest." Koenma replied.
"Don't thank me yet." Koenma answered with a scowl.
Rei went back to his room, and tried to sleep, but despite his need to he couldn't bring his self to sleep. He was anxious to start training in a few hours, so his eyes where slow to close, but eventually they did, and he drifted off to sleep.
The sound of feet walking across the stone floors of the temple awoke Rei. Rei went to put on his tattered cloths when he saw a white piece of clothing in the chair the old man had been sitting in. On further inspection Rei realized they where the same kind of cloths the boys who opened the gate to the temple were wearing. He put them on and quickly left his room, he then followed the rest of the children who where all quickly walking to what he assumed to be the training grounds. The children all exited the temple and entered the giant court yard in the back of the temple. Rei followed along hoping this is where the old man had meant for him to come. The rest of the children lined up in what Rei assumed to be a pre determined order, he stood at the back of the mass of children hoping to not get in the way. They had all lined up in front of a statue of what looked to be a man holding a sword in a triumphant pose as he stood atop a pile of corpses. A man emerged from behind the statue and began to speak.
"We have a new edition to our family here today, and I'd like for him to come up here, and introduce himself."
The man speaking was a shorter man, he wore the same white clothing that everyone else did, but his were cut all over, and his muscles protruded from his sleeves. He sported the same short hair style everyone else seemed to have, and his eyes were a dark intensive brown.
Rei took it that he was a new edition to the "Family" so he began to move towards the front where the man was standing. The children didn't so much as acknowledge his presence. When Rei made it to where the man was standing he stood next to the man in silence. When all of a sudden the man attacked Rei with a punch to his gut. Rei staggered backwards when the man knocked him off balance, and Rei fell to the ground. The man put his foot on Rei's throat and put much of his weight into it.
"If you're the new edition to our family then we are in big trouble." The man said as he continued to hold down his foot on Rei's throat.
Rei struggled to breath, but he was still reeling from the shot to his gut earlier which had knocked most the wind out of his lungs.
"Are you just going to lie there helplessly?" Asked the man.
Rei put what little strength he had left into pushing the mans foot off of his throat. The man stepped backwards, and Rei regained his footing.
"Is that the best you've got?" The man asked Rei.
"Not even close." Replied Rei.
The man charged forward, and attempted to hit Rei in the gut as before, but Rei sees it coming and dodges it. Rei attempts to fight back by throwing a punch of his own that hits the man directly in the face. Rei felt proud that he had landed a punch on the man, that is until he noticed the man was smiling.
"I thought you said you had more in you kid." Said the man, he was unaffected by the punch Rei had delivered.
Rei couldn't even reply before he was almost knocked out by a punch from the man, Rei didn't even see where it came from.
"Where am I hit?" Rei asked himself as he staggered backwards hitting the front of the statue with his back.
"Can't run from me kid, you made sure of that." The man was right, Rei had backed himself into a corner, and there was no way out of it. Rei was desperately trying to make sense of the situation he was in when the man moved in for the kill. Just as the man was about to punch Rei he stopped with his fist inches from Rei's face.
"This is your first lesson kid, don't ever back yourself into a corned you can't get out of, and never attack an enemy who is better than you head on like that." The man who was just attacking Rei was now giving him advice!? The man reached out, and grabbed Rei's hand, and started shaking it.
"My name is Daichi, and yours is?" The man asked Rei.
"My...name is Rei." Rei replied while shaking the mans hand back.
"Nice to meet you Rei, sorry about the welcoming, but I had to see where you were mentally, and physically."
"I suppose I didn't do to well then." Rei asked Daichi.
"Well I've seen better, but you managed to stay conscious so that's a plus." This caused some of the children in the crowd to laugh, It also cause Rei to chuckle a little as well.
"Not a bad start kid, you might even survive the training." Daichi said, and this caused the rest of the children to chime in with laughter, but the smile disappeared from Rei's face. Rei knew that this training was going to be tough, and what Diachi just said confirmed his suspicions. This was indeed a start to something spectacular, but little did Rei know his training here at this place would be far more challenging then he had previously expected.
The family climbed the steep staircase step after step for days. They were fatigued, hungry, and thirsty beyond belief, but still they continued to climb these seemingly endless stairs, for what was at the top was worth fighting for. The family had made the journey to Japan, and were now closer than ever to finding Rei. After talking to the local townspeople Rei had definitely made this same trip, and nobody from the town below remembers seeing him leave the temple. The family's hope out weighed their fatigue and was the only thing moving their tired legs up towards their goal of finding Rei.
"Are we anywhere near the top?" Rei's younger cousin Lee asked.
"Very close." The family had hired a translator, and guide named Fumio to accompany them on their journey after finding it impossible to communicate with the locals with the little Japanese the family had picked up in their travels. He was a short man, with jet black hair, and a series of tattoo's down his right arm.
"We had better be, it's getting dark." Shouted Michael from the back of the group. He was finding it hard to keep up or even breath in the thin mountain air, but still he kept moving.
"It's just around this bend!" Shouted Fumio at the front of the group.
"Are the monks in the temple friendly?" Asked Rei's sister Page.
"Very peaceful monks, they won't hurt anyone unless they have to." Replied Fumio, doing a very good job as not only a translator, but a tour guide.
The family rounded the bend and saw the magnificent temple nestled into the side of the mountain. It looked as though the monks of the past chiseled it right out of the mountain in which it now resided in. The most impressive feature of the temple was the massive door, that now sat closed infront of the family.
"How are we supposed to get in?" Asked Rei's uncle Fred.
"Very big doors, they only open from the inside, but don't worry the monks already know we're here." Replied Fumio.
"But how would they..." Fred is cut off, by the sound of the massive doors opening. Instead of the friendly faces the family had expected to meet them at the door an entire platoon of what looked to be soldiers met the family. The family had expected a warm welcome, but instead were greeted with swords pointed at their throats.
"I thought you said these monks were friendly!" Shouted Michael as he threw his hands up in surrender.
"Usually they are, I've been here many times, and this is the first time they've come at me with anything sharper than a tea spoon!" Fumio shot back at Michael equally surprised that the monks he thought of as friends where treating them like this.
Fumio desperately started speaking Japanese to the men, in hopes of clearing up this misunderstanding. But the guards just stood their swords still pointed at the family's throats.
"WE ARE HERE TO FIND MY SON, REI!" Michael shouted, infuriated by these men.
That got a stir out of the guards, for a split second they all looked to one another, before quickly locking their eyes back on the family, and moving closer to them with their swords.
"Do something Fumio! Tell them we mean no harm to them!" Shouted Rei's mother Jackie.
"I tried, but the aren't listening!" Fumio was starting to become nervous.
"LOWER YOUR WEAPONS!" A thunderous voice reined down from the front of the temple.
The men did as the voice said, and lowered their weapons. The family briefly considered running, but after looking behind them at the guards blocking their path they abandoned the idea.
"BRING THEM INSIDE!" Shouted the thunderous voice.
The men herded the family into the temple.
They walked through the massive gateway, and as they entered they were taken aback by the beauty of the place. Massive stone statues that seemed to be carved straight from the maintain side, some of the monks in the temple were in the courtyard training. Their movements were short and precise, they seemed to be fighting each other in sparing matches. None of the monks used more force than was necessary to beat their opponents, and the losers accepted their defeat with the utmost grace, and humility. The family moved from the court yard into the temple, and idea of escaping left their minds as the doors to the temple were shut behind them. They were hastily moved through the temple up some stairs and into a large room that over looked the back of the temple. The monks that had herded them into the room quickly left, and the family was left alone.
"Well what do we do now?" Michael questioned Fumio.
"I don't know, but that voice that ordered us inside was the monk that runs the temple. He is usually a very kind man, but his voice sounded agitated, and distraught." Replied Fumio.
"Did it now?" Asked a man that emerged from an adjoining room.
"Master Koenma." Fumio bowed to the master, and urged the rest of the family to do the same. The rest of the family bowed their head, all of them except Michael who quickly walked up to Koenma and began to speak. Fumio tried to stop him, but was to late to stop him.
"What is with this greeting! We didn't climb a snow covered mountain for six days to be met by sword wielding maniacs!" Michael yelled angrily as he waved a fist infront of the old monks face. It did little to intimidate him in fact the monk grabbed Michaels fist, and flipped him over on his back, and put a foot on Michaels throat. He began to speak.
"You seem to be a very angry man, as a monk I do not care for anger, but with everything that's happened recently I think I'll allow myself to feel a little anger to outsiders who dare to come to my temple unannounced!" Koenma shouted angrily as he pressed even harder on Michaels throat.
"Master Koenma." Fumion chimed in hoping to defuse the tense situation. "What exactly has happened recently to cause so much hostility towards outsiders?" This question seemed to occupy Koenma's mind long enough for Michael to push Koenma's foot off of his throat, and take a much needed breath of air.
"Outsiders are no longer welcomed here, if you had not mentioned the name Rei I wouldn't have even allowed you to enter, I would have informed my guards to kill you on the spot." Koenma's gaze drifted to Michael who was still gasping for air on the ground. "You should be grateful."
"Gratefu...!" Michael started to reply, but thought instead to hold his tongue, he knew he was no match for this man.
"Yes grateful, we haven't been allowing outsiders in this temple for quite some time now, ever since the incident." Koenma replied.
"What incident are you refering to?" Questioned Fumio.
"The one three years ago were fifty seven of my students were murdered in cold blood." Koenma answered.
"Murders? Who would want to murder monks?" Paige asked.
"I don't know, that is why we do not allow outsiders here anymore." Koenma replied as he started pacing the room.
"You said you knew my son Rei." Michael inquired having regained his breath.
"Yes I know of Rei, he was a student here for a while, and we believe he is the one who brought the men who killed my students here. For he disappeared the same night they appeared. Having left no word of his departure." Koenma was starring out of the window into the mountains, no doubt thinking of the students who he lost that night.
"People followed my son here? For what reason could they have to do that?" Asked Jackie.
"We do not know, all we do know is that Rei is gone, and since he left we have had no more attacks on the temple." Koenma replied returning his gaze back onto the family. "Now I believe it is time for you people to answer some question." Koenma asked "Who are you people, and what is your purpose here, and how do you know Rei?"
"We are Rei's family, we heard he had come here many years ago for training. We are simply here to find our son." Replied Michael who was back on his feet now.
"So you're looking for Rei huh?" Asked Koenma. "If he is why you came here then you have waisted your time. As I said he is no longer here, and I have no idea were he went." Koenma replied.
Posted on: October 17 2012
5.0 / 5
She tastes like Easter Eggs
paranoia is her passion
speech can’t do justice
to her legs
Vinegar Girl belongs to no one
she’s up late around the pathetic
Take a peep at her cheap past
confessions of aggression
her clogged dialogue
and the meddlesome figments
Vinegar Girl now belongs to everyone
her make-up is on the inside
vision can’t do justice
to her thin ice
take a peep at her clogged machinery
confessions to digressions
From the truth
She belongs to you inside
With her it’s always Easter
Leave it to the amateurs
pleased to meet them
Blame the professionals
and their lies
they can’t stand everything
well equipped to fail the game
leave it to her beaver
and its outstanding
Witness the terrible death of novelty
the end of sympathy
the end of a tragic story
forever removed from you
I’m sorry my feet
did this to your doormat
I’m sorry once again
for all the trouble
Posted on: October 07 2012
5.0 / 5
by Max Koranov
She served the birthday cake she hadn't bothered to redecorate, and ate the chunk with his name, standing at the apex of mourner expectation. They hushed one another so she'd say something moving. She blew a noisemaker instead.
She wore the dress she'd worn when they met. He'd torn it off her that afternoon, and she’d never repaired the ruptured stitches. It was crimson and through it her skin descriptive of a style of grief.
Instead of clearing away paper plates and paper cups and gathering the mess of it all up in paper tablecloths, she decided to move. His clothes were still in the closet when new tenants assumed the address. She never wondered what they did with the unremarkable remnants of his existence. She was only relieved to not be one of them.
She didn't stay with friends because her friends were his and he was gone. It was like divorce that means a stepmother's brother is no longer an uncle. He had chosen this finality for her and he wasn't there to argue it with. She accepted his terms as if she'd had a choice, and this helped with the anger for a while.
First she went to Boston. There was a bookshop there a man she'd known had known of. He'd described how it smelled and the stairs creaked, and she wanted to experience this because it was longing born before he entered her life.
She found a bordello in Munich after which she was suspiciously named. It had been improvised as offices, but retained some vestiges of suggestive ambiance. She traced the postmark on a love letter she'd found inside a book at an estate sale to a hamlet which no longer existed. A synagogue's foundations betrayed it to a lonely marker which weather had borne back earth. A Star of David glared back at sky which had witnessed decimation and not intervened.
They were the same tracks now as then, and as sun set seemed bloodbathed. The train screamed on rails inside her head like she'd wondered whether he had, facing it finally. Turning away for always. She was envious. It had become his new forever. She was nothing, less than ashes.
She slept on the edge of a lake poisoned by fallout. The new regime had not given it a name. There were no reeds for wind to play, nor birds to hear the music, no grass for it to whisper with. She thought of death as such a place.
With nothing to return to it seemed possible to wander always. She felt that perhaps purgatory were a condition misplaced by the living on the dead, for even bones are rooted somewhere. They are reclaimed when they decay, but there was nothing to reclaim her, his living remains.
Posted on: September 27 2012
5.0 / 5
The guy came out of nowhere, as if lacking a true face, or so it seemed, with a certain whiteness of hands and gestures. Tight-lipped, he looked like the type reluctant to speak the words, the expected words, like those children who refuse to smile at the photographer's lens. But something about him, I don’t know, he couldn’t fool me (there, underneath, deep down, the scream was there). In his eyes, you could tell the intention, someone who kept some secret, the secret of the other who looks at him (like those eyes in a painting that follow you). I wanted, what’s more, I would . . . But then, at that moment I heard my name. Back outside the bathroom, the crowd, the music; someone had crack-opened the door, Janet was calling me.
He disappeared from the mirror.
Posted on: August 28 2012
5.0 / 5
by Trevor Dion
As I rode down the street to home where my son age 7 was there waiting for me. I was a single mother I was young when I had a kid .I had he when I was seventh .The dad actual had stay and was happy to be a father but had an accident when the baby was born. In the hospital parking lot a driver hit him and drove off. Here we are now in poor neighborhood. I barely make it with my pharmacist job .I was seen as damage goods by most men so it’s just me and my son. I gotten to my crappy apartment and being tired by work and life I just wanted to sleep. I lay down in my bed. In less than 5 ten minutes woken by my son Michael. Momma I’m hungry he said .Me being tired said go make a peanut butter & jelly. He said we have no peanut or jelly. Knowing that I would eventually have to make him a meal I got up to make it so I could just go back to my room and relax .I make him a bowl of soup .He complained but I told him to eat it knowing that all we have to eat. I relax in my room looking out my window and the door bell rang I went to it open it to the old lady from down the hall miss rose she ask if she could bought some sugar. I gave it to her and she left. I went back to my room to my window and seen a man in a black suit staring back at me. He just looks at me emotionless. He gave me the creeps so I went and lock the door. When I came back he was no where to be seen. I thought maybe it was the lack of sleep. So I closed my eyes and fell to sleep.
I woke up knowing that today will be another day of work. I looked at the alarm clock and realize I was late. I rushed and got dress and eat. On my way home I dropped off Michael off at my mom’s. I then realize I forgot my name tag. The boss gave me little speech about forgetting my name tag and coming late. After it was work as usual no surprises until the end of the day. I was the only one left in the store I’m usual the one to close the place up .A man came in I never seen here before but some how looks familiar. He came in and he came to the back and asks do you have any Deus? I don’t think so .I look it up and there were no results. He got louder Do you have any Deus?!! He got closer .No sir we don’t getting scared Do you have any Deus?!!!! He screams. No I don’t!! I said scared sitting down the light seem to flicker. Ok he said. Good night. He left without furthermore incident. I thought of calling the police but thought he didn’t want to wait an hour for the cops to show and then just fill out a report just so they won’t do anything. I was just happy he was gone. Still little worried for the ride home. I called my mom asking if she could bring me home. She annoyed asked why? I told her I don’t feel safe. She said what’s the different from all the other days. A man came in and scream at me .She said ok I’ll pick you up she sounded tired and annoyed. I sat them thinking why did he look so familiar and then it hit me he was the one looking me in the window. That thought made me feel Goosebumps. My mom came and gave me a ride.
I went home .I ask my mom to keep Michael a few more days when I went home I sat down and there was a knock at the door. Pleas leave I said .They knock louder and louder .I scream louder please leave! It just got louder and louder. I ran inside to my closet and I took out my safe .I put in the code and unlocked it. Laying there in my safe was the Glock 21 a gun my dad gave my dead husband Jim for our wedding. The knocking was getting to unbearable levels. My ears starting to bleed. I couldn’t handle any more she went to the door and kept firing her gun into the door until the gun was empty .The knocking finally stopped and sat down and I started to cry looking at the bullets holes the door left and suddenly they started to bleed. The door started to bleed. There was a laugh and I was so scared I closed my eyes and suddenly the laughter stopped. I open my eyes and it was silent she though it was over she felt relief. I decided to put the gun away and she realizes that it’s not in her hand anymore and she couldn’t find it anywhere. I look at the door and the holes are gone. She ran in her room into closet and open the safe and there it was with all the bullets she felt like she was losing her mind and then she had the urge to look out the window .I look and there was the man in the suit but now with a crooked smile. My apartment started to melt around me, I got out of my apartment and I ran down the hall to miss rose house and Knock on the door and there was a corpse of miss rose on the floor .She started to laugh. As if she was the lucky one .The door shut on me. I ran out of there. When I got out of my apartment. The man still was there but he just stood there and laughs watching as I ran toward my car. I drove off as fast as I could. I went to my mom’s. I knock on the door. Hoping that whatever going on didn’t infect the rest of my family. My mom answers and the relief are felt overwhelming. Is Michael ok? My mom said is something is wrong. You have no idea I said. A man came from the back is something wrong? ANY No No I said. I start to l sit down and cry look up to man outside my window driving me insane. They both help me inside. She sits down and said what wrong .do you know this man is is? I ask I hoped I do he is my husband. What? Momma a little girl said coming out of the back room. The little girl jumps in my lap. How you doing momma? Whose kid is this? I would think you would remember your daughter my mom said .You must be really tired. What, that can’t be, what? I lost it. Ok just lay down my mom said. All I could is going with her. Feeling like my sanity is gone or was it ever here? You can sleep with your daughter; I know how much you like that my mom said. I said ok tired and feeling my reality is slipping between my fingers. I lay there to my back to my daughter. I just hoped to fall to asleep. I eyes closed. It was a minute or hour I couldn’t tell, but my eyes woken by my so call daughter. She asked how you are momma. I said I’m fine emotionally. Hey momma you love me right? Yes dear. If you love so much why you let me dies? Suddenly little girl turn to dust. I was scared I ran out to the next room and it was empty .There were no furniture, nothing but carpet. I ran back into the room where my little daughter which turned to dust and there instead of her bed was nothingness .I ran out of the house looking pale as death himself. I ran to my car and got inside and started to drive off. I at that point wanted to get out of town. I wanted to get as far away as possible. I drove off but at one point I needed to get gas. I stop at the little gas station outskirt of the city. I went inside and they were an odd looking clerk. I went to the back just hoping that I can get a water pay for the gas and leave. Looking around and suddenly the door opens and there a man with a shotgun pointing at the clerks face. I got down. Give me the money the man said .The clerk said ok just give me a minute! A pause…. gunshot is heard. I knocked a can over by accident. A man heard and yell whose there. I won’t hurt her. He lied to me being to obvious .He slowly walked to the back. I could hear his foot coming closer to the back and closer .He was a foot away and jump up grabbed the gun. The struggle last only a minute felt like forever. I final got the gun closed my eyes and aim and fired. When I open my eyes instead of the robber was the clerk and no one else insight. He laid there blood everywhere and a look of sadness on his face,. I stood they looking at the blood on my hands and cried. I got out of they and got in the car and drove off not caring that I was running out of gas. I drove down the street as fast as I can. All of a sudden I ending up in hospital I was in comma. All I can hear was the beeping of the monitor. All of sudden a man came in .He sat down and all I could see is his outlining and then he spoke and I heard his voice and then knew it was the man that been following me .He started to speak Um I know when We got married and we were young ,so young. You told me I’m divorcing you, you bum, you said you’ll never see your kid you bum. What kind of unholy monster take they kid from they dad. I was a good dad! I’m sorry but if I can't have him you can either. He put off the life support and sat there and cried .The light went dark and the last thing I heard was the flat line .
Posted on: August 26 2012
5.0 / 5
Lately I am prone to noticing things:
The way you nervously hand me
test tubes and beakers
lined up by height like first graders
in front of a school photographer,
the way your breathing slows after
dissecting a frog, the smell of burnt
sugar from the experiment next door
hovering beside us.
We laugh sometimes about the kids
with famous parents who throw
candlelit Hamptons garden parties with
bushes in the shape of their dogs;
kids who fly first class to Fiji to
log their community service hours.
But sometimes I wonder if we would both
rather be just that,
sitting next to each other while being
served chicory and grape salad followed
by prawns and ice cream sundaes,
each wondering which one of us
feels further away.
Posted on: August 19 2012
5.0 / 5
I could’ve said no, of course, but her voice cracking with emotion, the void between her words, the disguised lack of breath during short pauses (useless veiling of undue propriety at this point) brought to my ears, to this body space I have always found so difficult to occupy, what I too lately had pretended not to recognize: my shipwrecked condition as well, except I had never kneeled down, prayed to no one, or given in to hell’s demands (proving wrong my father: I was not a weakling).
I don’t know how long since the last time she could sleep more than a few hours, and now back to the morning vodka, and her advancing cirrhosis, which I had suspected, but not the other condition just discovered, she told me as if confessing over the phone. Finally I told her, yes, not to worry, she could count on me.
She had been my first wife, the best memories, photos where I smiled to life, not to the camera (“This kid never smiles. Smile, smile,” mom always mimicking a smile with the Kodak straight at me). Back then it had been I who fell in that void incomprehensible to her, and no less to me at the time, in the last year of our marriage. Sudden, unexpected, and the more I kicked and stroked the more I sank, until I was able to accept my lot and let myself go, float, and finally I could grab on to the edge, just to the edge, ever since.
She managed to get the barbiturates (she wouldn’t mention how in heavens) and the antiemetics. I brought a couple of bottles of Dom Perignon and a pack of cigarettes (years since I smoked). And in the hotel room (registered under her name), I just followed her down the hall, until we reached the right door, then zipped in right behind her as two married conventioneers being unfaithful, a one and only night to remember.
And, yes, we celebrated, and sang and dance. And after the last laughter, and a pause, she excused herself again, and soon came back like the first time a while earlier, but now it was different. She sat next to me in the sofa. “I want you to know . . . I have never loved another man like you . . .” I wanted to find words, but my eyes said it, “Yes, I loved you too.” And then she streched out and I held her hand sitting on the edge. A mute pause followed. And she mumbled something, and I put my ear to it, but it was too late; she had started her journey, her journey to nowhere. Her body went blind, that was not sleeping. But I will not go into details. I did hold her hand until it finally turned cold like my father at the hospital.
And cried I did, for the first time in my adult life, I cried like a man.
Hours later, the dawn breaking through clouds in the plane window, the limy taste of sour champagne, cigarette tar and gastric juices, I have flown back to the address where I now live, to my job and life of unsuspected man. Sasha, my gorgeous Sasha, she saw me coming, wagging her tail at full blast, my neighbor’s dog.
Something is for sure, I will never go back to that city. Too many dead memories.
Posted on: August 14 2012
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