Monday, October 26, 2009
Wiping the trickling beads of sweat with the back of an already moist hand, forced to gaze up there at that big thing losing itself. Unexplainably. And not without the reticulate sprawling across the swaddling blue of the city’s midday sky, falling apart. I didn’t know what to think at the gargantuan tree blatantly crumbling, dismantling in front of me. The synapses running across my wet brain were desperately searching all plausible outlets for some sort of reason. But could find none.
The hulking base of the tree, a seasoned oak of some sort, had split in perpendicular lines from the ground up. The hugest limb had fallen onto the sidewalk, blocked it entirely. It was Rick Leedy’s favorite branch. The dark bark on the ends had given way to the much lighter wood showing from the inside, like the white stuffing spilling out from a burst seam of a teddy bear. This tree was dying and I was watching not only the physical characteristics deteriorate, but could perceive its essence ebbing away, too. There were quiet sobs contained in the leaves’ rustling, directly in time with the slow cadence of death’s overtaking.
Soon I could take no more and turned to go inside. The low moan of the screen door. I was dripping with sweat, so I immediately made my way to the kitchen and ran some water over a sullied rag and generously dowsed my face with it, eyes closed in the minute rapture of the moment.
It didn’t seem that out of place, the tree’s inexplicable and unmitigated demise, not after the couple days that I had had, you know. I opened the refrigerator door, I was breathing loudly, and was met with a cloud of cool fog from inside. It dissipated around my hand as I reached in, opened a chilled beer with granules of ice careening down the sides. Plopped myself down on the orange itchy couch, stared at the green glass bottle. I was in
Mind blistering, feeling hotter than ever. Eyes darting from point to point, no focus no point of reference determined. I was standing in the longest line, getting chest rubbed down and dick jacked up by this young girl with eyes bigger than a squid’s. Prettier, too. She was chewing gum, just like you’d expect, rubbing in a circle with one hand, tugging vertically with the other. I could smell the citrus emulating from the gum, fake like a car air-freshener. The jelly she was rubbing into my pectorals made them this bright orange putrid color, like the itchy couch. She made occasional popping sounds with the gum, like spoons clicking, but didn’t speak. I didn’t speak, either. A lot of the other guys standing in the gigantic line, they were stammering away. Nervous, bashful, pompous, that and more. All sweaty. I got pissed off. Just shut up, you know? They all had girls, too. Pretty girls. Pretty like lined dolls in a tiny kid’s room. I twirled my head around ballerina style and saw that some of them had coaxed their girls into suckin’ them as we waited. I wasn’t going to try that, though the urge to have my beast buried in something warmer than this squid girl’s clammy hand was very hard to counter. Seeing all of that kind of made me sick; made me think I might have come to the wrong place. They had this blazing guitar music playing over the giant PA speakers, and normally I like blazing guitar music, you know, but not something like this slop. It was all squealy-noted and the drums had tons of reverb on them. Fuck that.
The orange bodypaint mixed with that music made my stomach start to bubble up. Felt a little queasy, so I gently suggested to my girl that I was coated enough.
“They will tell us when they want us to stop,” she said. “I gotta keep going till then.”
“I guess you gotta do what they tell you to do,” I said. I ran a hand across my lips to catch any spittle, then ran it through my hair. “I’m just startin’ to, uh, feel kinda not good.” She smiled up at me, chewing.
She was chewing, still rubbing, still jerking. Some time passed. I could tell she didn’t mind the silence, but I did. The bubbles were building. I wasn’t accustomed to these things, it was my first one. I didn’t know how it worked. So, being ignorant, because that’s what I was to these things, I faltered:
“What’s your name?”
She just stared, chewed, rubbed, jerked. Stopped all of them when she heard my question. Clicked her teeth like she clicked the gum.
“Desire.” Started all of them again.
“No, your real name.”
“Oh, one letter. I’m John,” I said. Shouldn’t have, though. Felt ashamed for the first time there, even though I wasn’t wearing any clothes.
“Is that your real name?” Sad smile.
“No,” I said, “But I guess you don’t use your real names for these things anyway. I gotta think of a new name.” She forced a chuckle faker than the tits on the girl blowing the guy behind me.
She stopped what she was doing. “They say you use your middle name, and the street name from where you grew up.” I tried to visualize it in my head.
“Ryan Coventry.” I showed her some teeth.
“Not bad,” she said. Her chest rubbing tempo increased. So did her jerking. Torso began to tighten up.
“Easy,” I said, “she’s not even out here, yet. I’m gonna blow up if you keep it up like that.” She chuckled again, but this time it was something else. I felt her drape herself in the blanket of humanity for the first time. She turned the color of a piece of uncooked chicken.
“That’s normally something that I would never criticize someone about. I’m just saying that you are really good at your job.” Her humanizing laugh had opened this iron gate to her real appearance. Big bug eyes, big blonde hair, big caked-on make up. Trashy. Not very far from straight ugly. I didn’t care. It had been a long time since a woman looked at me in that sultry way. It took what the little blood that remained in my head and flushed it from there completely. Her eyes bulged and dripped with some nectar that I found to be especially nourishing in the moment, igniting my usual proclivity for any attentive creature. Or it could have been the fact that I was being manually stimulated to an orgasm by her preening hand. I felt some sort of affinity for her, a primordial feeling I was really used to by now. Thought I was falling in love again. Going through the motions, at least. “Just be delicate,” I said.
The room was cavernous, looked like it was once used as an airplane hanger of some sort. There were yellow jibberish letters stenciled across a couple of the unkempt walls. Enormous lights mounted across the ceiling, looked like searchlights. Emitting loudly halogen fuzz and drenching the place in it. I hadn’t ever been anywhere where they made pictures before, but I had never imagined it was in places like this. I had a feeling it usually wasn’t. It was hard getting passed the smell of that jelly being rubbed into me, but once I did, there was a definite lingering odor of dust and mildew and fine sand wafting throughout the place. I thought about all of that being stuck in the tiny spaces between my teeth. Thought about all of the other oily bodies around me inside my own, sliding around, through my intestines, skating my bones. The contemplation caused a sputtering cough to churn in my stomach. Felt it bubbling up.
She broke my foray into revulsion: “Well, there’s gotta be something special about you, John, you’re number one. You know every guy here wants to be number one. How’d you pull something like that off, being an unknown and all?” I did not like that she had used my name.
“Unknown? I’m fuckin' known. Just not down here.”
“An amateur, I mean.” She was scared I was mad. Her eyes showed it. Her chewing slowed. Her ruby lips curled upward fearfully. She kissed the tip of it, let a thin strand of saliva hang off the head. My shoulders arched with the natural rapture. There I was. Being fluffed. There I fucking was. Number one in the
Thursday, October 22, 2009
I decided to write you a note
A story told in plain speech
Without too many words,
or big ones
That have too many syllables
It’s a story for the people;
I want its message to ring through the streets
To resonate in the hall,
Pollinate the ear drums
It’s a story by the people;
Chiseled from bone and steel
Dripping with sweat,
Coughing with black lungs,
Hiding its pride like a bruise
Birthed in the same dried up garden,
From the same prickly cactus
Same angry, trampled hole in the ground
Oh, our mother.
Is she not at the heart of all our great tragedies?
Harmonizing over them like a wailing Siren
She is blowing like the wind,
She is picking fruit off the tree,
She is changing the seasons,
She is dying the leaves.
She is moaning a cautionary tale –
She is arranging the oak leaves,
Forming constellations of our fates outside her cave
It tells of shattered glass
Of sea-foamed shores swallowing entire cities
Of bruised buildings collapsing at their heels
Toppling like a house of cards
Ill placed by the Master Magician
Of slithering serpents sneaking through gates
Tempting young virgins with ripe fruits
They tell of people becoming pansies for the picking
No longer fit to survive
No longer quick as the carpenter
We are lined up
To be pinned down
And there we rest
Like ill-fated butterflies
Our perfect patterns resorted to collecting dust and awkward glances
Pressed behind glass
Framed on the wall
Drowning in the waters
We swim against the current
Just to survive
Our scaly, limp bodies flailing wildly in the foaming rapids
But her call falls to deaf ears
As we shuffle along, dirtying our hands
Working for a clock that bends, but never breaks
Working for a man that grins, but has no face
For the wind has blown away her leaves
And the pattern is lost
That old hag never gave us anything but a spider web to get tangled in
A jar to get caught in
A river to drown in
Constantly wanting and needing the love, appreciation, and attention of the living.
Acting as if his treacherous and tragic past didn't lead to his insanity. Believing fake smiles, and facade relationships and scenes kept him sane.
The world is the way you see it after all.
He always believed he would never let himself be a victim again, no matter what it took.
Never realizing the deterioration of himself.
He was happy for a while. As much as he allowed himself to believe.
He got sick the day he realized it wasn't a life he planned on living. The day he realized it all wasn't real, and no matter how hard he fought, it was all fucked.
He tried to fight the sickness and put up with ridiculous and horrible behavior from others. Still believing in love and friendship.
It seemed every time he tried for the littlest bit of positivity, laughter, or fun; misery followed ten fold.
He knew he was miserable and sick, but he wasn't ready to give up.
He enjoyed the little things. The lack of television, the music, the stories, the feeling of being part of something so much bigger.
He put up with lies and worries unimaginable. And never understood how he was the only one to see it.
He held onto the faith. Deep down, it was this beautiful piece of art that just needed love and support and friendship. Things only he truly understood.
Something he will always believe, no matter what was done.
He kept getting sicker.
Laughing in his head how he became the logical, reasonable, responsible, mature one after so many years.
Still not given a chance by others. Still caged in this box, that no one would let him out of, or even take the time to glance in.
He changed, He wasn’t 19 anymore with an intense feeling to kill himself and that the world would be better off if he did so.
One winter week, when everything was positive, and he felt so loved by so many, the world came crashing.
It didn't end for weeks. Each week gave news of some other devastating tear at his heart and his belief in the world.
All of his hard work to never be who he used to be, all of his change and knowledge and love, simply didn't matter.
He became sicker.
No test or doctor or piles of medications could cure him.
So He ran.
He was reborn. He was himself, and didn't have to fake anything.
He could hurt and smile, and laugh and people loved him the same and he finally loved himself.
Hi realized life is much more than an elitist bunch of people and the belief that everyone is better than he ever would be.
The problem with running is that you eventually have to come back to where you ran from.
He got pulled back into hell. He was stronger, but not strong enough.
He has been bed ridden for a month now.
Feeling the murky sickness creep its way back through his veins, in his stomach, and covering his heart.
He doesn't understand the negativity, the loneliness, the pain, the silence, the judgment and the betrayal.
He can't move on here. He doesn’t even know if he wants to.
Through what he believed was misery, it was those little things that kept him well. It was the faith and belief, and the amazing amount of love he has always been able to share with the world. The one quality he has always had more than enough of.
He's friendly, nice and understanding. Empathetic. He doesn't judge. He's incapable of hate. He dies a little with each and every negative aspect of the world and human society.
So here he is again. Sick, deteriorating, Stuck.
Watching everyone acting as if he never existed.
Something needs done.
He wants to breathe again. To feel true laughter, happiness, and love. To get rid of all of the anxiety, pain and blackness.
He wants to get better, to not be sick anymore, to start over and be born again.
But how? Is this even possible? Or is it too late?
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
He realized that college was just a task. It was something necessary to complete in order to function at the professional level. Not to say it’s necessary to get a college degree in order to function or be a part of society, but rather a necessity for him.
So there he sat, wanting to scream, “I’ve graduated world! I’m ready to conquer you!” Isn’t this what the teachers told us they were preparing everyone for from the first day we all started? Nick felt that all those teachers never really prepared him for this. Never prepared him for disappointment; for consolidation of student loans, for the economic collapse, for the industry he wanted to enter to be completely dying.
But there Nick sat, still having to face the world and all these situations, through no choice of his own. So perhaps, Nick thought, there is a lesson to be learned in this after all. You can try all you want, you can work hard and prepare properly and say your prayers and double knot your shoes and look both ways before you cross the street, but sometimes it just doesn’t fucking matter. Sometimes, you just get hit by an 18-wheeler going 70 miles per hour, regardless. However, instead of being gracious and wiping out an entire generation of jaded cynical self absorbed tweeters it seemed to paralyze everyone into a zombie-like state of post-graduate depression where everyone was wandering around some unoccupied space between hometowns and college towns, ingesting substances and drinking things that gradually numb the pain of getting mauled by an 18-wheeler that was completely out of their control. We all looked both ways, Nick thought, well…some of them did.
Nick blamed it on the 90s, being raised as part of the uber-optimistic Clinton era, the days when kids played sports and at the end of the game “everyone won”…the days that everyone displayed their 5th place ribbons proudly.
And then everyone became teenagers and would turn on the TV and see children getting BMW’s for the 16th birthdays from their parents and a hundred of their “closest” friends, dry humping like rabid farm animals all on the TV network’s dollar, ah yes…now this is what the real world is like! This is what the generation was bred to strive for. These were the rich, the powerful, the Gatsby’s, if you will. This is why, Nick thought, I went to college.
These dark and upsetting thoughts littered Nick’s brain like a car crash you want to turn away from but can’t on the news. He knew he wanted something better, but even in these lowly moments Nick knew he could deal with it. Jackie, however, couldn’t deal with the pressure anymore. He didn’t even know why Jackie’s name crossed his mind at this hour, especially given the status of things between them now, but he couldn’t help but feel moved and empathetic towards her. Reality had been slowly getting harder and harder for them all to deal with, but for Jackie, it was becoming a task difficult to wake up in the morning for. Her family was falling apart and her inability to get a job was all mounting into a rising tide that was becoming harder and harder to swim against. He tried shaking it out of his head, but Jackie stuck.
Nick observed the similarities between their situation, both longing for the same thing, both dealing with personal problems that were mounting to a unfathomable height, however the same post-graduate depression that ate away at Jackie day and night seemed to wash over Nick with a more tranquil, soothing numbness. He was angry and sad, sure, but the booze and drugs did make it go away. It seemed so logical.
Monday, October 19, 2009
In the late eighteenth century, English nobleman Sir William Pultney, after having just made a gigantic land purchase in the newly founded
Some days I wake up and I believe that my face may be fading. I've seen it happen here before. Someone stays long enough, and their face just up and dissapears, leaving nothing but blank space, as if it evaporates from its proper place. A lot of times we're sent from here back to the newer, much shorter lived purgatory, with new faces, new bodies, and whatnot. We spend a spell there, but it's always the same. Victims of their own purgatory always die young on earth, and return to our period of stasis.
Sometimes I wonder if this is hell.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
in pain, we feel distinguished. something keeps biting my neck.
please i cannot look at every man like you can.
please do not look at me old, or young man.
i feel it is too much.
that i'm afraid of love because i fear that really no one feels a thing at all
and i'll still be small and stuck
there was no end, no dream expanded into woods and truth and dust.
please understand, no one has been everywhere.
don't believe what they say about stopping and sitting and how.........
or maybe we should be sedated.
maybe we should pack all our things up until not another can see one other
thing about someone else.
stay close, for closenesses sake, if not mine and if not yours.
but there are attitudes more famous.
and i don't know about those because they don't fit into my bones
you do not feel forgiven,
neither do i.
do i come off as i feel forgiven?
please. just wait.
first we need to accept that we will never know anything and we are all lying and i just want to stop
and sleep. rest for a little while.
this is all the further i can go because i'm becoming self conscious.
"it is the winter. coming here."
"I won't miss it."
Even as I sit in a green-carpeted sink hole, I feel that everyone is watching me.
It makes me want to go.
It's the strangest tree, I've ever seen in a library.
Too much awaits me. Too much presumed compliance,
so i cross bridges you hate
over brown clear creeks with sparkling green stones.
i am sorry if i am.
i am sorry if i am.
a culmination of you walked toward the other side.
a cliff was seen by your eyes.
the dream was nothing but a real face
who made fear send something through the doorway
like an old bullet in my chest
i looked down . i can'tremember what happened after that; when i woke,there were waves black and blue and empty gray...i was struggling, lying on my back.
i almost spoke out loud, "i'm not afraid to die,"
either that or, "please, i'm not ready."
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Big crawling black bug sliding over my sheets doing his thing at forur AM when I look over and I rile em up and shake at them I want to listen to the Beatles I am shaking the sheets and I roll a smoke up with my thick fingers and lie on my back crawling against the bed with my knees let the smoke ribbons hang in clefts watch it ice against the mattress and walls when I finally find sleep rustling around I
DREAM OF a DOG THING USED on A kid it’s his HALLOWEEN COSTUME WITH a demon DOG MASK THAT is spewing trunk TEETH and a bone out OF THE SIDE he comes flapping UP TO ME in SHORT JERKING STEPS TAKE IT OFF me HE SAYS I HAVE TO REMOVE the DOG HEAD AND there's a kid underneath and I pull IT off IT TAKES the KID’S FACE SKIN WITH IT too IN a SCREAM AND THERES STRANDS of BLOOD spurting out from HIS veins in his face and HIS TEETH aren’t COVERED by LIPS THEY’RE GNASHING against each other EXPOSED and IM WIDE EYED CRYING into THE DOG FACE it’s the KID FACE SKIN TOO he DROPS HIS BAG OF CANDY and it spills ONTO the WET STREET AND LIGHTNING STRIKES a TREE beside us so I SCOOP him up and run off out of the picture and the CLOUDS SWIRL BACK BLACK
but it’s morning and I watch a butterfly clapping on the window pane with blue wings batting and an antenna telling me to not worry with my mouth open and ribs quivering with heat another smoke will do the trick in this morning before I get up and finally the Beatles so I lay there breathing in out in again and know that to lead a better life I need my love to be here