Thursday, December 5, 2013
Storm by Johanna
Returning from the funeral. Quiet but for the wind. There is no rain, no thunder, only the distant flash of lightening in the eastern plains. Was it a night like this one? Driving north on the front range we watch the bolts strike out and reach the far corners of the dark sky with branching fingers. The darkness alight with hidden objects – billboard, farm house, factory, a car abandoned on the side of the road. Is this how it happened? I roll down the window and the air is warm and thick. The taste is metallic. My arm hair bristles. Did she see the car coming? A flash just bright enough to show us the world.
Occasional by Forrest
Out of the way, the storm chasers had fled towards the danger, only returning at dusk, but still hungry. We had a few eggs left which hadn't flown away, a loaf of bread not broken. We'll eat it all, they boasted, and we believed them until they did eat it all. Then they noticed we had nothing left, and asked if they could have that as well. We gave them the last of it for their equipment to record. They laughed, patted each other on the back. The best yet! they cheered, watching the dials move, the needles tremble. Our admiration was a helpless thing, little more than what the weather can be on occasion here, waving to the gathering crowd.
Malice by Lyle
Out the car window the signs & marquees gave way to storm clouds in that woozy way alcohol has of double exposing images in your head over time as you stare out the window of a car. Strung together by time and distance. An equation, perhaps. And you driving said something to me or not to me now and again. Sometimes with a light laugh afterwards and I smile and am warm in the heater-filled compartment watching the clouds roll in quickly and with malice.
When the Aliens Finally Arrive by Alan
I saw this coming in one of my earlier journals. It was several years ago. Don’t quite remember when. I was driving to Tennessee with Tim in the front seat mad with joy and love and cigarettes and nothing to fear. All of a sudden, the idea for a horror story.
When the aliens finally arrived, I shared with Tim, they made their way onto the systems that connected us. They bore into the wires that ran across the country and crept inside the billboards and interstate signs. They marked our tepid crossings with deep and profound vigor. They studied us as a race. They came from the clouds like a gentle rain.
How did you know they were there? Tim was curious. I was writing while driving, looking up between mile markers. I was sketching furiously in the fading light. The characters on the page began to lie on top of each other as it got darker. The more I wrote, the less I understood.
Maybe only we could see them. Tim was wild-eyed now. I stopped and looked up, away from the road. His head was half-out the window, his smile a kite in the wind.
The crazy ones.
The crazy ones, I repeated. Years later. In the onset of winter. At the sign of a storm.
American Wedding by Nicole
It happened in a court house. In a room with a conference table. In a little town I had not heard of the year before. Just the two of us, your brother, a judge on his lunch break, and a gray copy machine with it’s back turned to the room.
The judge pronounced my name wrong and again pronounced my new hyphenated name wrong. When it came time I dropped the ring. Watched it roll under the mahogany table before squatting down in-between the vows and my turn to say I do. I had been married once before. So long ago that it seemed like a dream. The memory folded in on itself like a worn blanket in the bottom of a closet.
I felt the carpet against my knees the hem of my black and white dress pushed up against my thighs as I stretched my fingers under the swivel chair. I must have made a terrible bride. I refused a new dress. I refused a new ring. I refused to let anyone where it seemed there was only us and more us.
I left my family for this tiny room. 1500 miles of distance and my first snow. The wind waiting outside to burn my cheeks. For my hand franticly searching. For the ring I would return to your finger before exiting the room and making the long drive home.
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Rainstormer by Alan
In the world of ghosts, a silhouette is used to incite a riot. It’s Platonic. Mimesis. An affront. Certain parties are likely to get agitated, which can lead to unpleasant marauding of said premises or general haunting.
There was a cat once. In love with a dreamcatcher set against a window overlooking the forest. Outside it was rainy. Perfect weather for goblins and dance. Before the trees, a screen. Before the apparition, a suggestion in the corners. Lines flashing across the eye the way an old television set establishes itself and gets its footing. Blurry derivations and intimations. The whole scene, they said, happened in a heartbeat, which was about right for the spook and the dash for the door.
A ghost perturbed is enough to lead a cat out into the rain.
There Are Many Paths Home But Only One Way to Leave by Forrest
White cat waits. Waits its turn brought wobbly by shopping carts on rubber wheels she leaves out front, a second-hand name tag hung on her old sweater with soiled yarn flowers preferring, “How May I Assist You Today?” She passes three, four doorsteps, self-debates theology at her own occasionally speaking aloud. Instance fails rationalization: any white cat then having agreement welcoming her back. Again. On floorboards near the stairway stalking frowned upon but having ignored her well this long this one white cat rushes in turns body upwards its whiskers making febrile signals.
A lambskin boot for sleep. She mutters. Christ. Again.
Why, it had been saved, hadn’t it.
But a recent neighbor, no less than someone newer—that is who restores the white cat to its comfort until it sees her picking up mail. Letters with no original salutation. Wickedness from the city claiming front porch and the façade. Her pacing. Yes, she’ll tape over that mail slot. Rotary phones accumulated in the kitchen where she calls him an impatient father. That’s a ring that’s a ring that’s a ring that—
Is what she wants to ask him about him for several months more, and more of a remarkable likeness sent was his pencil sketch of her thirty-fourth birthday than this white cat accustomed to her plodding. She discovers it curled in a ruined corner, it watching her watching. Conversational, she means, is attendant sincerity would it search every room, every other bend sunlight doesn’t dance upon, while the white cat takes scrambling breaths for rest from such help.
She’ll lock it out tomorrow. Thinking she’s better as she shouts—yet will she come grumble her Christs. Will a white cat jump from her arms.
Unless singing on the other end of the line speaks it away.
Cat Hell by Johanna
She winked her green eye as she twisted her whiskers and purred. Her throne of bones encased in flames.
“What am I doing here?” I asked.
“Don't you remember?” the cat said with a devious smile and I was suddenly consumed by gray memories: a window covered in frost, a bird (what kind of bird?), a raven mocking me, a convulsion of sneezes, a wide-eyed kitten wrapped in a blanket, a grove of tall trees, day shifting into night, walking away, arms swinging, a wretched yowl.
My skin singed as fires spurted in gusts all around me and I stuttered, “But, but... I couldn't keep it... I'm allergic...” I sneezed. “I had no where...” I sneezed again. My eyes teared and itched. I felt my swollen face. My throat closed tight. “I'm sorry,” I wheezed, “I didn't know.”
Screen by Lyle
Screen—a protective device, as from heat. Something that conceals. To conceal from view or knowledge, therefore, to see is to know (even biblically perhaps—a complicated metaphorical system. A window screen does quite the opposite in one sense. It lets air through. Osmosis as knowledge. But it also keeps bugs out—you will not know mosquito bites or the blue buzz of a fly. And it keeps things in, to an extent. A cat, perhaps learned in the language of boundaries, surfaces, containers. But the storm rolling in will pass through unless it is projected onto the screen and it is in fact not something one can see through, an ontological foreshadowing of the act of seeing or lack of that ability. All of these airy meanings are but perforations leaving the raggedy language an invisible border around the inevitable, awe-inspiring and treacherous nothingness behind it. But then language—I tell you, STOP!, becomes a cuirass and the void is screened off, reflected back on itself if only for a few moments and it is just a cat slapping her claws into the holes as she ferries in the northern. The first of the year.
Thursday, October 3, 2013
(courtesy & © Haik Kocharian)
Unpopular by Lyle
Once again I have failed. Not, I believe, in the way your would think primarily.
I waited the storm out up on the bluff. In fact, I watched it roll in, my legs dangling down the. I could dip the tip of my sneakered foot into the odd calm of the milky substance, which had risen and then stopped. Already the bones began to surface, grim bubbles. The bluff, by then, underwater but for the slightly sloped steeple of grass under my exposed buttocks. The sun, on a string, hissed and stopped as it dipped slowly into the water then rose up out again to steam the air with the broth-y brine of bones.
So you see how I have failed and there is no one to see the drop of water fall from the rubber toe of my shoe — I have failed to populate the world — or hear it splash.
Mangled by Alan
Franklin’s leaving was quite the scene. The entire department was there when it happened, of course, busy at work on the new designs and intermingling gossip transcribed by the surreptitious glance and notion towards. We believed in bandanas for the week. Someone hashtagged that stripes were in. There was another storm coming, Felix squeaked from the mail room.
If the last four weeks were any indication of his dissatisfaction, I never knew. If his gentle retractions should have given him away, I didn’t look up from the page. The shape of his mouth, his jeans, the way he handled my jaunts into indifference. My stoic repose. My statuesque ingratitude. These are images I’m left with in his wake.
We come into this world shaken by love and we will leave it the same way someday.
Untitled by Bill
I swear it was a man in leather kit - full pants, and sleeveless coat with no shirt. But cheap, poorly made, and coated in plastics to preserve it like the couch in the living room of his father's apartment years back. He walked in on dad and dad's girlfriend naked and sweating crumpled together on that couch once. Now its the end of summer and grasping at the fall his hunter's garb lined foolishly with felt he sweats, a strip mall Safarian stalking a decent gelato in an urban jungle where fifty thousand tourists a day traipse un-eaten through well tended paths. His never sharpened machete only used on the hedges around his mother's house.
This is the middle, where it has to grind out. He simply looks as foolish as we all feel. The middle where nothing happens, where there has to be only the pounding pounding pounding of movement. The same movement, over and over again, again and again and again, like his father's hips moving up and down between that woman's legs with the skirt around her ankle.
Mom had asked him if he's seen the skirt, the black and white striped one, a couple days earlier. This was a few years before she shacked up with Byron just to cut through some of the loneliness of an abandoned cuckqueen, and then it was there dangling over the floor. There it was on the mannikin before he threw it or close enough, the same colors, dad's key that he still had turning in the lock until the act itself is meaningless and the heart, the love, is just pouring out of all of them.
The faces that you meet become featureless patients awaiting triage, their faces wrapped in wet linen clinging to their features and destroying any individuality, the human removed from the being except for the relentless communal eventuality. Sawdust soaking up the blood where he fell out of the window and cut himself.
Business by Forrest
When the monsoon rains come, the market street proprietors must bring in their mannequins quickly, or risk losing them forever in the flood. I have lost a few this way myself and, other than they are not cheap to come by, I have learned to rue the disappearance of each one more than those in this coastal province who mind their own business: a grandmother here, a six-year old there, what does it matter. They tell us during the funeral that it does. By that time, I've already spent most of the week, once the clouds have passed, searching for my lost mannequin and finding instead distant relations who I had thought been swept away during the previous flood, or another hapless bystander who went out photographing the downpour. It is sad and inevitable, yet very few things can be dressed up as mannequins suitable for a drowned town. I've tried broomsticks potted in pails of hard cement. Once even a distant relation, until someone reported me. It is sad and inevitable. There are some perfectly good mannequins around, waiting to help out. If only it didn't rain so much; then everyone in this forsaken tourist trap would mind their own business.
Untitled by Nicole
Today they are dragging the lake. You know, out behind that old house with the orange shutters that are falling off at the sides? The ones with the sun and moon painted on them? The police are out there now. I can see them from my window.
I am watching but I won’t look for too long. I don’t want to see when they pull it out. It’s more than old condoms and beer cans and lawn mowers thrown over the sides.
Today they are dragging the lake. Someone that looks like James’ brother is wearing diving gear. They have maps spread out on the hood of one of the cars. I can’t see the map, but I see where they are pointing.
I am watching from my window. Don’t worry. I don’t move the curtains and am only looking through the place where the fabric folds apart. Don’t worry. I won’t look for too long.
Today they are dragging the lake. There is a yellow crane and they are dropping something into the water that makes ripples. Like the bathroom wallpaper - big circles that move in and out when you stare and don’t close your eyes.
I’m watching and they pull it up. The water falls out of the sides and drains back into the lake. Your box looks different. The paint has peeled up. But I can still see the flowers I painted. The dark circle in the middle and each loop of petal as big as your hands.
Today they are dragging the lake. I can’t keep you anymore. I’m sorry, you know. I am. I’m watching but I’ll stop looking soon.
Saturday, September 7, 2013
Mouse by Forrest
In the unlit basement I once entered only once, I had heard and seen nothing and was expected to hear and see nothing, the whole venture planned carefully, the way they were working starting at the end, the way people are forever fixated on outcomes in general or my own, specifically, not where we would like to begin, I hear, perhaps behind me, likely off to the side I search in the dark, but we have all the time, moving backwards, just out of what my sight makes out, when someone turns on the light fixture dangling languidly so that the only surprise is to hear or see anything that instant, and not to expect to hear or see it moving, a few gigglings starting in my presence, these letting me think I wouldn't have lasted this far even if I reminded them we were working towards the beginning where all the characters are introduced, where we know the action and setting take place, where we learn about what happens when disturbing a snake's hunger: timidity.
Lunchish by Lyle
It was not supposed to go this way. But it never was. Or is. Either. Both. But then that's neither here nor there. This is the infinity. This was the infinity. Not that not wanting to do it this way means anything one way or another. Just that the desire itself existed outside of this infinity, which was obviously trouble. But there was nothing to do about that. Because trouble, too, was outside of that infinity, like a speck of dirt on a lens or an errant pen mark on a math test. Did that mean something? Or was it a self-inclusive bracket? Meaning it meant everything and then nothing also. And included itself in its own digestive tract. The answer is always so close like the swelling of a brain. And then. Gone.
The Serpent Is Not Eating Its Tail by Alan
All that is wrong with history is alive and well in Las Vegas was what a wise man said to me once a long time ago. There is a lot of talk about a kind of meta-implosion in modern society…like we’ve gone so far in, we’re out, man. Way out. But the truth is it’s still like the Romans and before the Romans. “A place of darkness,” Conrad called it. The rules that govern our behavior are worse than the pilgrims and their little squirts into the continent and its pulsing heart. The serpent that eats its tail is not aware that the meal it is having is its, most likely, final one. There is a certain naiveté that is passable, affectionate, sweet almost. We forgive the oversight to a certain extent, enough to peer into the later realization as revelatory manifesto or starry doctrine of almost zen. But this serpent is not eating its tail. This serpent goes for the head, which is to say the core of our sanity. This serpent has purpose, a cause. Direction! Hisses “horror, horror” while it swallows us whole face first.
Snake Dreams by Johanna
In my dream, I told myself, “Remember this,” the rattlesnake that took a bite from my left shoulder, how I barely noticed, how it didn't hurt a bit. And I remembered even as the sound of yelling children awoke me, even though I had no time to write it down.
Later, I looked up meanings in my Dream Dictionary:
- A warning about a situation that is poisonous in your life.
- Your inability to make choices.
- Sign of being on the verge of personal transformation.
Nothing seemed to apply to me.
All day I saw snakes - sticks in the garden, cords lining the wall, vines twisting through holes in the fence.
When the children came inside from their play, hissing in whispers, they encircled my feet until I buckled to the floor. The oldest peered down at me with yellow eyes. “Mom?” he said.
I locked myself in the bathroom, though I knew it was useless; they always found me. I turned on the hot water, filling the room with steam, and waited.
Sunday, August 4, 2013
Gathering for the End of the World by Johanna
At first, it was difficult to believe that the apocalypse would come anywhere near their little town, situated in the middle of nowhere, cradled by mountains and bordered by desert. But it was true. The news had been on the radio for days. They heard it in their cars between yard sales or while driving their kids to school. They heard it inside banks and grocery stores. They read articles about it in the local paper. The apocalypse was coming to town.
Local businesses, accustomed to the tourism industry, began selling tickets to the apocalypse. Thousands of tickets sold in the first hour. People from all over the world were expected. The first concern of local police was the traffic it would cause. In order to navigate all the people who would certainly arrive by the busload, they decided to close down the streets, detour tourists to parking lots and shuttle them in.
The townies knew better, of course, then to buy tickets. They would be able to see the whole thing from anywhere in town. Instead, they gathered in small groups preparing themselves for the end with various libations. The sun was setting, turning the sky pink and gray and orange. The apocalypse was scheduled for just after dark. While tourists lined the sidewalks to get into the show, the locals took to the abandoned streets. Children in tow, jumping in rainbow puddles, they shuffled along the yellow lines, laughing and shouting like there was no tomorrow.
For Company by Forrest Roth
When I drive you to the gathering, it is not for company, nor for comfort. I can see your friends anytime I want. I can see you with your friends anytime I want. But I want them to see you with me. I want them to see me driving you in a car with one working headlight in the sun. I want them to gather around the one which doesn’t work and show them that it is, in fact, missing. And your friends will ask you about driving with one headlight in the sun, if only because they did not see the face of who was next to me.
Happenstance by Lyle
The second coming was largely uneventful. In fact, it went without notice. We were all standing around outside a vegan place when, apparently, a flash of light... happened? I’m still not sure about it all. In fact I don’t remember it at all. Someone sent me the photo afterwards. I do remember riding home and feeling a little odd. But who doesn’t?
The feeling was like something I had felt as a kid standing on a street corner. Like god (I must have believed in him then — bearded and wrathful) was pulling my spine, from the base, up. As if he wasn’t sure that I should be on earth. Not that he thought I would be better off up there or that I didn’t belong down here just that maybe he changed his mind (14 years after the fact). He is rather fickle, after all (14 years is nothing to god). So I would stand on the corner waiting to cross this street or another and feel like I was being tugged up by the spine; my mind had wandered all the way down the vertebrae a little at a time and was then being coaxed back but not straight back. Parallel to myself leading back up to my head (where I genuinely believed my “mind” existed) maybe six inches behind me. And it felt good. A kind of spiritual experience that I didn’t want to admit to because it was mine and only mine. I didn’t want to share it with anyone else. I wasn’t a christian. And it certainly didn’t feel christian. It felt like a rubber band pulled me up (but of course the rubber band reached all the way to heaven -- these terms are not my own; I have to use them so that you can quickly understand; I have so little time) and so had so much slack that it couldn’t possibly really lift me up. There was little doubt that it could NOT. Heaven. Haha. It’s just a feeling you don’t quite understand.
They're Talking about It by Alan
Beneath such a sky, a few of them would congregate and share stories. Lake Taghunock in the coldest months, the semester from hell, the place where cigarettes were cheap. Two of them had a thing for each other but were too indecisive to tell the others for fear of sudden philosophic collision. The others had things for others that they would occasionally talk about as well, but only when the sun went down.
They were in love with words and talking and also, to a lesser extent, silence. Theirs was the ellipse and the understated. They kept their hands in their pockets to feel the shape of some thing, but mostly what they really left the time with was a shape of thinking.
A new friend and potential life partner would make a remark years down the line from those days and immediately one of the few would be taken back. Such knowing from a stranger. Such shared experience. This must be right. This must be when things turn.
The words would be the impetus but the silence, like in certain photographs or memories, the result.
Wednesday, July 3, 2013
Here it is. The complete autobiography of Elaine and Rexroth, who after years of cohabitation and fights and hesitations and love decided it was worth the wait, in short. The baby might have been on its way around the end of spring if the timing were right and everything had gone well. It had, for the most part. Though long tucked away goodnight, the flow between them would wake every so often in the darkness of their home and swell for a moment of little premeditation, which was, they would say later, the seed of the tree that darkened their yard. It woke one night, spun its magic, and left. It took. Whatever was not there was, now, more than there. Whatever was wrong between them would be, now, perhaps, right. The idea was forward thinking. The possibility just hanged there, just beyond reach. A few weeks later, Elaine told the story about what had happened at work, where she spent most of her time lately, Rex would tell their friends. There was a fight. It was loud, but like most fights the thunder is not as loud as the lightning in the mind. Elaine stepped in, and one of the girls pushed her back and she fell over another and hit the ground hard. Something in her broke at that moment. And something in him broke when she told him about it. The blood. There was only a little. It could've been. It might have been. But they would never know, would they. And that's the part of the story that is the most special. The not knowing.
Egg, Egg, or Eggshell by Forrest
All around us somewhere are people successful in breakfast. They know which eggs to use, what colors are concerning—which is also knowing who can see the desert, who can see it encroaching. You, otherwise, let an eggshell fall. The floor, the hint of turquoise, red rock embedded. From a small bird, smaller egg: from the desert. Large bird, larger yolk, but not a desert largeness. Like the patio where you drop the shells. You refuse cooking different eggs, larger yolks. Larger potentials. How long, I ask, does an egg from that bird incubate until the embryo first develops a nervous system? In the same time any desert grows larger; but this patio, it is smaller, even as it stays the same size. Trying this on you I like, yet the only tease of things as they grow large or small for our breakfast: an egg in turquoise, an egg in red rock, an eggshell a shade of white not mistaken for another bird.
Shadow, Egg Shell, Shadow by Lyle
There is always a shadow upon my memory of that egg shell (I split the word to convey the inseparable uniqueness of egg and shell). Where it was eludes me as does so much else, but the three quarters of a shell. Had something come out of it? Some kind of reptilian bird perhaps that then lived its life out as primordial ooze? The shadow that is cast across this memory (all memories) is almost like heat igniting and obfuscating. I wonder, at some point, if it was I, perhaps, birthed cloacally, then by my own design pecking out the top into the blinding light. Though one preceded the other, does the order really matter? It does not. None of it matters now, cloaked in shadow as it is. As dark as an egg in the generative canal of a pigeon squatting in the recesses of window sill. More than shadow, shadow-memory.
Eggs by Johanna
He had been in the dark for so long that when consciousness began, he barely noticed. It began (and would eventually end) as all thoughts do, with desire. The desire - to stretch, to move, to eat, to cry- prompted a crack in the delicate shell that bound him. He saw the first beams of light drift through the narrow shaft and he knew awe. He put his back into the business of birthing until his world broke open and burst bright. His mother eyed him curiously and he knew other. She brought him food and he knew hunger. She threw his egg remains from the nest and he knew time.
She found the shell shards on the soft grass beneath the tree and cradled their delicate blue film in her palm afraid of crushing them. At home, she placed them in a dish with rocks and feathers she had collected.
In the morning, before she rose from her soft cotton sheets, she listened to the birds chirp outside her window and prayed that today she would not break. Without dressing, she wandered outside, leaving behind a note that read: Gone shopping.
Shell Count by Bill
Little lamb, they made the egg backwards, and put them out into space. Even the air wants to see us go. It pulls back from us, leaving the wind still while we wait in the heat. Tell me if gets to be too much, little lamb, tell me if you start feeling tired, faint, shaky. Tell me if you if you can see the sun, little lamb, or feel the dust blowing through your fingers. Better take the gun little lamb, because I can feel the trouble coming in from out of state.
Monday, June 3, 2013
Green Light Lurch by Bill
Far above, green light, telling us we can go, giving us permission to leave. And we want to leave, as the green light writes out time on the stones surrounding us. We've been here almost from the beginning, ticking away the hours, notching lines in the wooden frames of the library's tables, in the banisters of the stairwells, in the moldings around the floorboards.
It would be quite possible to trace the movements of our absurd society through the places we've chosen to take the knife too. Such a study would tell you nothing of our purpose or reasons for being here, but might chance to offer an accounting of our movements, our patterns, and our madnesses.
We'd stayed far too close to the end, given up so much in pursuit of a dream padding through ever-echoing halls, the dream to continue dreaming, but slowly the visions fled and we were left with a past we didn't want and a future we'd have no hand in. We mingled as we met surreptitiously sprinting in the pathways, crept off into alcoves to fuck or try to kill one another, sometimes both at the same time. The pills we took, the men and women both to keep us infertile while we waited, channeled both impulses irregularly. We'd spend weeks in a contemplative lethargy, barely moving, reading or studying the maps of known worlds before breaking off into a manic lurch demanding release and the quiet would be broken by the far-off sounds of animals. We didn't have time to perfect the formula before we closed the doors and buried them behind stone.
Now the green light is telling us we can go but we cannot break the pattern and continue cutting notches in the wood with the knives we carry with us all the time.
The Gambler by Alan
Every morning before the daily routine, he would gather his senses out from the dream and consider changing the plan. The plan, which had percolated for a few years before actually coming to fruition, involved playing the Lotto (and praying to God) as much as humanly possible everyday for the rest of his life. It was all about winning the numbers, whatever numbers that happened to reveal themselves to him that particular day, as often as possible. And in as many states as possible. The winning numbers were everywhere, so he drove everywhere. And for a while, he kept it up. A win every few weeks, is all he would ask for under his breath, gripping the steering wheel tightly. And when they happened, he would spring to life at whatever rest stop happened to pop up on the map. And he did this daily for years. And states. And coasts. The world became a system of hopes and longings and desperations. And when the light burst in through his shade every morning, he would gather his senses out from the dream and consider changing the plan, making a run for it, but the exit was always too dark.
Three Ways to Leave a Church by Forrest
1. Passive boredom; the most common, the most denied. Anyone but me. Anyone but you around me. An extension of the deepest piety of the saints, to be sure; but seeing you three rows ahead of me, surrounded by the eager others, I could always reconsider.
2. The higher calling. The noble way. The golden path. So on. This isn’t better for me but much better for you. If it sounds too easy, too good to be true, you’re likely agreeing with it. Moving on. So. New places, new faces, yes yes. After hours, and before. The sensation of holding different hands. Any sensation.
3. Faith—and the absence thereof. Knowing you won’t be there. Believing in it.
Middling Signs by Lyle
Through the high windows the crepuscular yellow of impending-rain-shrouded city and I think, in my middling-life, more about the red exit than the couple sitting under it locked in a rigor-embrace.
Later in an away-bed, after I’ve left my friends for the night (for good? isn’t it always for good?), I sweat-lie in the neon. I know it’s keeping me up, the light, but I can’t bring myself to curtain-close. It unnerves the godless nightmares that surely will come with sleep. Later I wake up and notice my shirt is on backwards, collar-tight. And the air is filled with night-breathing; my own, but not my own. A tingle of other in the room. The night-dulled windows nearly invisible; but for the grease-smear of fingers it would disappear. Gauze-humidity presses down in on the city. I think about my excise-friends. I wonder if they’re wondering about me. And the deep-breathing sounds not-my-own. But I am alone. Still the light from the neon, TEL, outside the window buzz-steady but I have nothing to say and no one who would listen anyway. The endless-transience so transient.