Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Rainstorm



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 fa├žade. 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.

***

Untitled by Nicole

To say it was obscure would be an understatement. It was more like this. The flash. The glimpse of something between what you think it is and what it really is. Her eyes on mornings like this. Not really gold or blue or amber or green. No, it’s just dark. The stare. The look that says “wait.” Just like that. “Wait.” And between us? A pause that will never be recovered.