Thursday, August 15, 2019

2 Minutes. Go!

By the time they rang the brass bell, Jep Winters was dead, his wife was no longer a virgin, and Sam John was wearing the leather winner’s belt, standing in the center of the ring and laughing. The maidenhead had nothing to do with Sam. It was a direct result of a repressed homosexual boxer who never tried women and a spurned wife who had never tried liquor. The death was tangentially related. None of it mattered in the grand scheme of things except to the old woman. The old woman smiled.


It took a while to sort out. New champion, death, and hymen destruction – that’s a lot to pack into the VFW on a Saturday night. All the yardmen were there. Plus there was a carnival in town. The carnival was full of junkies and miracles. People loved the carnival. They loved to fight and fuck and die there just like anywhere else.


Old man Porter, the mayor, liked to dress up in women’s clothing, but no one knew it except for Father O’Leary.


Jep’s body was burned. What was left of it. His wife ended up birthing a bastard right around the beginning of Spring, but she told everyone that it was Jep’s last gift to her. Sam John retired after his championship fight. He lived out his days eating pureed vegetables and shitting himself, the title belt around his soft waist. No one boxed in town after that night. Everyone figured the devil was going to the fights, and, in some ways, they were right.


Father O’Leary preached about the sins of the flesh, while he kept the secrets of his congregation in the back pocket of his pants to tinker with when he got bored. His diversions were God-sanctioned after all.


The old woman returned to the trees and vanished.


No one was around to see it.

Friday, August 9, 2019

2 Minutes. Go!

High noon. Remember that shit? Settle your differences. Vent your spleen. Sure, it was stupid. But it was contained. How many times you read about a cowboy loser shooting as many people as he can for some imagined slight? I mean, ideally, we wouldn't settle bullshit with bullets, but what the fuck? No one gives a shit about your manifesto. No one cares about you aside from the other pale, twisted weirdos on 8Chan.

I wonder if you will ever realize what you really took. Love. Faith. Family. Security. All gone in a second because an asshole in a suit told you things you wanted to hear and life has been so unfair. Gotta be somebody to blame. Gotta be some kids worth killing for your frustration.

I didn't get my side of ranch. I'm gonna punch every waitress in this place.

And I'm so tired of this gun debate. If guns aren't the problem, lets have a gun free year and see what changes. And tell me again about knives in England. You know how many mass knife massacres there are? You ever tried to kill someone with a knife from thirty feet away?

I guess I'll just wait until it's my turn. Go down with my knife in my hand, saying, "yup, told you so you fucking idiots."

The new American Dream.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

2 Minutes. Go!

The edge of the hedgerow was the edge of everything; I gave you safe passage, invited you to come and dance as the honeybees toiled. You told me that your Dad was a bad man, and I believed you. I picked you flowers while you cried and said you couldn't say anymore. Smell of BBQ from down the shore. Lawnmowers and cut grass. Everything smelled vaguely of kerosene. I wanted to punch your Dad to death for making you cry, but I didn't. I just picked flowers and told stupid jokes and that was enough. Summer turned to fall and we met by the hedgerow, shyly.

My Dad didn't do anything bad. He didn't have it in him. My Dad was like freshly starched laundry smelling liniment. I asked what he did that was so bad, but you only cried harder. For the sin of men.

Teachers feared us, flip and arrogant. I was the jester and you, the heir apparent. You spit your light like a gasoline fire, arrogant. You were dangerous, but no one knew or suspected shit. They never realized that you would grow up to be the kind of person who serves on committees and boards. A person with influence.

And now that I think about it, rainbows and beaches, crooked joints pulled from tubular sweatshirt pockets. Yeah, it's all there. Nitrous flashes be damned, I'm telling you that I heard something with my eyes and you're straight fucked. You might as well never breathe again. No one can help with your problems unless you talk about them. Sitting and crying don't do shit, Slim.

I can taste electric citrus. You are just the devil's mistress. I caught the shit, but the fan just missed us. Dissed us, kissed us, sunshine blissed us. And yeah, of course I love it when you call me Big Poppa. Now pop a couple more because we're headed for the dance floor. All you suburban kids. Hands in the air, life on the line, pop another Percocet and have a good time.

And you age and grey and get old if you're lucky. Look, you're a mom, and you're a point of civic pride and nobody knows about the fucked up games that get played in your basement. How you make the poor folks dance and prod each other. Anything for your amusement. It's just money. They're just bums and drug addicts. This is life. This is fucking theater. I saw a drunk junkie, and I threw a TV at her.

The smoke climbs the wind and the evening fawns over all of us. Degenerates rejoice. Paranoids shut their blinds. Saints keep right on dying. Me and your mom are done trying. But you can still call me Daddy and not be lying.

Friday, July 19, 2019

2 Minutes. Go!

Join me on my journey; we'll be looking for misfits and scaredy-cats. Sycophants and misanthropes. I just want to hold this sad, dirty teddy bear - wrap me in morphine blankets, let me die. I smell decay and recompense. I'll shake my head until the lie makes sense. I'll grit my teeth and choke back the blue and pearl reality bumpers; we got a city full of buildings and not enough jumpers. 

Look up in the eaves where the pretty birds sing. Tell your lover that you're leaving and your taking everything. Watch the blood pool under the head of a man who didn't wear his hard hat. That's a hard lesson. Rat a tat tat.

I forgot that America was so fucked up. I forgot I was right about it. I thought I left the worst of it behind, shaking white pan-handle sand from my sneakers. Eyes closed and ears just inches from the speakers. You can feel that bass in your chest. 

I didn't know so many men were rapists and sociopaths. I guess I've been mostly lucky to meet relatively OK dudes. Maybe I'm too poor to hang out with the truly depraved. My crew was all: Yo, we got forties and zig zags, what you got? Rich dudes: let's kill this woman for fun. 

I don't know man. Let it snow, man. Let it snow. 

We've got everything so twisted up, and it's hard to see into each other's yards. Around here, it's Bay Area beautiful. We got folks of every description. We don't even describe them. You do you. But the Bay is small and the country is big. The preachers are predators and the President's a pig. There are bats in the belfry. 

They feast on blood. 

You are standing on the edge of nothing. You are complicit if you aren't seditious. The wolves have taken off their sheep hides. Double down, let your money ride. Time to see how the sheep and wolves will out the lions. We cling to noble hope that, somewhere, there is someone with the courage of our convictions. As we cower alone and outraged, culture-suiciding while the fiddlers burn the whole damn place down with riches. 

You got to decide what you want to do and do it. Stop telling people you're going to do it. Quilt, revolution, or mountain climb, talking ain't getting you nowhere. 

Friday, July 12, 2019

2 Minutes. Go!

I am the regret of the elderly. The deja-vu fucked feeling that settles in your heart as your try to sleep. Sleep is an illusion. Sleep is a vicious whisper; Johnny cut your heart out. He keeps it in the freezer. Remember when we sat under a freeway overpass, forties sweating in the sun? We were bigger than everyone. 

Looking through the wrong end of the microscope.

Children die. Women get raped. That's a drag sure, but have you watched this new show? This new show will fuck your head up. Give you something to think about other than Border Patrol and Peter Thiel and what the fuck is going on anyway. Think I'll douse myself in grain alcohol and start a goddamn fire. 

I remember when all you needed was cigarettes and a cup of coffee. And me. I was the catalyst. 

Yeah, I know your Dad was a dick. Yeah, I get it, he never understood you, and you never undestood him. Did you understand the symbolism? Maybe not. I once saw you abandon your friends to die. That was illuminating. I learned from that shit. 

Donut shop. Coffee shop. Park bench and lights throbbing. Did you hear about? Did you see? That show last night. They were wasted. Or I was. Just like every show. And now they all seem the same. Was it a show I played or was I just there. Did. I. Make. The. Guestlist. ???

Diner breakfasts are salvation. Hash brown Jesus, make me whole. Trade me some shuteye for a glossed out soul. One bump of salvation, cause I'm on a roll.

Splitting whiskers won't make you whole. 

Friday, July 5, 2019

2 Minutes. Go!

The sun sets and you try to remember. Janice, you live inside the truth, but your silly notions of justice queer you; You smell like filth. You smell like disaster, loss, and beauty - like a sweet rotten smell that climbs inside your head, throttling you with the bleak reality; you want to turn the other cheek, but no one hurt you. You want to ride, singing, into the future, but you don't even exist anymore ,,, you are light memory, clawing at the edge of ragged sleep.

Remember when you were small and time seemed almost static, swimming in the omnipresent afternoon? Janice, time was that you didn't know anyone. You were floundering. You were a joke and the village idiot all rolled into one. They wanted you to fail, Janice.

Don't look at me like that. Avert your eyes. This isn't an exhibit. I'm not your monkey, Janice. You won't tell this story. And you won't get the recompense you feel is owed to you. You are blasphemy and truth, a stolen kiss on a winter's morning. You exist without my consent, spinning, and you are making us all dizzy, Janice.

Close your eyes now. You deserve this rest.

Friday, June 28, 2019

2 Minutes. Go!

The tired evening sits upon the old wooden fence, wheedling. The animals are quiet, lost in the vacant contemplation of the moment: fatigue, full bellies, cool of the evening, falling as benediction. The man stares into his empty glass and scratches the whiskers on his chin - Virginia hills call to him, and he hears the stories of his grandfather which tell him: you are here, you are supposed to be here, you are alive.

The body of the boy is stinking and attracting flies, but it doesn't matter. He'll deal with it. He'll deal with it and everything else because that's what he said he would do. The obligation is a yoke; he is plowing his subconscious. The boy smells like shit. It is a real smell. Alive.

Behind the cabin, the stream trickles by as it has for years and ages, and maybe all time. It is filled with smooth rocks and windfall branches and slick, shiny trout that leap and flash in the falls. Watch this festival of natural absurdity glisten as it tumbles in the green water, heavy with rain.

The night will come, and it will signal the hoot owl and the hound. The boy will take his final resting place in the ground. The night birds will sing, and the neighbors will call that ominous. A panther will cleave the night like a woman's screams, and all will be laid out into the morning.

We don't need your gods. We don't need your medical learning. It's all and more that we know - what's in these hills. Every story ever told by man and half of his sins live in those trees. And when summer hits its stasis point and night is tipping scale toward morning - hell, nothing matters except the stories we tell ourselves. And they get big. Bigger than the hills.

There are more secrets. Everywhere. They clog the tepid air with their contrite seductions. There are corpses in the closets where most store skeletons. There are crossed bloodlines and cursed brothers - and in summer, when the night is a velvet curtain, you walk softly and you listen for the big wind that says the storm is coming. And if you're smart, you pray, whether you believe in it or not.