Issue Thirty-Six

When Did it Start?

When did it start my husband asks. The it to which Charlie refers, means the intense emotional rollercoaster I am presently on. Holding back tears and gripping the back of the kitchen chair as if I’m whooshing down the rails of a Great America ride, I answer that I don’t know.

Freckled Gal

“Drink the dark or else you’ll forget,” laughs the freckled gal. She flits here, there. The murk obscures her figure, but not her laugh, a raspy cackle like someone being garrotted.

Denver

I loved her name because it made me think of misty haloed mountains. It made me think of snow falling from the sky and turning the earth pure and white.

At the end of a story

I wrote a story of our friendship, but tequila and beer fucked it up in the end. I even reworked the ending to undo the parts about the car’s speed and the curve in the bend of the road, but I couldn’t delete the enormous bruised oak tree on Palmer or your twisted, bloodied body being pulled from the wreck.

Maybe, Maybe

I might find another dog. Maybe next year, after I’ve finished
with this year’s therapist, done with all that talking about the
unsuccessful talking I’ve done with other people, maybe I’ll be
stripped down to just walking or sitting and saying Good dog!

After the Death of Sons

In a museum dedicated to man-made landscapes,a virtual elevator lowers one couple through Earth’s calibrated crust, temperature rising from coal mine to gold mine to deepest bore hole, heats verifieduntil they are safely in hell.

Ball of Twine

Chaos theory describes the organizational nature of the universe. Benoit Mandelbront, a mathematician, described it as a ball of twine: “A ball of twine appears to be a point when viewed at a great distance, a ball when viewed nearby, and a curve when viewed extremely close.”

A Change of Tune

You hear the strings bend, the hammer downs and pull offs, but not in ways that impress your critical ear. Although such musicianship would have been cause for celebration when you played guitar, it’s now a “pedestrian display, dragging the album throughout a rock ‘n’ roll mire.”

Possession

I don’t believe that my husband is dead. The dead cannot walk, but every night he shuffles into our bedroom and lies down next to me, swamping me with his exhale of stale corpse air, breathing with lungs that I know are as black and wrinkled as rotten plums.

At the Aeroplane Zoo Cafe

There were few safe public places left to meet, but we knew we’d be among strangers at the Aeroplane Zoo Cafe. My heartbeat was heartbeat, heartbeat, heartbeat as I entered our foreign town. You soon sat at my side, and told me about your new concert. A different...

When Did it Start?

When did it start my husband asks. The it to which Charlie refers, means the intense emotional rollercoaster I am presently on. Holding back tears and gripping the back of the kitchen chair as if I’m whooshing down the rails of a Great America ride, I answer that I don’t know.

Freckled Gal

“Drink the dark or else you’ll forget,” laughs the freckled gal. She flits here, there. The murk obscures her figure, but not her laugh, a raspy cackle like someone being garrotted.

Denver

I loved her name because it made me think of misty haloed mountains. It made me think of snow falling from the sky and turning the earth pure and white.

At the end of a story

I wrote a story of our friendship, but tequila and beer fucked it up in the end. I even reworked the ending to undo the parts about the car’s speed and the curve in the bend of the road, but I couldn’t delete the enormous bruised oak tree on Palmer or your twisted, bloodied body being pulled from the wreck.

Maybe, Maybe

I might find another dog. Maybe next year, after I’ve finished
with this year’s therapist, done with all that talking about the
unsuccessful talking I’ve done with other people, maybe I’ll be
stripped down to just walking or sitting and saying Good dog!

After the Death of Sons

In a museum dedicated to man-made landscapes,a virtual elevator lowers one couple through Earth’s calibrated crust, temperature rising from coal mine to gold mine to deepest bore hole, heats verifieduntil they are safely in hell.

Nobody Told Me Flowers Scream

A car drives past my bedroom window blasting ‘Return of the Mack’ and I just — feel so jealous. I’m in the dark with my newborn who has finally let sleep win, lives going by outside like carriages on a Ferris wheel, luminous and swinging with adrenaline.

Ball of Twine

Chaos theory describes the organizational nature of the universe. Benoit Mandelbront, a mathematician, described it as a ball of twine: “A ball of twine appears to be a point when viewed at a great distance, a ball when viewed nearby, and a curve when viewed extremely close.”

Our Healing Scar

You stare at the gaping wound on their hip. My God!  

“It’s bad, isn’t it?” Your teenager cries. “I’m sorry, is it bad?” They are panting.

The bathroom walls are choking you.

A Change of Tune

You hear the strings bend, the hammer downs and pull offs, but not in ways that impress your critical ear. Although such musicianship would have been cause for celebration when you played guitar, it’s now a “pedestrian display, dragging the album throughout a rock ‘n’ roll mire.”

Possession

I don’t believe that my husband is dead. The dead cannot walk, but every night he shuffles into our bedroom and lies down next to me, swamping me with his exhale of stale corpse air, breathing with lungs that I know are as black and wrinkled as rotten plums.

At the Aeroplane Zoo Cafe

There were few safe public places left to meet, but we knew we’d be among strangers at the Aeroplane Zoo Cafe. My heartbeat was heartbeat, heartbeat, heartbeat as I entered our foreign town. You soon sat at my side, and told me about your new concert. A different...

Pin It on Pinterest