Tuesday, February 23, 2010

50: Words I Meant to Write

On May 5, I meant to write this: eyes break night, morning sleepy but fresh, the squishy marble of uncooked bacon. On July 12, this: come closer, please don’t explain the darkness, here we have answers. On October 19, I did write this: bleak, the world Greek statues with destroyed arms and red soot covering flattened buildings, I hate. I didn’t mean to but did. I can’t take it back.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

49: Transcriber

She wrote by hand their book of revolution. A man emerges from the sea. The colonel sees her in the chair, sitting erect, staring straight ahead. Smooth skin the color of wet sand. Young, she could be his daughter. He imagined her hands of concrete bone moving across pages, leaving ink trails. The man from the sea. He is the end. Her piano player’s fingers—they’d have to be bent, broken, rendered unusable. He laughs. Through the open window a jeep backfiring, scents of sea water, pork roasting in a pit.

Friday, February 19, 2010

48: Revenge

She sits on the porch, looks at the backyard of trees and deep woods. The chirping of birds, the rustle of wind on leaves. At night, it’s just blackness, nothing but sounds, her mind writing fictions about what each meant. This wasn’t the way it was supposed to be. Somewhere tires crunch on gravel circling, never coming closer no matter how much she imagines so.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

47: Come As You Were

A shotgun is a shotgun, a rule never broken. There’s a person running across a field to tell the story to two more. It spreads. The moment dies in lit candles, mourning, those songs played on stereos. Everyone grows up. In your mind you can always revisit. In your mind there’s the moment, scratchy voices, beautiful boy gone away.

Monday, February 15, 2010

46: Clearing the Table

We’re old, bones creaking and cracking, and it’s just after breakfast and I said, who’s going to clear the table. You snap your fingers and say, how’s this, and there went the dishes in the sink, fruit husks in the garbage, table spotless with candle in the center. When did you learn to do that, I said. When’s not the question, you said, and I watched you as you stared out the window, the sky shades of autumn leaves.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

45: The Bird

Here’s a bird over here. What kind? Off go wings and black silhouette. Inky drawings of childhood, fading light of atomic tangerine sun.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

44: A Bad Day

You said, today was a day that didn’t smile. Asleep the sky shatters, cries confetti. A sunny day without sun. How? Ghosts wander dust-coated streets searching for lost souls, the way home from madness. You bury your face in my arm, cry. Why? Asleep then awake. Now you’re someone else.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

43: Pet Rhino

How did I get a pet rhinoceros? I could tell you a novel. Consider this: you wake up one morning and there’s a huge horned beast in your backyard. A hulking grey leather couch with feet. Over coffee you decide, this is something for the grandkids, just go with the flow. Look up at the sky. It doesn’t get any bluer than this.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

42: Car Pushing Ninety

X and Y are racing down the highway, car pushing ninety, roller coaster thrill ride. Sun toasting their bodies, wind whipping their hair into dancing flames. Y, the passenger, is fidgeting in the seat. X sees this, looks at the road before him. Flat, open, landscape a picture you’d mount above a living room sofa. He accelerates.

Friday, February 5, 2010

41: The Chinese Restaurant

The maitre d’ shouts, “Seinfeld, Four!” No one comes, so I approach, say, I’m Seinfeld. Sea bass special tonight—very fresh, he says. We follow him to a table, sit, ponder the menu. At drinks, a woman walks in, shouting for Seinfeld. Right this way, the maitre d’ says. I can hear her fuming—feet stomping, plastic and metal pieces clanging in her jacket, purse. Crab rangoon, sea urchin and spinach over noodles. She’s coming full force, steam pouring from angry head. We’ll be skipping on the bill so, as her wrecking ball purse goes airborne, what’s it matter.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

40: The Dilemma of the Modern Writer, Perhaps Solved

Where the others failed is length. He taps away, tap tap tap. The distractions of other people, the accumulation of baggage—there’s just not time so no. Here’s a brilliant observation. Look at the churning and spitting of the modern age, minute news cycles. Here’s pretense, artistic license. He gives a character, a situation, a complication. Don’t look and presto. Here’s a trite ending.

Monday, February 1, 2010

39: His Brother Orpheus

Argo and brother Tim were going to write a book. A fictional guide to the world’s craziest haunts, from the viewpoint of slasher film victims. Then Tim’s head was found floating in a river. The body never found. Argo by himself, singing his brother’s songs. Imagining what a severed head says, the loss of fiction, craziness.