We alighted upon her palms far from the things of man. Little did we know, the devil mother we would find there.
So, you contracted Multiple Sclerosis, and it’s my fault.
I constantly tempted the karma forces by taking the tips others had left at restaurant tables next to me. I prompted the voodoo the night I cheated on you when you were tossing and turning in yet another sleep study. I spat at the Universe as I ripped all of the “do not rip” tags off of the over priced pillows at the new Pier One.
I, the constant fool, lived on the existential edge, but it was you who had been pushed off.
So, I blurted my confession to save you, to save love.
You threw the chair I painted Sorry game token color lime at me and left. I noticed a crack slightly right of center on the seat. I briefly wondered if it would pinch my ass when I sat.
I knew I deserved it.
“Why don’t I have any heroes?”
“‘Cause I taught you not to have heroes. ‘Cause I taught you not to believe in the myths of and about men. ‘Cause I taught you to seek truth. The truth you find not in fables but in studying the real character of a man. And, as I hope you found there is both heroism and villainy in everyone. And, I hope I have taught you the good judgment and compassion necessary to seek out the humanity of all. No, you have no heroes. You have something altogether different and more compelling. You have insight into the hearts of your fellow human beings.”
I resent making your turkey and brie sandwich this morning.
I smile full-mouthed as I remember the time you choked on the 12th grain of your pretentious 13 grain bread. I think you buy it to bother and one up me.
I lather hot mustard on your sandwich conveniently forgetting how you cannot handle its burn.
I hope it melts your smug eyes and drowsy lips until your face blares and echoes the blankness you are to me.
What happiness do you really deserve? The kind reserved for gnats and weeds.
Mild forgettable you.
I feel the squeeze of your mediocrity as I drop your sandwich in yet another bag.
I wish I too could be released down and away into a new darkness.
I your unforgiving sandwich slave
I stand naked on the corner of 4th and Main Street not believing or liking what I see. The bile rises.
A cop approaches me. I am afraid to go to jail. The adrenaline dilates my eyes. I bark I am blind.
S(he) cuffs me and guides me to the back of the paddy wagon.
I sit on the edge of the steel bench feeling the loose threads of the cloth strip behind me. I am supposed to hang on. Instead, I let it fall between my fingers.
We go to the hospital instead of jail.
I see you again. You with the eyes of concern. You with the smell of bee’s wax.
I ask you, “Will it always be this hard to get help?”
The white blanket you tuck around me muffles your squawks of concern. You hide my nakedness and my cuffs.
You bring me to a back, sterile room where drugged sleep also tucks me in.
The world fades and releases another episode.
I gave him my handmade holiday ornament. I jingled the bell as I wished him a Merry Christmas. I think he may have smiled; however, he did not reach out his disfigured hands to take my gift. I put the small present on the table next to his wheel chair.
As I left the nursing home, I found one last ornament at the bottom of a cardboard box. I jingled the bell and remembered our secret.
I live near the airport, and everyday low flying planes enter and exit my life unnoticed.
Today over my favorite part of the Nutcracker Suite, I heard the news tell me my new country had attacked my old one.
I left the tiny room and sat in my half empty closet. I thought of my grandmother. She once told me wearing red panties brought nightly visits from our dead loved ones. I’ve worn red panties every day and night since my father died. Now, I will wear two.
I will go up to New York City not Walmart to buy my new red mourning under dressing. I will cry in the fitting room under bright lights and security camera scrutiny.
Now, I sit staring at the light’s line tracing the closet door’s edges until it blurs.
Then, I hear the muffled sonic boom.
People find me just fine– when they need me.
Needfulness follows me until it’s my turn to chase her and pull her retreating tresses.
They are auburn. She calls them red.
I’ve tasted one of her red hairs. She smelled of orange blossoms and grandeur.
I wanted to digest her.
So, I kissed her forehead leaving wet imprints from her third eye to her orange scalp.
As I breathed her in, I bit a piece of hair and sucked her through my teeth.
No flowers found–only red clay protein.
“Why is every picture I click emphasizing his damn wedding ring?”
“I am sorry. Can we take another one. Maybe with that pinkish purple stuff?” Katherine suggested.
“Pinkish purple stuff, really?” Margaret says stiffly.
“They send us a food photographer who knows nothing of food. Bloody brilliant!” she thinks grabbing the “stuff” and beginning to lovingly spoon it on the plate.
“Oh great… a purist,” Katherine thinks blushing at her ignorance and the awkwardness of the situation.
After all, it’s not very often Katherine had to take a photo series of her lover and his wife.
wrecks and rebuilds
my spilling spirit.
our heat burns water
melt on our tongues.
i tattoo your lip’s
tracks on my thighs.
“When Gregor Samsa woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, he found himself changed in his bed…” The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka
“Why is it so hot this morning?” I ponder as I slowly wake from oddly lucid dreams of chewing rawhide and hunting flying squirrels.
I fall out of my bed onto the gray floor’s hard ceramic tiles.
“What is going on? Why can’t I straighten? Am I going blind? And, what is that smell?”
I crawl to my cherry Coaster Louis Philippe dresser and slowly paw my way to its top and use it to balance.
I stare at what must be me in the beveled mirror with abject horror!
In the place of me, a middle aged, overweight, dental hygienist, a golden retriever pants!
“But, my husband is allergic to dogs!” I bark.
“Oh no, did I just bark?!”
I frantically scurry around the room trying to understand what has happened and resist my gut urges to simultaneously chase my tail and fetch a ball.
“Oh no, I have a tail!”
I wake to the easy midday sunlight, sprawled on my favorite rug scrap on the back porch.
“What an odd dream!” I smile and yawn, “I think I was a middle aged, overweight dental hygienist. Who wants to think about getting old, ice cream and teeth all day when I can think about running in spring green fields and autumn brown swamps, sucking on onion grass, and playing with my pups?”
Surrounded by my young, yipping and nipping fuzz puffs, I chase my tail gleefully spying a red ball needing fetching.