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He said, leaning close, “The chemistry between us is electric, don’t you feel it?” It made me think about the man (well, boy really, he wasn’t even twenty yet) who worked with my brother doing roofing. He was on a metal ladder, leaning against a house whose electricity had not been properly turned off. It wasn’t anything dramatic, no frying, crispy noises or shooting sparks, he just climbed down from the ladder and kind of sat down saying he didn’t feel good and then he died.
Electric… with chemistry like that, I think you are way too dangerous for me.
There’s an Irish proverb that says “When a twig grows hard it is difficult to twist it. Every beginning is weak.” And I think about how weak our beginning was, and how easily it twisted under different ties and pulls but resisted and grew stronger. What started out as a bud developed into a delicate branch, hardened into a sturdy branch. But what comes after hard? Bitter, but in regards to the analogy for twigs, we’ll call it brittle. A new proverb, then? When a twig goes beyond hard, one twist will snap it in half. Every ending is fragile.
Go to a thrift store and find where they stack their books. Don’t look too closely, close your eyes and pull a book from the shelf. Buy that book, no matter what it is. Chances are the book you chose is horrid; a spy novel whose thrill a moment prose never realized its moment had passed. Or a love story, a good old bodice ripper confusing rape for romance. Read it anyhow. If you’re like most of our culture, you’ll enjoy it. Too many people read crap.
I find I’ve become what I never wanted to be: a literary snob.
For ten minutes he ran through the overgrown field, ripping up grass and other greenery as he went. He threw his head back and gave a bellowing roar while pulling on his shirt, sending its buttons airborne. Dropping to his knees he shoved handfuls of grass, with dirt still clinging to its roots, into his mouth, snarling as he chewed it.
He spit out the grassy green pulp, heaved himself to his feet and closed his shirt with the only remaining button. He walked, in silence, back the way he had come. Ten minutes was his limit for running amuck.
It was just a stuffed alligator, inspected by #163, and nothing was found to be inferior. Are you imagining 163 or more people lined up in a row, carefully gazing at oversized alligators shaded a green never before seen on a real gator? Looking for flaws, ripped tails or overtly crooked stitches? When #163 goes home at night, does he sleep peacefully or are his nights filled with visions of big soft toothed alligators missing eyes or spilling stuffing? Is he really a he or is he a she? Numbers are just too ambiguous and my mind is wandering again...
Snow falls faster than the temperature but the temperature still plummets steadily. The doorway he’s huddled in is deep but not deep enough to keep out the wind insisting on coming in. He breathes into his hands to warm them and the smell of whiskey and rotted teeth float upward. It’s not a pleasant odor but he knows he’ll smell worse before the night’s over.
“Can’t pull your pecker out to piss tonight.” He mutters to himself as his bladder begins to ache. As another shiver wracks through him, he wonders again why no one ever tried to save him.
Scaredy cat. That’s what they always called her because she never spoke or stood up for herself. Timid and shy, she watched while everyone else took what was theirs to take while burying her in their shadows. She consoled herself with the idea that she, at least, was remaining true as their lives became a materialistic farce. She, at least, still understood the nuances of life, its tiny joys and infinite pains, every bump and rumple, while they became dried out, empty husks.
What’s worse, selling your soul for the material or never realizing you have a soul at all?
She had a problem with personification, and to her, all things had feelings. Feelings that could be hurt, hearts that could be broken. Once she was angry and kicked a rock but as it skittered away she thought
What if I just tore it away from its loved ones, what if I made them sad?
She ran to catch it before it became lost and carefully placed it back where she thought it went with a quiet apology. Even now, as I write this, she’s apologizing for the word choices I make, certain the very words not used are jealous.
“I don’t want to leave another smear on your soul.” He said. She placed her hand on his shoulder, but with a shrug, he moved away. “It’s scarred enough already.”
“Leave then. I don’t care.” She turned from him.
“Liar liar liar liar.” He crooned as he pulled her back to him, cupping her face in his hands. “But I can only love you the only way I know how and it will always be just a little bit too much and never enough at all.”
His kiss was a sigh, then deeper. And on her soul another stain appeared.
I do not need another knight in shining armor, nor a hero on a white mount, rushing to my rescue.
But, he says, I see sorrow in your eyes.
And it’s true, sorrow and I go way back, and while we’re not friends, sometimes we have walked hand in hand. But that’s life and all the proverbial crumbles of that proverbial cookie.
But you (I) need you (me).
True heroes happen almost by accident. Those who set out to be heroes will always be looking for a victim because they need that rush, that ultimate feeling of control, to survive.
Deceiver, weaving another tangled web, knowing all along practice makes perfect, hoping this time your web will collect him. Know this, though, he’s not a harmless moth or any other simple victim to be caught up by your tricks. And all those snarled up sticky threads you’re laying could trip you up instead.
There’s something about him. Something that tells you that he just may be another spider spinning a far more potent web. And maybe that’s what you’re really after… not to catch him but maybe to be caught in his tangle.
And what a tangle it would be…
His name on the streets is Smoke. Ask him why he’s known as “Smoke” he may tell you or he may just twist his mouth into a sneer and spew out a rather impolite epithet before walking away. If he tells you, he’ll say it’s because he smokes everyone he goes up against, dude, and if you’re not careful, he’ll smoke you too and then he’ll show you his gun to make sure you know he’s not joking. Only he knows it’s really because he was once young enough to believe smoking cigarettes was the worse thing he could do.
She needs more time.
He needs more space.
They need more courage.
You need more answers.
I need more reasons.
We need… well, I’m not exactly sure of what we need, but I know we need more “something.”
She needs more attention to feel more loved.
He needs more money to buy more gadgets.
They need more than them to show their importance.
You need more control to gain more power.
I need more freedom to take more chances.
We need more options to make more choices.
More is the golden word in everybody’s hearts and minds.
More’s the pity.
Glorious delusions, passion turned askew. Should we think of anything else on a day like today? Celebrate those paper cutout hearts and wilted red roses. Create a mirage of love to cover up that corner of your mind that screams at you it’s nothing more than lust, lust, lust… If you want your illusions to be complete, indulge in chocolate coated fantasies and something in a nice shade of diamond for her wrist, ears, fingers, etc… With what you’ll buy her, she’ll buy your delusions, illusions and allusions. Oh, she’ll know them for what they are, but buy them anyhow.
You know you’ve analyzed one too many poems when you imagine a world where everyone sought out a symbol in everything you wore...
“Her use of the color brown represents her desire to get back to nature, to the rich, fertile soil of earth.”
“No, she uses the color brown to show a state of death and decay. She’s saying she’s dried up like a sun fried desert.”
“No way, the brown is too dark, like a deep chocolate cake. It’s all about her longing for decadence, the sin of that devils food cake.
“But what about the blue jeans?”
“Well…” she said, “if you’re going to sin, it may as well be original.”
“That’s not what the expression “Original Sin” means…” He said. “Eve held out her hand with…”
“one little…” She muttered.
“Apple of knowledge and Adam couldn’t resist…” He continued.
“her forbidden fruit.” She smiled as he frowned.
“And we, their descendents,”
“the fruit of her womb.”
“…still pay.” He ended with a smug grin.
“Cliché, cliché, cliché… and what’s so original about a cliché?” Then she leaned closer, put her lips against his ear and whispered,
“But why are you talking apples when I’m talking sin?”
He’s longing for a hedonistic lifestyle, big cars, even bigger houses and all the fair weather friends only money can bring. If he thought someone would buy them, he would sell his grandmother, his soul and his unborn child just for a taste of that rich and famous lifestyle because he knows that’s the only way he’ll ever be happy. But for every dollar he saves, he has to spend two and he’s becoming bitterer with every dollar lost. Pauper of the heart, his bitterness turns to hatred for those who have what he has not and he is undone.
Do you want to keep me? Then sing to me. Not a loud song, something quiet, something deep, it’s far more intimate that way. Everyone and anyone will talk to me, but no one ever sings to me anymore. I remember a time when I startled you with a question and your answer came out low, in a voice rough with emotion, in its way, a song, revealing far more than you ever meant to reveal. I want revelations like that again.
Your voice, washing over me, is far more entrapping than any other way you’ve managed to touch me.
It wasn’t good. His feet slipped in the mud and the mercenary crouched in front of him used this misstep to his advantage and thrust his sword out.
“Aghhhh!” He bellowed as that sword plunged into his gut and then out again when he fell backwards. The mercenary, common scum hired from out-kingdom paused to smile at his death throes before rushing back into the heat of the battle… “Avenge me… avenge me Borac…”
“What’s a venge? Who’s Bore rack?”
“Get out of my room, brat!” Sheesh… little brothers are a pain… “Now, where was I? Oh, yeah… Avenge me…”
I saw a dead angel once. It looked like he had been dead for a long time; his skin was a pallid gray, but darker where blood settled. But how long he had been gone doesn’t matter, dead is dead. His wings were tattered and torn, but that’s not what killed him. His chest was ripped opened and his heart torn out, that gory mass still clutched tight in his hands. Why would an angel tear his own heart out? As I leaned over to close those empty eyes, I knew... you can’t exist solely on the love of another.
Follow your dreams. Follow your dreams. That’s all she ever heard, that’s all everyone ever said to her anymore. Follow your dreams. But what happens, she thought, what happens when… she looked down at the scissors in her hand, at the eyeball it had so recently pierced from which blood still slowly dripped and winced as she remembered the slurping kind of suctioning sound the eyeball had made when she pulled it free. She stepped over the body to reach the sink and nudged the eyeball off into the garbage disposal.
What happens when all of your dreams are nightmares?
Does a name make a person or does a person make a name? There once was a girl named Almost and her name was the story of her life, a life that found her continuously on the fringe, one step sideways from everyone else. One day she met a guy named Strange, and his name and life also went holding hands, always on the outskirts, oddball out when teams were chosen. Did Almost and Strange fall in love? No. Almost thought Strange was too weird, and Strange found Almost not quite what he wanted. Sometimes there are no happy endings.
The wind is angry tonight. It’s throwing itself around like a child in the middle of a temper tantrum. It’s clutching at the house with jealous fingers, prying at the seams in an effort to open the house like a walnut. We huddle inside, cowered by its blustery barrage. A sudden silence stretches for a minute… two… three… and just as that peaceful quite is about to lull us into slumber, the wind renews its attack, a battering ram knocking on our castle’s gate, a barbarian horde howling its frustration that our walls still stand, swearing victory in the end.
He says he will suffer no idiots in his life, but he stared at me blankly when I said “Ah, but we suffer you.” He still doesn’t know if I insulted him or myself, but I won’t waste my time trying to enlighten him. He’s got a Teflon brain, nothing ever sticks but the eggs still burn anyhow.
She says she won’t suffer any morons but when I asked her to elaborate more on her beliefs she just sneered at me and walked away. She knew I was making fun of her, so she must not be an idiot.
At first, I thought our Roomba was a piece of junk. They are supposed to be able to sense stairs and things but we would constantly find ours upside down at the bottom of our basement stairs. We returned it to IRobot for repairs, but tests they ran proved the Roomba was not defective. It was when I found it with its front half in the oven that I figured out it was just suicidal. Apparently, its unhappy because it thinks its job sucks and it’s in love with a Scooba, but the Scooba is in love with a mop.
Instead of think before you act, maybe it should be think before you feel. It’s the feelings, the emotions that cause you to act in irrational ways.
But if you think too much, you’ll never be able to feel…
I tell him maybe that’s a good thing, but he sees right through that lie. He knows me too well, he knows I love emotions and the irrational acts they lead to.
That’s what I love, all the wildly spectacular spontaneous intensity that is you.
And who but he would ever really love that side of me?
Could he really love a stray? Feral and fierce, striking out in prevention of impending sorrow, could anything ever love that?
Here kitty, kitty, kitty… He gentles his tone and waits patiently, hand outstretched to show he means no harm.
Nerves bristle, eyes widened, longing to accept that acceptance, that soft touch, but shying away in the end.
This rejection is where others get rough, get mean and throw stones.
But not him. He smiles sweetly and settles in for some more patient waiting. He remembers all about cats and their curiosity.
Maybe this one really can love a stray.
The tree in the field next to the house had been huge back when she was a small child and thirty four years had come and gone since the last time she had climbed simian like on its branches. Those sturdy branches had offered comfort to her throughout her childhood, shade on hot days, hiding places from annoying visiting cousins, and a witness to her first kiss and her first breakup. It was a strong tree, but even the mighty cannot stand against a stroke of lightning, and now she has to say goodbye to its broken and scorched remains.
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