Flesh and Brood

Tonight, he was loathing. Deciduous loathing that foamed and frothed up to the edge of his mattress, which was his sanity, which was where he lay. Loathing so thick it flared and became smoke, and it forked from his mouth, touching everything, imparting a dirty secret on each slicked surface. Surprised, he wondered when or where he had learned to loathe like that.

* * *

On a plane, he dreamt of oranges and sex. Things he hadn’t thought about in a long time. In these dreams, there were always three distinct realities: first, the mind; second, the physical; and third, the untamed. But he never ventured further on, into the fourth. He didn’t know what the fourth was, all he knew was what shivered in his refrigerator. A bag of oranges ripening. When he opened his eyes, the plane had yet to move from the tarmac, saturnine layers of ice on each heavy wing.

* * *

No, the penchant for trenchant prose was the same as that for porcupine reeds, he declared. The distillation of filth to bladed ego, unsheathed. Somehow, we are to understand, just as it is understood that a painting of blue daubs might resemble heads, men crossing streets, exposed breasts, and dilated eyes. Yes, we are wrong. We are right. But never mind the sunset, he concluded, someday we’ll chase a rainbow for charity instead.

[Original Post Date: ??/??/2008]

Gone to Waist

I went jogging for the first time in year(s). About a quarter of a mile in, my lungs collapsed. My back began to ache. If you are perhaps contemplating this noblest of exercises, do not start the routine with a cigarette. Do not stay up late and set your alarm clock for the earliest of morns. Do not stuff your mouth with nicotine gum and chew languidly as noxious blood heaves and bubbles into your brain. You might throw up. Or you might not.

And just so you know, in each passing car, they are laughing at you. Hope is a distended thing, raw tar in a verdant bush. But I feel great.

On the Eve of Indifference

From the asthenic calm that bore the morning, the mechanic’s struggles were made clear to me. The coil, he asked for the coil. The hammer. The brass plates and the loops of silver. On and on, every raised fist a penultimate to victory. With nightfall, he lay against the wall that bordered mine, this cell by cells, and tapped out the progress of his Machine in indefinable code. Escape, he had said. And I readied my metal wings.