dolphin safe

I’m standing on a rickety pier, surrounding me throbs and swells a black angry ocean. No land in sight. The sun beating on my neck, the still empty blue sky above. I’m fishing with only a hooked line and a short thick stick. No bait. Despite the pitiful tackle, I am able to throw the 3-pronged hook far off into the rough waters. I use the stick to help me reel it in by twisting the line around it. My bare hands covered in thin red lines.
On one throw the hook lands centered in a pod of playing dolphins. I love dolphins. I immediately start to reel in the line as quickly as I can — nervous because I don’t want to catch one on the hook.
SHIT! . . . Got something! . . . please don’t be a dolphin . . . please don’t be a dolphin . . . please don’t be a dolphin . . . .
I’m frantically twisting the line around the stick — it’s dragging something, something big, something heavy. My arms, hands, and fingers strain and ache — my tension builds as the struggling creature is desperately tugged closer . . . please . . . I don’t want this to be true. Sharp pains running from my fingertips to the base of my neck. Closed eyes . . . please don’t be a dolphin . . . please . . . .
Then I see . . . it’s not a dolphin!
My dear friend, Katie! . . . the hook is through her nose!
I collapse to my knees and break out into uncontrollable tears. She reassures me that she is fine while yanking and twisting the gnarled hook from her nose and climbing from the cold black water. But it doesn’t matter. I’m devastated — reminded of every time I have unintentionally hurt someone that I love. A deep hopelessness swallows my mind as dark clouds close in and spiral violent above me. My sobs growing louder, the sky cracks open, and frigid raindrops pierce my heart. My breath becomes the turbulent surface of the untamed sea — and I vanish within everything surrounding me.

I wake gasping for air. And the lyrics of a song immediately possess my mind — they soothe and cradle my sadness as I try to fall back into sleep.

Neon Bar Rock Jump

I went up the black steps that were well lit. People waited for me as  I banged through the safetygates with the key. I opened up the roof, but it was trashed. It was night. I lay down with my head on the edge. There was a blanket. I began to talk to the person next to me.

The night was long and filled with troupes of makeuped women. I strode into a cool neon lit bar. It was long and tables filled with laughter was a scent of energy thick and deep with currents. Any one person strolling in would have had to tear a hole into the vibe in order to break it’s lush cocaine undertow. The frolicking rocked their toothy bodies. A woman with electric blue braces smiled wide as the waxing cheshire moon. Her lips were glistening candy red. I came to attack someone. I came in with violence in the heart. It was only milky arms and smiles braced and eyelashes made of feather and black liner beaded with luminescent paint. Everyone was from pandora.

I didn’t stay there. Where I went was filled with tiny animals.

The next day you and I walked in a strange town. We found a rock with a historical leap. They told of how the huge gap over the water was usually crossed by a rope swing more than seven times a day. Although it was a long way down into the water, I took the leap with the rope in hand, swinging, even kicking off against the water. I made it to the other side. You followed me. And I saw you come across. &~~

we are young supernovas

I’m in an abandoned shopping mall with two others. We’re not entirely sure what’s going on. The world seems to have stopped turning, and most people have disappeared. We’ve heard that a few, whom we don’t care for very much, are still lurking about. We have this strong inkling that it would be a terrible idea to leave the mall. It’s dangerous outside — maybe zombies, maybe thieves, maybe our arch nemeses.  But than again, it’s dangerous in the mall too. We are in it, and we’re growing more desperate every hour. The only food is a buffet table with baskets full of black putrefying bananas. The two others are good people. I know they are, but this situation is getting to us, and we are growing distant and locked into our own minds. One is male, he has short blond hair and he’s physically fit — he reminds me of my childhood friend, Justin. The other is female, named Tali, she is also fit with blond hair — I know her.

I’m walking past the buffet table, it’s on my right. I keep walking and the outside wall is gone. Crystal blue waters are lapping against the pink tile floor. The ocean has come for us. The water is shallow by the end of the mall, but there is a large sand pool just a few meters away, and a tiger stares at me hungrily from that pool. We cannot leave by sea. I quickly retreat back into the mall and see a large silo. It has no doors, but it has a ladder. I race up it to see how fast I can get off the ground — I know that tiger will come for me eventually, and it’s a safe place. I get to the top and the hatch opens, but it is small, and the roof comes to a triangular point anyway. The walls are wide, and the ladder is made of thin round metal — it’s very uncomfortable, I couldn’t last up here for more then a few minutes.
I climb down and go back deeper into the mall. I see Justin, he says “He’s coming!”, and bolts past me. I follow and when I round the corner, he’s in one of the elevators, but the door quickly closes before I get in. I don’t know where Tali is, but I hope she is well hidden in one of the hotel rooms upstairs — “He” is coming to find her really, not us.  I hide in a darkened corner for a bit, and then make my way towards the silo. As I’m walking past the buffet table “He” is there. The bananas are all yellow and plump, and he has a smirk on his face. He’s a round man of medium height, I’ve never seen him before, but just through his smile and smell I know I never want to again. He’s running his fingers over the bananas, they are a present for Tali — there’s hundreds of them. We make are way to the crystal blue waters — our eyes locked into each others’ feverish gaze. He is confident and unafraid. He standing with his back to the ocean. It is dark now and three moons hang above the water, each within its own phase. Justin is there. He begins punching the fat man on the face, the man make no motion. Justin steps to few paces left. They are both staring at me, entranced, muttering, muttering in some foreign language. The man breaks his rapture and grabs a sword out of a tall bejeweled umbrella vase and slices Justin’s right arm. He drops the sword in front of himself pleased and fearless of retaliation. He raises his shirt to reveal his round belly as a meaty grin stretches across his face. Justin grabs the sword and slices him longways just above his bellybutton. At first nothing . . . and then a thin red line appears, and then it opens wider and wider, redder and wider — then streams of blood and gobs of guts gush out of him. He collapses to the floor unnaturally, like a Jacob’s Ladder. Eyeballs and living rats slither out of his ghastly wound. His face is white, mouth agape; his skin wrinkly and thin, hanging off his bones, too big for his deflated body.
We race back to the elevators and call for Tali. We decide it’s time to brave the greater world.

We’re in a truck driving through a small town. People are about. Nothing seems wrong.
Is nothing wrong? Were we wrong??
I see my friend Rachel, and tell her to climb into the truck, she does and we start driving out of town. With her she brings a peace that we’ve forgotten. The road vanishes and we are speeding through a field of large flowers, every peddle a different color; and although it is night, their glimmer is spectacular. They seem pixelated, as if we are in a digital film or video game. I look behind us and the flowers are fine, our tires do not crush them. We are light and laughing and quickly approaching the ocean and its moons — with no intention of slowing down when we meet them. ♨

night knife life

It is night. I walking around with my brother Bobby and former housemate Michelle. We are in one of those uncomfortable American hybrid urban/suburban environments. I don’t know how late it is, but there is no one in the streets, and only white vans are parked all around. Michelle asks us to accompany her to a dodgy fast food place a few blocks away. She wants a burger. We agree and follow her. As we approach the yellow glowing “Burger Chase” a nervousness creeps up my spine.
I’m barefoot, and before we enter I see the floors are grimy and wet, as well as one of those “no shirt, no shoes, no service” decals on the door. I hesitate entering at first, but do anyway thinking the employees won’t really give a shit about my feet, and that I will just wash them soon after. When we go in I see to my right a row of booths, each closed in by waist high glass doors and filled with water reaching just above ankle height. People are sloshing around in the water and eating. I find it strange and gross, but try not to stare.  The ordering counter runs the full length of the place and red crudely handwritten signs are taped the whole way down. There is a door at the opposite end. As we walk down the counter I read the signs. They say, “Put all of your belongings on the counter. You will be cut by a large knife if you don’t. If you try to escape or look panicked you will be cut”.
I’m pissed. How did we walk into this trap? The people behind the counter are freakishly tall, but don’t necessarily look mean, they almost seem as if they too are following silent orders. A person who was eating in one of the nasty water booths walks out the door I’m standing next too. I step out and motion to my brother to come. He hesitates but my persistent looks get him to leave. I think about Michelle for a moment, but knew that if I tried to get her to come we all would definitely be caught. I console my selfish action saying to myself that I will send help.
Bobby and I are running full speed through the darkness. The lights of a parked white van turn on, and its engine kicks on. We keep running, and don’t seem to be followed. When we get to my parents’ neighborhood Bobby begins knocking on all of the doors and telling them about the place. When no one seems to care, I wake up. ♨

catching casonico

I’m in museum that is located down in a labyrinthine sewer system. Domes of black brick and mortar are dripping water on me. A projector turns on and casts images of various demons on the wall. Some are of Hollywood and television fame, such as “Casper the Friendly Ghost” and “The Ghostbusters’ Stay Puft Marshmallow Man”. Then the name Casonico is displayed. And an odd disembodied voice begins to describe the role this demon plays in the pantheon of underworld gods. Casonico is a demon that enters the physical world through any means possible, and in modern times has taken to electronic media. He is not necessarily a “bad” demon — in fact, he enjoys teaching, but equally enjoys making you forget everything he has taught. I found it odd that this eternal demon would bother teaching the human race banal lessons and then inflicting amnesia on them soon after. I decided that I wasn’t going to let him put such a spell on me. So I willed myself awake in order to jot down his name as it was still burning on the sewer wall, in my mind.  ♨

a girl falling from a plane

I am still kind of in shock. I watched the plane transform as it passed two other planes. It roared and broke. Some one said “that’s not normal” It looked like bodies were falling. A body plummeted toward and smacked against the wall of the pool and into it. I raced toward the steps. I was on the median between two pools. I looked down at the girl. Someone offered a red foam board for transport. She was small and  conscious but not even bleeding. She was shaking. Her legs kept sticking straight up. I am dying, she said. She writhed painfully. I woke.

In the little alcove a man with brownish skin talked. The store had changed its name. It had been Trohve in hamden. Up a back stair. A woman with a child pressed so tightly into her chest wriggled into form from the sagging twin bed. Another appeared behind her, but it was a manish form that hugged me when I told him I speak arabic. It was odd. As We left to go get into the utility truuck, I saw Rupert Wolonski, head down. I said goodbye. The side of the truck said “Mannslers” or some other Germanic thing. It was the Olde tyme writing style that made me think I was part of a german company. I got into the passenger seat. The dark skinned cabbi got to the intersection again. He wanted to take me to the new side of town andl eave me there. I was indignant. What this again!? Take me to the other side of the highway and leave me by the bus stop! But still, of he goes to the left hand turn lane that takes me toward the new part of town.

Earlier I skipped a class. I watched the time 12:10, almost 12:15 I thought. I sat with my high school friend Chris H. He kept leaning toward me. He reminded me of some earlier kiss which really had never happened. I walked down fantastic stairs of some incredible design. The shag had tubes of color flaps. It was remarkable, though I don’t remember what we were saying. I was in a motel room. I was walking through a doorway, not locking it.  Musical instruments play behind him. He talked about his girlfriend. I found myself at 433 West Creek Rd. or 6266 West Creek Rd where I grew up. I was upstairs. I was reading a poster. I placed two spray bottles near Williams pillow for the cats. My pants must have fallen down. I saw a naked girl in a room laughing. There was a sauna. It was an odd misplaced sexual energy.

The people? in our paradises

“The air at 1000 feet!” J exclaims

I look to the right outside the passenger-side window into a blue crystalline cove of water with clay formations holding sparkling pools. I say nothing, but I too am amazed at what we found right near us. To the left is a huge tuft of brownish grasses and the air is vast in the landscape.   I feel a palpable hope. We are cresting a hill in a car.  We have escaped into a paradise. J is smiling. The sky is a vivid blue and everywhere I look is a sparkling water, or a formation of clay. We are walking now. There is a large conch-shell shaped formation that juts up on one side It has huge loopy openings.  I hear a familiar photographer’s voice saying a technical term from photography. I float up to get a different angle.  Looking down the long dusty road we came from in the distance, I think I make out a  white bus coming. Then I see colors in the dust which are people everywhere, and up in the high clay cliffs, people running in Jalibiyas and turbans all coming for us. Some are carrying vendor boxes. We head back. We sort of run too…Its exciting.  A short wet headed man looks up at us.  He has skin the color of a muddy river, and he is wearing a nightdress or a Jalabiya.” Happy New Year!” J says.  We are making a run for it. I don’t know why we are scared.

We push through double doors and are in a subway corridor.  J slides in to sit at a bench near restaurants. Two large African American men in glossy eighties Baseball jackets are sitting in front of us but I don’t look at them. I am looking at the food. I noticed some enormous grilled scallops.  You are upset about something irritating your mom did.  I sort of tune you out and listen to the people around us.

Children are complaining about their orders.  “Smaller shizzazz stew.” A boy said in a bored voice and sends his bowl of goulash back. A doe-eyed girl has a chunk of lard with black things in it on her right shoulder.  As we talk J says he has to go set up for the hootu ritual. Says he will do just about anything for Lars. This doesn’t make much sense, being that my brother Lars doesn’t do rituals that I know of.

I recall that we were home, I wondered if I smelled like sex. I was dressed and ready for work and thinking I might not go.  Still, I went to work at school on a Wednesday, even though I didn’t work on Wednesdays. I had gone into an office where my old principal was sitting in a roly-chair. I was stapling my credit card readout like one does in waiting tables at the end of the night. I asked her for the tape and began to put it back in the drawer until I realized it had been to the right of the computer keyboard before. I felt as though she was disappointed and shamed me.  “Its wednesday, I didn’t have to come to work.” I said, in my defense. “I was surprised to see you.” she replied.  Earlier I had sat in the back of a class, broken up a fight even. In the classroom, I had asked a question about having a cultural day. I was braiding a left chunk of my hair as I spoke, and forgot my question, so I asked about hair braiding. I wanted to know if we could all braid our hair like Dion. I could see the students in front of me. I could feel my blond hair in my fingers.  It was an awkward question toward the end of class. I could tell the teacher did not appreciate the distracted opening into chaos. A few rows up, a girl I haven’t seen in more than fifteen years was saying she would like to have her hair braided too.

When I left the classroom, I entered a place of smooth dark glossy over-buffed floors and brick walls. I saw that under a ladder, a box of wine had broken. A few Latina women tittered about the spill.  I smiled even though the specific funny word that raised her eyebrows meant nothing to me.  There was a cleaning up and everything seemed cleared away and pushed back to reveal space. It all had to do with a man with a forgettable name.

&~~