Monday, October 31, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-Eight

You've never seen a footprint like a footprint on water. It sticks to you, kind of, follows your foot up with a tiny mirror foot, like a leprechaun kicking you off his ceiling. It's weird. Nobody died or maybe he would have proved the whole back to life thing not a metaphor. I don't know. He really had the place fired up. There were people speaking without tongues and people tickling their gums and people tweaking. I wondered who forgot to spike my punch. I almost asked one of the girls rushing back and forth with trays, but then I

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-Seven

way, and the right touch with the good finger points the way back to what life ought to know from the get-go. But, c'mon, how can you forget to live? The heart remembers its business, doesn't it? Squeezing all that blood, sucking it in, squeezing it out. The lungs don't need a manual to learn the air game. So what's this about losing the will to live? It's complicated? The more complicated you are the more you got going that's going to go wrong. Sounds simple enough. We also learned how to water wine. Then step all over it.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-Six

Davey Davey. DAAAAAVEEEE THUN DURR, king of the wild BLUN DEEEER!!! You know what else old Jeez said at the Sem? He said all you need to bring somebody back to life is the right touch. I suspect he was being metaphorical. You know, the dispirited, the lifeless, those succumbing to despair, bringing life back to 'em isn't bringing life to a corpse. Or creating life ex nile crocodile like an alligator bag waking up and snapping at your manicured fingers as you dip in for the calfskin credit card keeper. It's bringing life back to itself, it's lost the

Friday, October 28, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-FIve

at the Jesus Seminar, the old man himself was telling us there was one way and one way only to shake the darkness with light. I don't know about that but I do know a way and if it's the only way then we're in my comfort zone. You take one cloud, all dark and heady, and you take another cloud, similarly full of oats, and you clap 'em together!" Davey presses a button and a sudden bang of thunder fills the room. As it fades Davey continues, "Welcome once again to the Hour of Thunder. With me, Davey. Davey

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-Four

ON-AIR light blinks to life, flickers, then applies itself to a steady amber gleam. “Hey, folks! We’ve got a great show for you tonight.” Davey squeezes the rubber bulb on the end of a horn which goes Ugga-ugh! “If you think mine is the voice of an angel, that I am speaking to you from Heaven above as the end of the world gathers you in, well, yes, I’m not. But there’s something heavenly about me. Some aspect of the divine I’ve never been able entirely to deny. Though I’ve tried! God knows, I’ve tried. Why, just the other day

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-Three

punctuation. “Welpy welpy wah. I need something dangerous. Something efficacious. Something ferocious and atrocious.” “Expialidocious?” “We are of like minds, Ugly. We are of like minds. Except that, koff koff, I, excuse me, harrup, hurrup, heeeeerrrrrrruuuuukkkkk. Sorry.” With a shake of its large head the dragon waddles down to the end of the path and out into the mist. Two enormous wings spring from its back where seemingly there had been none, and the dragon leaps into the air, a friendly good-bye lash of its tail the last part of it to be caught by the dim portico lamps. The

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-Two

dragon’s way. The dragon coughs and a puff of ash whirls out of both nostrils. “Oh dear. Dear, dear,” says the dragon, scratching behind a green ear with a black claw. “Frankly, I think the traffic, the weather, the stock market, the vegetables, and the mood on Mount Olympus have been sounding same-y lately. I think they could do with a little shaking up. A little rumba romba timba tumba. Did you like the way I rhymed ‘flooding disaster’ with ‘market forecaster’?” “I wasn’t listening.” “No?” The dragon’s wheezy chuckle preceded another series of shallow coughs and their attendant ashy

Monday, October 24, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty-One

on my way, I’m there! I’ll pop him in the snoot, that’ll show ‘im who’s the popper and who’s the popped. We will continue this another time, Ms Heaven.” Davey hops over the dog’s curl of tail on the mist-dampened stone and scoots through the studio’s open door. After a moment the dragon waddles out. “I need something poisonous.” It walks up to the Ugly Dog and rubs its long head against her shoulder. “I don’t suppose you know where a body could get an infusion? Or an explosion?” The dog raises one eyebrow and casts a sidelong look the

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Forty

About the merry-go-round ponies. And the carneys. And the magical way the ostriches and tigers and horses and zebras all come to life after the carnival closes and go cavorting about the place browsing on kettle corn and peanuts and shreds of cotton candy that the nightly winds spin along the midway. Or whatever the equivalent would be in political intrigue, the halls of power, the conferences of the deities of drink and bad behavior. Then. Then we’d catch ‘em!” “Hsst! Davey! One friggin’ minute, you pauper!” Davey rolls his eyes. “Like dead air ever killed anybody. I’m coming, I’m

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Nine

States? Isn’t that what it’s called now? In this case you’d be the priest and I’d be the child mo, I mean, I’d be the superior. Uh. After the pyromaniac tells his psychiatrist that he’s hankering to see the manes of the merry-go-round horses red with flame, the psychiatrist places an anonymous call to the halfway house where the pyromaniac sleeps every night since he was released from prison and. In this case you’d be the merry-go-round horse and I save you by strapping the pyro to his bed. And you thank me by spilling all about. About. You know.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Eight

“Sometimes you just want to yank it up by the roots! Where was I? The Elf? He cuold be useful. In a hazardous sort of accidentally beneficial way. You’ve been let in on it, haven’t you? The big secret. Oh. But you never repeat a confidence. Forgot about that part. Hm. Yeah. There must be a workaround. After the child molester tells the priest about plans to volunteer at girl washing camp the priest reports it to his superiors in order to head off a crime and priest wakes up in a parish in the Soviet Union. Coalition of Willing

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Seven

feeds ichor into City of the Industrial Divine (the fumes from the ichor had him stoned for weeks but I don’t think a drop was spilled), and before that. Before that.” “The moon unit,” says the Ugly Dog of Heaven helpfully. She is sitting in her posture of attention, which, once somebody starts talking, she really can’t avoid assuming. “Wasn’t there something between the City of the Industrial Divine thing and the moon unit?” Out the door of the first small building a long horny head pokes. “Davey! Five minutes!” The young man shakes his head. “Time, time,” he mutters.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Six

we just have to take it to the next level.” The young man takes off his English cap and scratches his blond ruff. “But how to do it. You know, I have the utmost confidence in you. And in the crew. We just have to have a plan. Since the Elf tried to ransom the future for the past, and before that tried to steal all the tea in China, and before that tried to alter our very idea of what music is with that xylophone from the left bank of Lethe, and before that cut open the artery that

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Five

We can take this thing apart. We can reassemble it in a big kind of shape thing, all new, all different, but essentially workable, only better. You have the connections. I have the vision. You do have the connections, don’t you? You know everybody. Everybody tells you their sob story. That’s so Ugly Dog, the world is sad, you know, who else will listen to you, who else will understand you but somebody with mutant wings on her back? I’ve done it. We’ve all done it. Confided in you. Laid our hearts bare. Shed a few tears. It’s natural. Now

Monday, October 17, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Four

dog closer. Then, to make sure there’s no misunderstanding, he crooks a finger and makes that little beckoning tug with it. The dog stops several feet away and wags her tail slowly and warily. The young man looks up the path, looks behind himself into the dim room, the door ajar, looks down the path to where the cover of the portico roof ends and the path goes on into the dark woods. He nods as though this all confirms a theory. He makes a move toward the dog. “We can do it, you and me, U.D. of H. Uh-huh.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Three

by shudders and shakes, eventually clearing enough to illuminate the puddles with sunset pinks,” and the traffic report, “There are vehicles on the road, you know, in sizes small and large, the slower not being the larger in every case.” Big cushy black headphones cover its pointy ears and it speaks into a fluffy green microphone. The dog pauses to watch through the heavy glass of the studio, and the dragon gives a broad wink. The door of the second building pops open as the dog approaches and a young man pokes his head out. “Psst,” he says, nodding the

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-Two

mouth. He sucks on it, its sweet, salty umami bringing an ache to his salivary glands. He hums, the waves along the wall settle into a steady rhythm. The dog leaves the room, continuing down the portico. After the main building the covered route passes soft lawns over which cool mists wander or press themselves. Two more smaller buildings adjoin the portico. In the first a small dragon, only slightly larger than the dog herself (and easily able to curl up on the back seat of a station wagon), croakily reads the weather report, “Rain in fits and starts followed

Friday, October 14, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty-One

glue and staples that hold it to earth. And it does keep up. It keeps right on up, the ripples getting bigger and closer together, the whole wall simultaneously ashudder. Quiet, though. When the ripples reach ceiling and adjoining walls they disturb nothing, might as well be an optical illusion for all the change they effect. Jack sits down again, pours himself another cup of wine. With a grunt, the Ugly Dog of Heaven gets to her feet and toddles back up the aisle and out the door. Jack retrieves the treat from the floor and pops it in his

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Thirty

the room. Has something moved? Jack jumps down from the platform over which the tapestry hangs. The draft comes again and a definite ripple passes up the wall. The tapestry hangs perfectly still. The draft is becoming a breeze and the wall, all of stone, shakes and waves roll through it, one after another. Jack closes his eyes, feeling the cool air cross his face. Does he feel a ripple pass through his body as well? Maybe. The dog eyes this new development with skepticism. She growls. If this keeps up the wall is going to pull free of the

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Nine

a murky round-pupiled eye, he’s not examining the animal so much as touching secret points. Now the nose of each knight. Jack taps the bridge then presses gently just beneath an eye. He steps back and looks over the whole cloth, rubs his chin. There’s something more, something more. He gets out that notebook again, licks a finger, and quickly pages through, one glyph in particular seems key. He walks deliberately along, looking high, looking low. He shrugs and runs a finger down a post of the unicorn paddock. He puts the notebook away. A draft stirs a corner of

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Eight

the brain pan? The music of the spheres.” So what if it doesn’t last? What does? Jack knows something about those cheap tapestries, you can tell. The knights, ardently beaming through lifted visor at the blonde ladies wearing conical beribboned hats and shaking handkerchiefs in dainty fingers; the unicorn in a paddock placidly chewing; Jonah popping out of (or into) a bearded whale; Jesus slapping around moneylenders; a pug-faced lion cuddling up with a droopy-eyed lamb. Colors clashing and bleeding. Unmended tears. But when Jack gets up and steps up to trace the lamb’s muzzle, his fingers sliding just under

Monday, October 10, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Seven

hundreds of skilled craftspeople and the million dollar budget to make something that looks good. First off, you don’t pretend what you’ve got is something it’s not. You don’t hold up tinsel and say, “Be dazzled by this precious metal!” You hold up tinsel and say, “Ooh! Don’t you love the way the light tangles in it, like it’s a cripple dancing, dancing so good you’re envious of his withered leg, you want to laugh at him, then have him fuck you until you’re afraid you’ve lost your marbles, didn’t you hear that delicious clinking as they pattered loose across

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Six

body, like a footprint, like the trail a worm leaves in mud. Most such traces wash away quickly, aren’t even seen, let alone read. But some movements, some dances, have consciousness, and you can contemplate what they leave. The world is written all over. Jack snaps the notebook shut and slips it back into the pocket. He drains the cup into his mouth and gazes up indifferently at the shoddy tapestries. They are supposed to look woven. That they don’t, that they look like poorly printed imitation weaving, is what makes them so disappointing. You don’t have to have the

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Five

had to say couldn’t easily be said with words people have long used for other business. And yet, aren’t there many languages, mutually unintelligible, and many scripts, as like to scribbles as to sentences to those not initiated into their mysteries? Have something entirely new to say? No. You really don’t. Jack looks over the work he’s teased out of the hidden depths of the page. It was there all the time, clearly, and what was necessary was the hypnotic attraction of the pen’s undulations, the pen’s not quite soundless invitation to arise. The shape describes the passage of a

Friday, October 07, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Four

seeks its own level. Jack flips open a notebook he’s pulled out of the inner pocket of his jacket. He slides the slim black pen from the elastic gripping it and jots a few notes. No, that’s too much concentration on each movement of the pen. He’s drawing? If so, the line refuses to resolve into a figure. Bored doodling? A code, runes, glyphs meant to capture meaning like spider webs? That could be it, a script seeking meaning rather than the more usual method of cutting meaning to fit the words you have at hand, as though nothing you

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Three

getting worse, they’re not getting worse faster than usual. Which is to say,” Jack pours himself a cup of wine then replaces the stone jug on the floor, “I’m taking some time to relax.” He sips at the dark and acrid wine. Up in the shadowed corners of the hall there are fissures that will never open wide enough to allow passage even of spirits. But there is one that will. More than one, perhaps. But one, at least. The wine is cold and stays cold on his tongue and moves slowly through his mouth. When he swallows the wine

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-Two

hall, her claws clicking on the paving stones. The hall is empty but for Jack, who, as always, is dressed for somewhere people notice your clothes only when you’re not wearing something that costs too much. The dog sits in the aisle next to him and he reaches into a pocket and pulls out a sealed dog treat which he opens and she ignores, even after he drops it between her feet. She looks at him instead and, as usual, he smiles. “I was there,” he says. “I was there, and it looked about the same, frankly. If things are

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty-One

Lady Dog? Should I say tomorrow will be a fine day, full of delights?” The leprechaun hits himself again. When the leprechaun continues to hit himself in the head, the dog growls. The leprechaun laughs, but not the sort of laughter anyone joins. “What is the number? What is the number, Lady Dog? Shall you guess? The last count of the leprechauns!” He sniffs, sneezes, then grabs his ankles, buries his nose between his thighs, and rolls heavily down the portico like a medicine ball. The dog gets up, but turns in the other direction, walking back toward the meeting

Monday, October 03, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Twenty

wrong.” The leprechaun pauses. The dog remains attentive. A breeze stirs the dust and a white plastic cup rolls in a circle near one of the portico’s arches. “When I say it is going to be a terrible storm. When I say that and I am right. That is bad. I do not like being right. If I say it is fine today, fine and beautiful. What then?” The leprechaun laughs. “That is the trick! I never say that! Have I ever said something good is going to happen? That we will be happy and dancing? What do you think,

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Nineteen

The leprechaun hits himself in the head again and a hair falls loose. “Whenever I am right, it’s bad. It’s bad. When I am wrong, it is better. I say it is going to be a terrible stormy day and I am wrong. It is not a terrible stormy day. It rains. But the winds don’t knock down a tree. Not one tree. I say we will go hungry. But we do not go hungry. There is fungus, a new crop, yellow and moist. We do not go hungry. I am wrong. You understand? It is good to be so

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Thousand: Five Hundred Eighteen

tidily, and she yawns. The counting gnome coughs twice. He lowers his head to the ground and listens to vibrations in the earth. His scowl lightens and he hits his head with his fists. The dog whines. The gnome sighs. “I didn’t find them all. All the leprechauns,” says the gno, oh, no, this must be the leprechaun, the one was going around counting leprechauns. “I counted four times. Each time I got the same number. Except the last time. When there was one fewer.” The leprechaun shrugs. “I wanted to count again, but I was afraid I was right.”