- I woke up with a dull-cymbal shakiness in my hands. A Zach Hill sonnet echoed from my palms leaning over my desk. My wrists bent under the weight of a light three hour sleep full of heady nightmares congested with robotic CEOs with shining skin and glaring cat eyes who sit in dark 1980s Manhattan hotel rooms.
- Stepping on to the subway with a dry throat, an empty stomach, and twitching feet; I’d never felt claustrophobic in my own shoes before, or at least never felt so conscious of it. Six more stops above ground.
- Early afternoon I watched an old Italian seamstress demystify a bag of dark purple grapes. She sat there with the stuffed ziplock and a piece of paper towel that she used to collect the skin of the fruit after she stripped the color off each one. I think she’s a serial killer.
It’s gonna be tomorrow.
No further than Kathleen’s open palm did Elliot have to search for his misplaced blue handkerchief. Earlier that afternoon he was deepening his breathes in an shallow attempt to relieve some of the stress of losing his family’s only heirloom, but there it was, produced after a long ahh and a quick choo from Kathleen’s red chaffing nostrils. She’d swiped it from his back pocket minutes before they took for the woods for their usual Sunday hike to a specific ring of six Evergreens three-quarters the way up Sugar Loaf Mountain.
They liked hiking up mountains in the winter after a fresh snowfall. Gone were the old WPA trails that bent close to beauty-challenged backyards of plastic sided commuter homes. Gone were the traces of strewn 355 ml tins left by the unappreciative, jort wearing lunatics from outta town. “I’m mad, but I’m also not going to pick this up.” Elliot said, hoping it’d come off more humorous than sad. Whatever, he didn’t have a trash bag handy. Maybe someone should consider leaving one in a tree?
It’d take longer to get to the holy top of Sugar Loaf, but coming down was a treat. Kathleen bought oversized snow pants to fit over the layers of long johns and sweats because getting back to the car was a mad dash on their ass. It was a Watterson strip IRL. Elliot and Kathleen would find the steepest dips into the clearest straightaways— gliding over the snow, grabbing trees around them to maneuver around rocky cliffs or to check their speed.
Heated seats and a short drive back home to a roaring fire in a cast iron stove didn’t diminish the bright pink and red in their butt cheeks nor the numb tingle that lasted well into their downblanket-cusioned
"rompus coitus" (as their childhood friend with asbergers friend called it) lovemaking. A post-“mountain-bumming” necessity.
Jody threw the hammered dulcimer into the smoldering fire. He stared down as the instrument warped and turned black. The strings snapped, curling with the smoke as the ash blanketed the surrounding snow and the foot prints of the previous nights’ party.
- Acquaintance: I live with my boyfriend. He's in a band that had one hit a while ago. Maybe you know it.
- Me: Time Of Your Life?
- Acquaintance: No..?
- BOC: Flagpole Sitta??
- Acquaintance: Huh, no. I don't get what you guys are referencing!
"Avoid your generations proclivity for irony and negativity, held so commonly. Don’t let me down, son!"