On my fourteenth birthday, my father took me to a prostitute. When we left, he slapped me on the back and said, now, my son, you are a man. He didn’t ask any questions. So, I didn’t tell him how the woman failed in her attempts to excite me. How she got frustrated then angry then contemptuous. I didn’t tell him how she called me all the same things the boys at school did – the reason he brought me there in the first place, I suspect. I didn’t tell him how I begged her to stop. How I covered my ears as tears threatened to fall. How my hurt and sadness turned to anger when she went to open the door so she could go tell everyone, my father, about my…difficulty. How I jumped from the bed, grabbed her and covered her mouth with my hand to make her stop. How she bit me, so I threw her to the floor, and she hit her head. How I pounced on her, my hands around her neck, while she struggled to free herself. How, as I saw her terror, her weakness to my strength, I was able to do exactly as she'd wanted. He'd wanted. No, I didn’t tell him any of that. I just thanked him for his gift.
The rain fell fast on the rose glass. In between the window tracery it broke like a patter of tiny feet. Wetness cast a spell on the civilized world, and panic ran through the streets. The church surged in the cobble square, catching gothic waters on its vaulted back, joining the downpour with obsidian torrents that ran along its slopes. Underneath the skyward judgement, a throng of humanity rushed aside in stirs, with bleating groups dispersed all agog, clinging to building walls or sheltering under caffe overhangs. Shrieks and hands clutching at children collected along peripheral architectures, as gypsies and street urchins rushed out from shadows to fill the space, selling devilish wares. Families tarried in the deluge, waiting for the knell. Fathers intent upon the doors, unfolded their morning papers with a disaffected twirl and lifted them above to finish their unshakable stare. Frangible mothers, more profound of sentiment, languished under sopped parasols, their spirits as versicolored by the rain as the white of their dresses. Pushcarts wheeled out of frame and store owners shut up their doors. Passerby’s cut an expert path out of view, while street vendors miraculously packaged up their shops into a lumbering conveyance... and everywhere noise and men alike clambered for refuge in the scene.
At last, the bell rang brass and the doors opened in a wooden yawn. Sounds from the organ issued in the entrance, and the guests tunneled in, all in agreement: what a perfect day for damnation.
sobriety in terminal velocity
the Aloe plant had his own ideas how things should go down and he did not miss a chance to tell me. by that time the freight train was not only hurtling down the bridge, but it was actually showing signs that even at train wrecks, it was not the best approach. can't even get a derailment right, it taunted, hurtling down. i could listen to both succulant plant and the freefalling vehicle because my grip on time, allowed me to slow it down subhectively. if you saw it, you would see an immobile plant and a horrible accident, which shall have only one victim. but through the powers of concentration, i can talk to plant and vehicle as they groan and criticize.
that's the thing about inanimate ovjects. they have much to say, but only if you can slow space-time. and then they never shut up.
but i do deserve it. even though the diamond heist was dave's idea. i should've known better than to trust an empty amazon box for advice.
A Night for Adventure
You don't realize how dirty you can get on an adventure until you find yourself in the thick of it. I was no stranger to dirt or sweat when I went on my own sort of adventure, but there is something about the security and constancy of home that encourages bathing and hygiene in a way that is absent out there in the wild world. Mind you, you hardly care what you smell like while running for your life, but I digress. Suffice it to say when I stumbled into a modest little motel covered in blood and all sorts, I was made keenly aware of the issue by the expression of the young man behind the counter. Before he picked his jaw up from the floor, I managed to compose myself and calmly say, "One room, one night, please."
An Old Sailor Dreams of the Sea
For centuries sailors have heard voices in the crashing of waves and the rumble of deep ocean swells. They claim the voices belonged to the ghosts of those lost at sea, reaching out to their loved ones and trying to find their way home, or to sirens, whose haunting songs beckon mariners to a watery grave. Niall had lived a lifetime on the sea and knew this to be nothing more than nonsense and superstition. After all, ghosts can’t speak, and there’s no such thing as sirens. And if you hear the voices in the waves (may God have mercy upon you) you can know they come from something far more dangerous and dreadful than monsters or men.
In the Dark
I was in the dark and I couldn't see a thing. I fumbled around with one hand, searching for a flashlight. I finally found it laying on the floor where I had dropped it when the scream had startled me. Holding it aimed towards where I thought the door was, I flipped the switch. Nothing happened.
"The batteries must be dead," I muttered, "It would happen right now."
I took a few cautious steps towards the light switch, and stumbling over a cord, fell. I decided to crawl the rest of the way. Soon my head bumped against the wall, and I stood up. In the pitch black darkness, the feel of the wall against me was comforting. I grabbed the light switch and flipped it to the 'on' position. But instead of the room lighting up, it remained just as dark. Had the power gone out? Perhaps. It had gone dark right after that hair-raising scream I heard. I leaned against the wall and thought my situation over. If I remained in the dark much longer, I was going to go crazy! I needed some light, and I needed it NOW. As I stood there, I felt the door next to me open. No light came through it though, so I supposed that there was no light out there either.
"Frank?" a quiet voice, whispered.
"I'm right here!" I answered.
"Oh good!" there was relief in the voice, "Why aren't you coming back down? We need to get out of here."
As I took a deep breath to start explaining about the power going out, etc., my friend spoke again, "And what on earth are you doing with all the lights on? It's the middle of the night and we're not supposed to be here!"
I froze in bewilderment.
"The flashlight didn't work, so I was going to turn on the lights." I mumbled, my brain still trying to understand that line about the lights being on.
"Frank? The flashlight is working just fine. It's bright enough to light this room up by itself!"
"It's on?!? Wait, you're telling me that the lights in this room are on, and the flashlight is working?!?" I repeated with a frantic note in my voice.
I began flipping the light switch back and forth in a frenzy.
"Frank?!? What is the matter?"
A hand closed around and stopped my frantic flipping.
I pulled my hand free and sank to the floor. Staring out into the inky blackness, I whispered, "I can't see a thing..."
“I loved her. Wasn’t that enough?”
I could hear his voice waver over the phone. I knew he was sorry and I could feel his grief. I should have said something to make him feel better, to assure him it wasn’t his fault because ultimately, it wasn’t. I should have been a better person. But I was broken and angry and alone.
Through gritted teeth, I choked out, “No.”
The People I Left
The international store was as dim as a cave, dust collecting in every worn crack and crevice, as if it were falling apart from the inside-out. The people matched, cigarette ash on calloused hands and ages of words, conflict, conflicting words, etched into their faces as heavy wrinkles. As a child, the store was a respite from the majority white town my mom and I grew up in, and I would dash through the store as my mom warned me to stay close, run my little fingers through the loose produce-- garbanzos, peanuts, green almonds. I found out that the same people I now worked alongside saw me there when I was a tottling child.
Only mistake, you gave me 123 days!
Fate. What fate is? Especially when you are meeting that person?. Life brings to our lives the idea of falling for the perfect one or better it gives us the illusion that we are falling for the right one, when the truth is that falling for someone, it does not need to be the perfect one but the relation itself makes it look like the correct one. If this is how fate works, then my story is another boring romantic kind of drama movie that happened to be written. Because what is coming to this story, is a poetic life of Romeo and Juliet only in the 21st century and without the need to die. Dive into this world and see what happens or let it be another forgetful love story. Shall we begin?
No one really knew when my baby brother started to float.
My mom swears it was the time she was feeding him peas. He had knocked them on the floor, and after going to get a paper towel to clean it up, she returned to see him floating a few inches above his highchair, giggling gleefully.
Dad says that it happened first in the middle of the night. He went to check on my brother only to find him suspended above his crib, still sleeping peacefully as he revolved in slow circles.
I remember it as the time we were playing in the sandbox. I had just built the perfect sand castle, complete with four walls and a moat that wrapped around the entire thing. All of the sudden he started to rise above the sand, bobbing and tipping until he crashed down right in the middle of my creation.
The funny thing is, none of us thought of it as odd. It was just something that he did. He couldn't float more than a few inches off of whatever surface he was on, so there was no reason to tell anyone else. They would just make a big deal about it and "whisk him away to perform experiments" as my mom always said.
This is the way it has been for the last 8 years. He couldn't really control it and it doesn't happen very often anymore so we all just kind of pushed it to the backs of our minds. But now things have changed.
It was the night before school started and I was fast asleep, dreaming of seeing all of my friends and starting my first year of middle school. All of the sudden there was an agonizing scream and I awoke to my brother pinned to the ceiling above me.
His eyes were rolled into the back of his head and he was flailing around helplessly. Saliva flew from his mouth and he was breathing in huge rattling gasps. I had never seen him float so high and I was terrified, unable to comprehend what was happening.
He screamed once more and then his eyes snapped into focus, locking onto mine.
"He has a hold of me Max", my brother breathed in a terrified whisper. "He said he has blessed me with a gift and now it is time to come and show him my gratitude."
His eyes were wide with fear and I could tell he was struggling, trying to move his arms and legs but they remained splayed out on my ceiling.
Hundreds of questions were racing through my mind but before I could ask any of them, he jerked violently to the right and slammed against my wall. We were both screaming now as he skidded across the ceiling and crashed into the other wall.
He continued to be whipped around my room, as if he was a puppet attached to terrible, invisible strings. His eyes had rolled into the back of his head again, but his screams were still coming nonstop. His shirt had torn in the back and blood streaked my ceiling.
Finally he was returned to his original position above my bed.
His breathing was ragged and his arms and legs were dangling down towards me.
I reached up to try and grab him but stopped when he opened his eyes.
"Don't let him take me" he pleaded weakly, and started to sink into the ceiling as if it was a pool of liquid. He reached out to me, but before I could do anything he was pulled fully under and disappeared from sight.