A shaky-steady examination of life.
“I prefer to admire lovely weather from afar,” said the clown—removing the last of her make-up. “Walls and windows equal safety. The moment I step outside”—pausing, she draped a towel over her shoulders, then repeated: “The moment I step outside, no matter how delicate warm the sun, or soft the breeze—no matter how politely semi-silent bystanders and trees happen to sway—or how nuanced if flowery the air might be—at some point, if and when I step outside, something entirely else is bound to happen. Heatstroke, sunburn; the reek of burnt rubber; tedious hollow conversation (be it fatty or thin); bearing witness to some terrible accident…a car wreck, perhaps, or the untimely collapse of some hastily constructed building; run-ins with children, unruly mutts, or just some brash nosy bee; whatever—something nasty always happens and ruins everything. No, no: I prefer to look out through my own two windows; to skip through summer in my mind, where everything is under control, more or less, and sensible, and even, eventually, perfect—as it should be.”
Boston’s worst runners flee the finish line, fearing what they do not know.
You should wobble at least once through a pile of people, friends and strangers under the stars, watching as their made-up faces twist up to the ceiling and turn black, careful not to get too close, careful to remember that the saddest parts are always the best ones, laugh, and shy away, hide in a faraway bathroom w/ yr drink, piss into a broken toilet, look into the mirror—close the mirror and actually look—and see nothing, then check to see what’s behind, sigh like someone will hear you and care, shrug, punch a hole in the wall, drown yr face in it. What’s there?
what i hear when i hear nothing
is the sound of my own small suffering
a battle cry
death throes; a gentleman’s war
and it is quiet, and i am hungry
and i can’t stop trying to imagine perfect opposites
like, hey, Dritan says
all we have in Albania is soccer and war
then a smile, a nod
and i refill the ketchup
whisper that i hate the flag, it costs me money
but anyway i’m here
Too, you are also what you (think you) are not.
“Wasn’t it dark?”
“Could you see anything at all?”
“No, I couldn’t see anything.”
“Did it matter?”
“No. Not really. In fact, I found the darkness sort of charming.”
Notes written on napkins are just that much more disposable.