Caged

Caged I was up all night and well into the morning trying to write, so of course I couldn’t sleep after. The sun was already up which never makes it easy even with the blinds closed. I kept tossing and turning while feeling depressed and delirious. The sun was creeping desperately through the cracks, so I drew back the blinds and allowed the light to fill the room. My lack of sleep wasn’t the sun’s fault, so why should it be punished? I laid there looking out the window at the house across the street. A dog lives in the front yard of this house. Not the same house where the gang members were evicted, the one right next-door. It’s a mustard colored building with chipped paint and a brick porch. That dog was the first life that greeted me here on Walton Street. That first night, I was alarmed by the vicious sounds of barking as I unexpectedly locked eyes with it right after getting out of my car. He scared the living shit out of me, which is probably why I decided to stay and rent the room. All my fear was gone. As time went by living at this house in the ghetto, I became grateful for the dog. His voice became a constant alert that a stranger was out there on our sidewalks. A sound that initially seemed vicious, somehow became comforting. I sat there this morning staring at the dog, caged behind a fence in […]

Continue Reading →

Just the Tip

Just the Tip   I walked inside and found Michael Tree sitting naked on the toilet in the dark with candles lit. Christ, I just had an absurd night and now I’m about to walk in on this motherfucker masturbating. Or doing some weird Ashevillian witchcraft meditation. The world won’t let me rest. I slowly tip-toed toward the hallway attempting to sneak into my bedroom. He must have heard the front door shut, because when I looked up again he was staring directly at me in between groans. “Take me to the hospital, I had bad milk.” That’s when I noticed a trashcan filled with vomit on the bathroom floor. “Okay man, sure. But wait. Try a gatorade first. And bad milk? Are you sure you aren’t drunk?” I was drunk and I was sure. Drunker than I’d been in a while. Drunk enough to wind up in a vault somewhere Downtown with my egg-shaker and a nice boy who I didn’t bother warning about my fickle heart. I felt like I was just getting back from Shoprite Bar in Jersey. Nothing gets me drunker than Shoprite Bar. “And I ate some mushrooms. They might have been bad too.” “I KNEW it. This organic food you are always raving about must be just as poisonous as everything else. Or maybe it has something to do with all of the flies laying babies on the food left in the kitchen.” “No. Psychedelic mushrooms.” He continued to throw up into the bucket. […]

Continue Reading →

Blood and Bukowski

Blood and Bukowski   I felt the lids of my eyes start to swell as I reached back into the cab and grabbed the three crumpled dollar bills my drunken friend left behind. The ride was already paid for, but she felt it necessary to throw more torn currency against the leather seat while we stumbled onto the pavement. Clutching her arm, I did my best in navigating us through the entrance of “The Yotel”. It was dark here too, almost as dark as the bar had been, only rather than a crowd of drunken countenances, neon lights flashed across my vision and made the room glow in angry shades of violet. I attempted to choke down my tears for the moment, but it’s nearly impossible to swallow such feelings when your throat is the heart’s closest neighbor. So there we were drunk, in the middle of an enraged purple room, and I was trying to stop crying while my friend was trying to remember how to walk. One of the hotel attendants, a short man wearing designer glasses and an unkempt beard, immediately noticed our state of belligerence. He silently motioned with a head nod to a row of computer screens. I almost found this comical even through my misery because his beard protruded off his face like a curly arrow as he nodded. This was where we were supposed to check-in. I should have known. It is 2014 after all, and we were standing in the middle of […]

Continue Reading →

On Traffic Jams

Yesterday I was stuck in traffic for two hours in Pennsylvania. At first it wasn’t so bad because I had a box full of cereal bars and an awesome CD I found in my center console that Matt K made me a while back. After the first half hour, I started to get a little anxious because it became apparent that this wasn’t a minor “rubber necking” matter and I had to urinate, or I should say spike a serious piss. Another half hour passed, and the songs on the CD no longer cheered me up. I became mad at every lyric blaring from my speakers as if those talented poetic souls were the ones that intentionally filled my bladder during the traffic jam from hell. I looked to my left, an old married couple looked at me with the same discomfort and I mouthed to them, “I have to pee.” They laughed and nodded enthusiastically which made me laugh in return and gave me the courage I needed. So I sat there, and as the left lane inched by and the married couple disappeared, an Asian man was now next to me. I sat there as I peed in a water bottle and smiled at him. He smiled back clueless, and waved. Moral of the story and a life lesson I think we all need to come to terms with: Sometimes when people are smiling at you, they really could just be pissing.

Continue Reading →

Glass Containing Glass

My mother collects washed glass. I’m staring at a vase full of it this very moment. Glass containing glass. I’m going to get up off my ass and go grab a handful. It’s been a while since I’ve touched such an object. It’s strange really. The multi-colored rocks that these pieces of glass have turned into are powdered with whatever healing powers the ocean might possess. I can’t help but think about the origin of each individual shard. I wonder how many of them were the result of someone’s anger. Turning these pieces over in my hands, I picture a person overwhelmed with a rage brought on by unrequited love violently tossing the remains of his or her alcohol hopelessly into the sea. I can see these glass bottles- the brown, gray, blue, green, glass bottles- drowning beneath the current and shattering helplessly without choice. It’s strange really. Perhaps the sea recognized the innocence of these objects, and for this reason gave them the gift of rebirth. A new beginning, if you will. A fresh start, powdered with a healing sort of beauty that only the most open minded of people-like my mother-would appreciate. Glass containing glass: for the viewing pleasures of spectators, seems to be a better fate than others.  

Continue Reading →

Eight Rings of Regretful Truth (When Nobody’s Watching)

The other night, or I should say early morning, I was sprawled out on my couch randomly surfing the web when I came across a writing contest that sparked my interest. Usually, it takes a lot for my mind to be entertained during the episodes of insomnia that I often experience, so the extent of this interest was in fact genuine. The contest was to write in 50 words or less something that the given writing prompt might inspire. The prompt read: “When nobody’s watching…” Initially, I started thinking of typical life situations that might illustrate this description such as masterbation, nose picking, things people do in the bathroom, etc… Each of those ideas bored me to tears so I wrote the following instead.                                                       Eight Rings of Regretful Truth (When Nobody’s Watching) Drunk, driven by the blue of dawn- hands shaking again His mind, a mess of colliding images- recreates memories of fallen men. And yet Sea still outstretches simultaneously with Sky competing for Sun’s affection! Bells ring eight times, below new men scurry- while he watches his brass reflection.

Continue Reading →

My Friend that made More

I’ve become acquaintances with a spider outside my house-one that’s made a home. A spider I’ve gotten to know on the nights I feel most alone. Striped with signs of poison-most would only recognize its danger. And yet even that sort of knowledge fails to convince me that we’re strangers. I’ve kneeled too many times-motioning the censored lights to obey my will. One night I even witnessed my eight legged friend mummify his kill. I watched the prey as it spun-an intricate web of life and death. The venomous nature of my acquaintance should have subtracted me of my breath. But kneeling there inspecting the web-I thought of my life today and how it was before, How could I possibly feel anything but respect for a spider that just arrived and has already made something more?

Continue Reading →

On Writing

Handing a person a pen and paper eliminates the mundane boundaries of everyday conversation. There is no longer the need for routine dialogue. No one cares-or pretends to care about the weather. Even the bar regulars, when given the chance won’t pretend that the craft beer is what brought them there. All it takes is a blank piece of paper and a bit of silencing the world to influence writing. Regardless of what one has learned, writing is not a sport solely for the creative. It is, and has been for centuries, a pracitce for those that feel more and are heard less. That fact alone proves pen and paper the most suitable of tools to define humanity.

Continue Reading →

Thanking the Fog

Tonight I drove home on a familiar road that I rarely travel. The fog was so thick I found myself squinting to make out those yellow lines that dance permanently across the pavement despite a weatherman’s forecast. While tiring my vision, an endless canvas of gray interrupted my attempt to focus on anything that wasn’t a couple feet ahead of me. Now this may be inaccurate, but I’m assuming most people drove home tonight cursing that fog. The reason I assume this may be true is because they were forced to be cautious of their instincts despite the familiarity of direction. Driving home tonight, amongst other things, I thanked the fog for understanding.

Continue Reading →

Summer Folds

Summer Folds A Wednesday night in early autumn. With traces of summer still lingering in the air, she outstretched her arm and allowed the wind to fight against it. The warm breath of a confused season ran through her fingertips, reminding her of how things had been months before. She didn’t know where they were headed-with him she rarely did. Driving along the freeway, she watched the white lines skip across the pavement like bullets being fired through an invisible shotgun. For a moment, after glancing down at his fingers laced through her own, a feeling of uncertainty interrupted her thoughts. She quickly forced herself back to reality-there wasn’t time for thoughts such as those. Veering right they took the next exit-somewhere between the town she was born and places she’d never seen. He whispered, “Come on, we’re here.” and she followed in silence. They weren’t alone. Two other groups of people had made the same decision to venture out to this scenic destination. Across the Hudson River, neon lights flickered in competition with the stars, overcoming her with the same surge of inspiration she felt every time she saw the New York City skyline. They sat on a rock in between the two groups of people, and despite the beauty laid out before them, she found herself wondering what had driven these strangers to come here on this night. Possible details of their unknown stories zigzagged through her mind, distracting her from his presence. He placed his hand on […]

Continue Reading →