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A  Dec 2017
Bulletin board
A Dec 2017
The sky is light blue and is pleasant to the eye, hospital lights are harsh and white, almost blinding and intense.
I lived as a silhouette, a shadow of everyone else, shortened at noon and lengthening in mornings, depending on the light, and like it was my self esteem.
I loved in the corners, silently. Looking at people and trying to know who they are from the way their hands moved in a conversation and the tiniest smile they’d have on their face when they talked about their passions.
I loved with all my heart, from the darker corners, so nobody knew.
I was a bulletin board, one where everyone came to hang their accomplishments on, I was the board that made everyone feel amazing and special, ignoring the stab of the pin and the hurt it caused when they put it on me.
I was a bulletin board, one where everyone looked at and felt motivated, one some would use for comparison, one that was always there, never changing, always being poked with new pins from all these wonderful people.
I was a bulletin board up until there came a day where everyone left, no one came poking and showing their pride, no one came to boast about their works. I was left and abandoned.
It was that day that I ripped them all off of me, hearing the tears and the echoes of the falling pins on the floor, feeling the tears that had fell from my eyes when I squeaked and rattled trying to break free from the wall, I was not a bulletin board anymore, I was a person with hopes and dreams.
And yet the pin holes never mended, they all sat gaping, never closing up, n filled.
The day I turned human my insecurities broke me apart, I was left a disfigured body and a deformed spirit.
Oh how I wish I could go back to being a bulletin board.
Just a little something that I wrote while feeling emotional
Like a psychotic docent in the wilderness,
I will not speak in perfect Ciceronian cadences.
I draw my voice from a much deeper cistern,
Preferring the jittery synaptic archive,
So sublimely unfiltered, random and profane.
And though I am sequestered now,
Confined within the walls of a gated, golf-coursed,
Over-55 lunatic asylum (for Active Seniors I am told),
I remain oddly puerile,
Remarkably refreshed and unfettered.  
My institutionalization self-imposed,
Purposed for my own serenity, and also the safety of others.
Yet I abide, surprisingly emancipated and frisky.
I may not have found the peace I seek,
But the quiet has mercifully come at last.

The nexus of inner and outer space is context for my story.
I was born either in Brooklyn, New York or Shungopavi, Arizona,
More of intervention divine than census data.
Shungopavi: a designated place for tribal statistical purposes.
Shungopavi: an ovine abbatoir and shaman’s cloister.
The Hopi: my mother’s people, a state of mind and grace,
Deftly landlocked, so cunningly circumscribed,
By both interior and outer Navajo boundaries.
The Navajo: a coyote trickster people; a nation of sheep thieves,
Hornswoggled and landlocked themselves,
Subsumed within three of the so-called Four Corners:
A 3/4ths compromise and covenant,
Pickled in firewater, swaddled in fine print,
A veritable swindle concocted back when the USA
Had Manifest Destiny & mayhem on its mind.

The United States: once a pubescent synthesis of blood and thunder,
A bold caboodle of trooper spit and polish, unwashed brawlers, Scouts and      
Pathfinders, mountain men, numb-nut ne'er-do-wells,
Buffalo Bills & big-balled individualists, infected, insane with greed.
According to the Gospel of His Holiness Saint Zinn,
A People’s’ History of the United States: essentially state-sponsored terrorism,
A LAND RUSH grabocracy, orchestrated, blessed and anointed,
By a succession of Potomac sharks, Great White Fascist Fathers,
Far-Away-on-the Bay, the Bay we call The Chesapeake.
All demented national patriarchs craving lebensraum for God and country.
The USA: a 50-state Leviathan today, a nation jury-rigged,
Out of railroad ties, steel rails and baling wire,
Forged by a litany of lies, rapaciousness and ******,
And jaw-torn chunks of terra firma,
Bites both large and small out of our well-****** Native American ***.

Or culo, as in va’a fare in culo (literally "go do it in the ***")
Which Italian Americans pronounce as fongool.
The language center of my brain,
My sub-cortical Broca’s region,
So fraught with such semantic misfires,
And autonomic linguistic seizures,
Compel acknowledgement of a father’s contribution,
To both the gene pool and the genocide.
Columbus Day:  a conspicuously absent holiday out here in Indian Country.
No festivals or Fifth Avenue parades.
No excuse for ethnic hoopla. No guinea feast. No cannoli. No tarantella.
No excuse to not get drunk and not **** your sister-in-law.
Emphatically a day for prayer and contemplation,
A day of infamy like Pearl Harbor and 9/11,
October 12, 1492: not a discovery; an invasion.

Growing up in Brooklyn, things were always different for me,
Different in some sort of redskin/****/****--
Choose Your Favorite Ethnic Slur-sort of way.
The American Way: dehumanization for fun and profit.
Melting *** anonymity and denial of complicity with evil.
But this is no time to bring up America’s sordid past,
Or, a personal pet peeve: Indian Sovereignty.
For Uncle Sam and his minions, an ever-widening, conveniently flexible concept,
Not a commandment or law,
Not really a treaty or a compact,
Or even a business deal.  Let’s get real:
It was not even much in the way of a guideline.
Just some kind of an advisory, a bulletin or newsletter,
Could it merely have been a free-floating suggestion?
Yes, that’s it exactly: a suggestion.

Over and under halcyon American skies,
Over and around those majestic purple mountain peaks,
Those trapped in poetic amber waves of wheat and oats,
Corn and barley, wheat shredded and puffed,
Corn flaked and milled, Wheat Chex and Wheaties, oats that are little Os;
Kix and Trix, Fiber One, and Kashi-Go-Lean, Lucky Charms and matso *****,
Kreplach and kishka,
Polenta and risotto.
Our cantaloupe and squash patch,
Our fruited prairie plain, our delicate ecological Eden,
In balance and harmony with nature, as Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce instructs:
“These white devils are not going to,
Stop ****** and killing, cheating and eating us,
Until they have the whole ******* enchilada.
I’m talking about ‘from sea to shining sea.’”

“I fight no more forever,” Babaloo.
So I must steer this clunky keelboat of discovery,
Back to the main channel of my sad and starry demented river.
My warpath is personal but not historical.
It is my brain’s own convoluted cognitive process I cannot saavy.
Whatever biochemical or—as I suspect more each day—
Whatever bio-mechanical protocols govern my identity,
My weltanschauung: my world-view, as sprechen by proto-Nazis;
Putz philosophers of the 17th, 18th & 19th century.
The German intelligentsia: what a cavalcade of maniacal *******!
Why is this Jew unsurprised these Zarathustra-fueled Übermenschen . . .
Be it the Kaiser--Caesar in Deutsch--Bismarck, ******, or,
Even that Euro-*****,  Angela Merkel . . . Why am I not surprised these Huns,
Get global grab-*** on the sauerbraten cabeza every few generations?
To be, or not to be the ***** bullgoose loony: GOTT.

Biomechanical protocols govern my identity and are implanted while I sleep.
My brain--my weak and weary CPU--is replenished, my discs defragmented.
A suite of magnetic and optical white rooms, cleansed free of contaminants,
Gun mounts & lifeboat stations manned and ready,
Standing at attention and saluting British snap-style,
Snap-to and heel click, ramrod straight and cheerful: “Ready for duty, Sir.”
My mind is ravenous, lusting for something, anything to process.
Any memory or image, lyric or construct,
Be they short-term dailies or deeply imprinted.
Fixations archived one and all in deep storage time and space.
Memories, some subconscious, most vaporous;
Others--the scary ones—eidetic: frighteningly detailed and extraordinarily vivid.
Precise cognitive transcripts; recollected so richly rife and fresh.
Visual, auditory, tactile, gustatory, and olfactory reloads:
Queued up and increasingly re-experienced.

The bio-data of six decades: it’s all there.
People, countless, places and things cataloged.
Every event, joy and trauma enveloped from within or,
Accessed externally from biomechanical storage devices.
The random access memory of a lifetime,
Read and recollected from cerebral repositories and vaults,
All the while the entire greedy process overseen,
Over-driven by that all-subservient British bat-man,
Rummaging through the data in batches small and large,
Internal and external drives working in seamless syncopation,
Self-referential, at times paradoxical or infinitely looped.
“Cogito ergo sum."
Descartes stripped it down to the basics but there’s more to the story:
Thinking about thinking.
A curse and minefield for the cerebral:  metacognition.

No, it is not the fact that thought exists,
Or even the thoughts themselves.
But the information technology of thought that baffles me,
As adaptive and profound as any evolution posited by Darwin,
Beyond the wetware in my skull, an entirely new operating system.
My mental and cultural landscape are becoming one.
Machines are connecting the two.
It’s what I am and what I am becoming.
Once more for emphasis:
It is the information technology of who I am.
It is the operating system of my mental and cultural landscape.
It is the machinery connecting the two.
This is the central point of this narrative:
Metacognition--your superego’s yenta Cassandra,
Screaming, screaming in your psychic ear, your good ear:

“LISTEN:  The machines are taking over, taking you over.
Your identity and train of thought are repeatedly hijacked,
Switched off the main line onto spurs and tangents,
Only marginally connected or not at all.
(Incoming TEXT from my editor: “Lighten Up, Giuseppi!”)
Reminding me again that most in my audience,
Rarely get past the comic page. All righty then: think Calvin & Hobbes.
John Calvin, a precocious and adventurous six-year old boy,
Subject to flights of 16th Century French theological fancy.
Thomas Hobbes, a sardonic anthropomorphic tiger from 17th Century England,
Mumbling about life being “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short.”
Taken together--their antics and shenanigans--their relationship to each other,
Remind us of our dual nature; explore for us broad issues like public education;
The economy, environmentalism & the Global ****** Thermometer;
Not to mention the numerous flaws of opinion polls.



And again my editor TEXTS me, reminds me again: “LIGHTEN UP!”
Consoling me:  “Even Shakespeare had to play to the groundlings.”
The groundlings, AKA: The Rabble.
Yes. Even the ******* Bard, even Willie the Shake,
Had to contend with a decidedly lowbrow copse of carrion.
Oh yes, the groundlings, a carrion herd, a flying flock of carrion seagulls,
Carrion crow, carrion-feeders one and all,
And let’s throw Sheryl Crow into the mix while we’re at it:
“Hit it! This ain't no disco. And it ain't no country club either, this is L.A.”  

                  Send "All I Wanna Do" Ringtone to your Cell              

Once more, I digress.
The Rabble:  an amorphous, gelatinous Jabba the Hutt of commonality.
The Rabble: drunk, debauched & lawless.
Too *****-delicious to stop Bill & Hilary from thinking about tomorrow;
Too Paul McCartney My Love Does it Good to think twice.

The Roman Saturnalia: a weeklong **** fest.
The Saturnalia: originally a pagan kink-fest in honor of the deity Saturn.
Dovetailing nicely with the advent of the Christian era,
With a project started by Il Capo di Tutti Capi,
One of the early popes, co-opting the Roman calendar between 17 and 25 December,
Putting the finishing touches on the Jesus myth.
For Brooklyn Hopi-***-Jew baby boomers like me,
Saturnalia manifested itself as Disco Fever,
Unpleasant years of electrolysis, scrunched ***** in tight polyester
For Roman plebeians, for the great unwashed citizenry of Rome,
Saturnalia was just a great big Italian wedding:
A true family blowout and once-in-a-lifetime ego-trip for Dad,
The father of the bride, Vito Corleone, Don for A Day:
“Some think the world is made for fun and frolic,
And so do I! Funicula, Funiculi!”

America: love it or leave it; my country right or wrong.
Sure, we were citizens of Rome,
But any Joe Josephus spending the night under a Tiber bridge,
Or sleeping off a three day drunk some afternoon,
Up in the Coliseum bleachers, the cheap seats, out beyond the monuments,
The original three monuments in the old stadium,
Standing out in fair territory out in center field,
Those three stone slabs honoring Gehrig, Huggins, and Babe.
Yes, in the house that Ruth built--Home of the Bronx Bombers--***?
Any Joe Josephus knows:  Roman citizenship doesn’t do too much for you,
Except get you paxed, taxed & drafted into the Legion.
For us the Roman lifestyle was HIND-*** humble.
We plebeians drew our grandeur by association with Empire.
Very few Romans and certainly only those of the patrician class lived high,
High on the hog, enjoying a worldly extravaganza, like—whom do we both know?

Okay, let’s say Laurence Olivier as Crassus in Spartacus.
Come on, you saw Spartacus fifteen ******* times.
Remember Crassus?
Crassus: that ***** twisted **** trying to get his freak on with,
Tony Curtis in a sunken marble tub?
We plebes led lives of quiet *****-scratching desperation,
A bunch of would-be legionnaires, diseased half the time,
Paid in salt tablets or baccala, salted codfish soaked yellow in olive oil.
Stiffs we used to call them on New Year’s Eve in Brooklyn.
Let’s face it: we were hyenas eating someone else’s ****,
Stage-door jackals, Juvenal-come-late-lies, a mob of moronic mook boneheads
Bought off with bread & circuses and Reality TV.
Each night, dished up a wide variety of lowbrow Elizabethan-era entertainments.  
We contemplate an evening on the town, downtown—
(cue Petula Clark/Send "Downtown" Ringtone to your Cell)

On any given London night, to wit:  mummers, jugglers, bear & bull baiters.
How about dog & **** fighters, quoits & skittles, alehouses & brothels?
In short, somewhere, anywhere else,
Anywhere other than down along the Thames,
At Bankside in Southwark, down in the Globe Theater mosh pit,
Slugging it out with the groundlings whose only interest,
In the performance is the choreography of swordplay and stale ****** puns.
Meanwhile, Hugh Fennyman--probably a fellow Jew,
An English Renaissance Bugsy Siegel or Mickey Cohen—
Meanwhile Fennyman, the local mob boss is getting his ya-yas,
Roasting the feet of my text-messaging editor, Philip Henslowe.
Poor and pathetic Henslowe, works on commission, always scrounging,
But a true patron of my craft, a gentleman of infinite jest and patience,
Spiritual subsistence, and every now and then a good meal at some,
Sawdust joint with oyster shells, and a Prufrockian silk purse of T.S. Eliot gold.

Poor, pathetic Henslowe, trussed up by Fennyman,
His editorial feet in what looks like a Japanese hibachi.
Henslowe’s feet to the fire--feet to the fire—get it?
A catchy phrase whose derivation conjures up,
A grotesque yet vivid image of torture,
An exquisite insight into how such phrases ingress the idiom,
Not to mention a scene once witnessed at a secret Romanian CIA prison,
I’d been ordered to Bucharest not long after 9/11,
Handling the rendition and torture of Habib Ghazzawy,

An entirely innocent falafel maker from Steinway Street, Astoria, Queens.
Shock the Monkey: it’s what we do. GOTO:
Peter Gabriel - Shock the Monkey/
(HQ music video) - YouTube//
www.youtube.com/
Poor, pathetic, ******-on Henslowe.


Fennyman :  (his avarice is whet by something Philly screams out about a new script)  "A play takes time. Find actors; Rehearsals. Let's say open in three weeks. That's--what--five hundred groundlings at tuppence each, in addition four hundred groundlings tuppence each, in addition four hundred backsides at three pence--a penny extra for a cushion, call it two hundred cushions, say two performances for safety how much is that Mr. Frees?"
Jacobean Tweet, John (1580-1684) Webster:  “I saw him kissing her bubbies.”

It’s Geoffrey Rush, channeling Henslowe again,
My editor, a singed smoking madman now,
Feet in an ice bucket, instructing me once more:
“Lighten things up, you know . . .
Comedy, love and a bit with a dog.”
I digress again and return to Hopi Land, back to my shaman-monastic abattoir,
That Zen Center in downtown Shungopavi.
At the Tribal Enrolment Office I make my case for a Certificate of Indian Blood,
Called a CIB by the Natives and the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs.
The BIA:  representing gold & uranium miners, cattle and sheep ranchers,
Sodbusters & homesteaders; railroaders and dam builders since 1824.
Just in time for Andrew Jackson, another false friend of Native America,
Just before Old Hickory, one of many Democratic Party hypocrites and scoundrels,
Gives the FONGOOL, up the CULO go ahead.
Hey Andy, I’ve got your Jacksonian democracy: Hanging!
The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) mission is to:   "… enhance the quality of life, to promote economic opportunity, and to carry out the responsibility to protect and improve the trust assets of American Indians, Indian tribes, and Alaska Natives. What’s that in the fine print?  Uncle Sammy holds “the trust assets of American Indians.”

Here’s a ******* tip, Geronimo: if he trusted you,
It would ALL belong to you.
To you and The People.
But it’s all fork-tongued white *******.
If true, Indian sovereignty would cease to be a sick one-liner,
Cease to be a blunt force punch line, more of,
King Leopold’s 19th Century stand-up comedy schtick,
Leo Presents: The **** of the Congo.
La Belgique mission civilisatrice—
That’s what French speakers called Uncle Leo’s imperial public policy,
Bringing the gift of civilization to central Africa.
Like Manifest Destiny in America, it had a nice colonial ring to it.
“Our manifest destiny [is] to overspread the continent,
Allotted by Providence for the free development,
Of our yearly multiplying millions.”  John L. O'Sullivan, 1845

Our civilizing mission or manifest destiny:
Either/or, a catchy turn of phrase;
Not unlike another ironic euphemism and semantic subterfuge:
The Pacification of the West; Pacification?
Hardly: decidedly not too peaceful for Cochise & Tonto.
Meanwhile, Madonna is cash rich but disrespected Evita poor,
To wit: A ****** on the Rocks (throwing in a byte or 2 of Da Vinci Code).
Meanwhile, Miss Ciccone denied her golden totem *****.
They snubbed that little guinea ****, didn’t they?
Snubbed her, robbed her rotten.
Evita, her magnum opus, right up there with . . .
Her SNL Wayne’s World skit:
“Get a load of the unit on that guy.”
Or, that infamous MTV Music Video Awards stunt,
That classic ***** Lip-Lock with Britney Spears.

How could I not see that Oscar snubola as prime evidence?
It was just another stunning case of American anti-Italian racial animus.
Anyone familiar with Noam Chomsky would see it,
Must view it in the same context as the Sacco & Vanzetti case,
Or, that arbitrary lynching of 9 Italian-Americans in New Orleans in 1891,
To cite just two instances of anti-Italian judicial reach & mob violence,
Much like what happened to my cousin Dominic,
Gang-***** by the Harlem Globetrotters, in their locker room during halftime,
While he working for Abe Saperstein back in 1952.
Dom was doing advance for Abe, supporting creation of The Washington Generals:
A permanent stable of hoop dream patsies and foils,
Named for the ever freewheeling, glad-handing, backslapping,
Supreme Commander Allied Expeditionary Force (SCAEF), himself,
Namely General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the man they liked,
And called IKE: quite possibly a crypto Jew from Abilene.

Of course, Harry Truman was my first Great White Fascist Father,
Back in 1946, when I first opened my eyes, hung up there,
High above, looking down from the adobe wall.
Surveying the entire circular kiva,
I had the best seat in the house.
Don’t let it be said my Spider Grandmother or Hopi Corn Mother,
Did not want me looking around at things,
Discovering what made me special.
Didn’t divine intervention play a significant part of my creation?
Knowing Mamma Mia and Nonna were Deities,
Gave me an edge later on the streets of Brooklyn.
The Cradleboard: was there ever a more divinely inspired gift to human curiosity? The Cradleboard: a perfect vantage point, an infant’s early grasp,
Of life harmonious, suspended between Mother Earth and Father Sky.
Simply put: the Hopi should be running our ******* public schools.

But it was IKE with whom I first associated,
Associated with the concept 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
I liked IKE. Who didn’t?
What was not to like?
He won the ******* war, didn’t he?
And he wasn’t one of those crazy **** John Birchers,
Way out there, on the far right lunatic Republican fringe,
Was he? (It seems odd and nearly impossible to believe in 2013,
That there was once a time in our Boomer lives,
When the extreme right wing of the Republican Party
Was viewed by the FBI as an actual threat to American democracy.)
Understand: it was at a time when The FBI,
Had little ideological baggage,
But a great appetite for secrets,
The insuppressible Jay Edgar doing his thang.

IKE: of whom we grew so, oh-so Fifties fond.
Good old reliable, Nathan Shaking IKE:
He’d been fixed, hadn’t he? Had had the psychic snip.
Snipped as a West Point cadet & parade ground martinet.
Which made IKE a good man to have in a pinch,
Especially when crucial policy direction was way above his pay grade.
Cousin Dom was Saperstein’s bagman, bribing out the opposition,
Which came mainly from religious and patriotic organizations,
Viewing the bogus white sports franchise as obscene.
The Washington Generals, Saperstein’s new team would have but one opponent,
And one sole mission: to serve as the **** of endless jokes and sight gags for—
Negroes.  To play the chronic fools of--
Negroes.  To be chronically humiliated and insulted by—
Negroes.  To run up and down the boards all night, being outran by—
Negroes.  Not to mention having to wear baggy silk shorts.



Meadowlark Lemon:  “Yeah, Charlie, we ***** that grease-ball Dominic; we shagged his guinea mouth and culo rotten.”  

(interviewed in his Scottsdale, AZ winter residence in 2003 by former ESPN commentator Charlie Steiner, Malverne High School, Class of ’67.)
                                                        
  ­                                                                 ­                 
IKE, briefed on the issue by higher-ups, quickly got behind the idea.
The Harlem Globetrotters were to exist, and continue to exist,
Are sustained financially by Illuminati sponsors,
For one reason and one reason only:
To serve elite interests that the ***** be kept down and subservient,
That the minstrel show be perpetuated,
A policy surviving the elaborate window dressing of the civil rights movement, Affirmative action, and our first Uncle Tom president.
Case in point:  Charles Barkley, Dennis Rodman & Metta World Peace Artest.
Cha-cha-cha changing again:  I am Robert Allen Zimmermann,
A whiny, skinny Jew, ****** and rolling in from Minnesota,
Arrested, obviously a vagrant, caught strolling around his tony Jersey enclave,
Having moved on up the list, the A-list, a special invitation-only,
Yom Kippur Passover Seder:  Next Year in Jerusalem, Babaloo!

I take ownership of all my autonomic and conditioned reflexes;
Each personal neural arc and pathway,
All shenanigans & shellackings,
Or blunt force cognitive traumas.
It’s all percolating nicely now, thank you,
In kitchen counter earthen crockery:
Random access memory: a slow-cook crockpot,
Bubbling through my psychic sieve.
My memories seem only remotely familiar,
Distant and vague, at times unreal:
An alien hybrid databank accessed accidently on purpose;
Flaky science sustains and monitors my nervous system.
And leads us to an overwhelming question:
Is it true that John Dillinger’s ******* is in the Smithsonian Museum?
Enquiring minds want to know, Kemosabe!

“Any last words, *******?” TWEETS Adam Smith.
Postmortem cyber-graffiti, an epitaph carved in space;
Last words, so singular and simple,
Across the universal great divide,
Frisbee-d, like a Pleistocene Kubrick bone,
Tossed randomly into space,
Morphing into a gyroscopic space station.
Mr. Smith, a calypso capitalist, and me,
Me, the Poet Laureate of the United States and Adam;
Who, I didn’t know from Adam.
But we tripped the light fantastic,
We boogied the Protestant Work Ethic,
To the tune of that old Scotch-Presbyterian favorite,
Variations of a 5-point Calvinist theme: Total Depravity; Election; Particular Redemption; Irresistible Grace; & Perseverance of the Saints.

Mr. Smith, the author of An Inquiry into the Nature
& Causes of the Wealth of Nations (1776),
One of the best-known, intellectual rationales for:
Free trade, capitalism, and libertarianism,
The latter term a euphemism for Social Darwinism.
Prior to 1764, Calvinists in France were called Huguenots,
A persecuted religious majority . . . is that possible?
A persecuted majority of Edict of Nantes repute.
Adam Smith, likely of French Huguenot Jewish ancestry himself,
Reminds me that it is my principal plus interest giving me my daily gluten.
And don’t think the irony escapes me now,
A realization that it has taken me nearly all my life to see again,
What I once saw so vividly as a child, way back when.
Before I put away childish things, including the following sentiment:
“All I need is the air that I breathe.”

  Send "The Air That I Breathe" Ringtone to your Cell  

The Hippies were right, of course.
The Hollies had it all figured out.
With the answer, as usual, right there in the lyrics.
But you were lucky if you were listening.
There was a time before I embraced,
The other “legendary” economists:
The inexorable Marx,
The savage society of Veblen,
The heresies we know so well of Keynes.
I was a child.
And when I was a child, I spake as a child—
Grazie mille, King James—
I understood as a child; I thought as a child.
But when I became a man I jumped on the bus with the band,
Hopped on the irresistible bandwagon of Adam Smith.

Smith:  “Any last words, *******?”
Okay, you were right: man is rationally self-interested.
Grazie tanto, Scotch Enlightenment,
An intellectual movement driven by,
An alliance of Calvinists and Illuminati,
Freemasons and Johnny Walker Black.
Talk about an irresistible bandwagon:
Smith, the gloomy Malthus, and David Ricardo,
Another Jew boy born in London, England,
Third of 17 children of a Sephardic family of Portuguese origin,
Who had recently relocated from the Dutch Republic.
******* Jews!
Like everything shrewd, sane and practical in this world,
WE also invented the concept:  FOLLOW THE MONEY.

The lyrics: if you were really listening, you’d get it:
Respiration keeps one sufficiently busy,
Just breathing free can be a full-time job,
Especially when--borrowing a phrase from British cricketers—,
One contemplates the sorry state of the wicket.
Now that I am gainfully superannuated,
Pensioned off the employment radar screen.
Oft I go there into the wild ebon yonder,
Wandering the brain cloud at will.
My journey indulges curiosity, creativity and deceit.
I free range the sticky wicket,
I have no particular place to go.
Snagging some random fact or factoid,
A stop & go rural postal route,
Jumping on and off the brain cloud.

Just sampling really,
But every now and then, gorging myself,
At some information super smorgasbord,
At a Good Samaritan Rest Stop,
I ponder my own frazzled neurology,
When I was a child—
Before I learned the grim economic facts of life and Judaism,
Before I learned Hebrew,
Before my laissez-faire Bar Mitzvah lessons,
Under the rabbinical tutelage of Rebbe Kahane--
I knew what every clever child knows about life:
The surfing itself is the destination.
Accessing RAM--random access memory—
On a strictly need to know basis.
RAM:  a pretty good name for consciousness these days.

If I were an Asimov or Sir Arthur (Sri Lankabhimanya) Clarke,
I’d get freaky now, riffing on Terminators, Time Travel and Cyborgs.
But this is truth not science fiction.
Nevertheless, someone had better,
Come up with another name for cyborg.
Some other name for a critter,
Composed of both biological and artificial parts?
Parts-is-parts--be they electronic, mechanical or robotic.
But after a lifetime of science fiction media,
After a steady media diet, rife with dystopian technology nightmares,
Is anyone likely to admit to being a cyborg?
Since I always give credit where credit is due,
I acknowledge that cyborg was a term coined in 1960,
By Manfred Clynes & Nathan S. Kline and,
Used to identify a self-regulating human-machine system in outer space.

Five years later D. S. Halacy's: Cyborg: Evolution of the Superman,
Featured an introduction, which spoke of:  “… a new frontier, that was not,
Merely space, but more profoundly, the relationship between inner space,
And outer space; a bridge, i.e., between mind and matter.”
So, by definition, a cyborg defined is an organism with,
Technology-enhanced abilities: an antenna array,
Replacing what was once sentient and human.
My glands, once in control of metabolism and emotions,
Have been replaced by several servomechanisms.
I am biomechanical and gluttonous.
Soaking up and breathing out the atmosphere,
My Baby Boom experience of six decades,
Homogenized and homespun, feedback looped,
Endlessly networked through predigested mass media,
Culture as demographically targeted content.

This must have something to do with my own metamorphosis.
I think of Gregor Samsa, a Kafkaesque character if there ever was one.
And though we share common traits,
My evolutionary progress surpasses and transcends his.
Samsa--Phylum and Class--was, after all, an insect.
Nonetheless, I remain a changeling.
Have I not seen many stages of growth?
Each a painful metamorphic cycle,
From exquisite first egg,
Through caterpillar’s appetite & squirm.
To phlegmatic bliss and pupa quietude,
I unfold my wings in a rush of Van Gogh palette,
Color, texture, movement and grace, lift off, flapping in flight.
My eyes have witnessed wondrous transformations,
My experience, nouveau riche and distinctly self-referential;
For the most part unspecific & longitudinally pedestrian.

Yes, something has happened to me along the way.
I am no longer certain of my identity as a human being.
Time and technology has altered my basic wiring diagram.
I suspect the sophisticated gadgets and tools,
I’ve been using to shape & make sense of my environment,
Have reared up and turned around on me.
My tools have reshaped my brain & central nervous system.
Remaking me as something simultaneously more and less human.
The electronic toys and tools I once so lovingly embraced,
Have turned unpredictable and rabid,
Their bite penetrating my skin and septic now, a cluster of implanted sensors,
Content: currency made increasingly more valuable as time passes,
Served up by and serving the interests of a pervasively predatory 1%.
And the rest of us: the so-called 99%?
No longer human; simply put by both Howards--Beale & Zinn--

Humanoid.
howard brace Aug 2013
"A leisurely breakfast" their mother would admonish, "aids digestion and builds strong bones..." so what with the imposed inactivity every morning, boredom broken only by Sockeye the family Spaniel, whose want of table manners coincided very conveniently with mealtimes... as he paced restlessly under the table, slobbering indiscriminately in his daily scramble to devour every dangling morsel before supply and demand shut up shop for the night and went home, far tastier... he gobbled down the latest offering of egg white, than the remnants of his own dietary allowance, they just had to get the timing right that was all, or risk loosing a finger, or gaining one depending upon who was doing the dangling, or who was doing the gobbling... he gave an indignant sneeze, not so much a hint but more of a... 'what's with the pepper malarky...'  So that it was only with a good deal of snappy hand coordination, lengthy digestion and sturdy bone building that Rocky was finally able to extricate himself from the table and make the most of what little time remained until lunchtime, meagre time indeed for the Rocky's of this world to hang around with their dogs, leaving their little sisters to help mums do, whatever it was that girls usually did when they should have scooted out of the kitchen faster, when it would have been all so much simpler just to grab a handful of biscuits instead...  Meanwhile, laying in wait in the room above, flat out upon the bedroom counterpane, having recently had their insides stuffed to bursting with a full English breakfast's worth of beach and holiday apparal... and that was just the luggage.    

     The contents of which, up until a week last washday had been snoozing fitfully behind 'Do Not Disturb' signs, cautiously peeping out from the gloomier, more remote recesses of the bedroom dresser, or carefully concealed in cupboards and closets... and being in every other respect by no means readily accessible to public scrutiny of any kind... had been left to their own devices some twelve months earlier with a clear understanding to skip bath nights from that moment on and henceforth immerse themselves in the heady, camphorated pungency of mothball, vowing once and for all never to darken portmanteau lids again... but now, after many hours of arduous laundering and de-fumigation... were now being squeezed and unceremoniously shoe-horned into what had recently become nothing short of an overcrowded sanctuary for the dispossessed.  
              
     Meanwhile, all the luggage asked from life other than be detained under section four of the Mental Health Act, 1983 and be found cosy padded accommodation elsewhere... was to have their interiors vacated, their tranquility reinstated... and with a questionable wink from a dodgy Customs official, have their travel permits invalidated... irrevocably, for despite throwing a double six for a spot of well earned convalescence back on top of the wardrobe some twelve months ago, basking in the shade of a warm Summer Sun, striking up the occasional conversation with the floral decor, third bloom from the left currently answering to the name of Petunia, the still over extended luggage, seemingly with little hope of R & R this side of the letter Q, faced the perennial disquiet of vacational therapy, of being knelt on, sat and bounced upon and be specifically manhandled in ways that matching sets of co-ordinated luggage should not...
                                        
     Tina could be heard quite distinctly in the next street concerning her husbands lack of competence, whilst Red it appeared had become just as outspoken as his wife in that particular direction... as the local self appointed busybody, who lived well within earshot of the address in question would bear witness to as she put feverish pen to paper, writing to what had become a regular... and some would say hot bed of intrigue in the local tabloid concerning how vociferous the once tranquil neighbourhood had become of recent and how certain undesirable elements within the community were to be heard carrying on alarmingly at all hours, day and night... and as she diligently weighed her civic duty against simple household economics as to whether to send this latest block busting eye opener by first or second class post, their parents could now be heard broadcasting, if anything to a wider listening audience than the previous newsflash, some of the more sensational episodes of the previous twenty-four hours as to who was pulling whose suitcase zipper now... although in which direction it should be pulled, they both agreed, wasn't for public disclosure at that time... vowing to draw blood well before the day was out, as three lacerated fingers would later testify and that it was only because of the children that they were going at all... but God willing, they would be setting off very shortly with rosy smiles on their faces for the sole benefit of the neighbours, even if it killed them. 

     Spurred to fever pitch  by this latest 'stop-the-press' newsflash, the same public spirited busybody now threw herself wholeheartedly into further award winning journalism and for the second time that morning took to pen and paper, only now directed to the gossip column in the local Parish Gazette, followed by grievous lamentations of impending bloodshed to the incumbent Chief Constable as to how they'd all be murdered in their beds ere long before nightfall.

     By devouring his water bowl, thereby dispensing with the need for it to be washed and by its abrupt and mysterious absence, disposing of all further incriminating evidence as to where the abundant supply of liquid, now surging copiously across the kitchen floor had sprung from... the flash-flood was hastily making its own getaway beneath the kitchen units, leaving Sockeye to his own devices to carry the can on his own, ankle deep in what up until earlier that morning had been sloshing around quite contentedly in Eccup reservoir.

      Having inadvertently released the handbrake in a boyish gesture of bravado, thereby placing himself in sole charge of a runaway vehicle, Sockeye it appeared was not the only member of the Salmon family to have dropped himself right in it that day as Rocky, having unwittingly placed the following ten years pocket money well out of reach and back into the pockets of his parents dwindling resources, had to a far greater extent nominated himself for the same Earth moving experience as the one his mum would shortly be giving Sockeye...

      Having just been granted licence to do whatsoever it pleased, the vehicle began its leisurely rearwards perambulation down the long garden driveway and by way of small thanks for its new found independence took Rocky along for the ride where due to a certain lack of stature on Rocky's part, at no point had he ever been in the slightest position to influence the Holiday threatening train of events which now engulfed him, never thinking to reapply the handbrake... that would be too easy, he perched on the edge of the seat clutching the steering wheel and stretched out his sturdy little legs in an heroic, but futile attempt to reach the pedals as the family car, which up until any second now had been his fathers pride and joy, pitched backwards at what seemed to Rocky, breakneck speed and directly into a very severe and unforgiving brick wall.

     Almost missing this latest round of entertainment above that of her parents most recent exchange, River accompanied by Sockeye scampered outdoors and slap into what could only be described as the most fun she'd had all year as an unsuspecting "what was that noise" muscled its way through the open bedroom window and fell flat on its face in the garden below and which, if that morning to date was anything to go by, then the neighbourhood would soon be tuning in to the latest Salmon family's 'hot-off-the-press' breaking news bulletin.

     Opening her mouth River hesitated as she fine-tuned the speech centres of her young and delicate synapse into full vocal alignment, then adjusting shutter speed from f8 to automatic she closed her mouth... then opened it once again and informed her brother that if the tip of dads size 9 was an Olympic gold, then Rocky would be sure to take first in the 110 metre hurdling event with 'team GB...' and could she have his autograph... with those words of solid encouragement rattling around his ears like the last biscuit in an otherwise empty tin box, River went skipping back into the house to announce the latest newsflash of her parents next financial happening... which she felt certain would prompt further rounds of thought provoking front page journalism.

     A steady two hours drive away, over on the east coast, the inhabitants of a sleepy fishing community were gainfully employed, pretty much as any other, going about their daily business, one such denizen... a baby crustacean, currently marooned by the tide had taken up temporary accommodation in a beachfront rock-pool property of certain distinction, was as yet unaware of a completely different and obscure set of circumstances that would shortly be rearing his slobbering jowls and bring all four paws, the size of dinner plates, crashing down upon the unsuspecting seashore fauna... was determined while she waited to catch the next high tide home, that until such time that the right wave rolled along, would potter about in the little rock-pool, perhaps indulge herself in a leisurely bathe... and catch up on a spot of therapeutic knitting.

     So, placing the days events since breakfast into perspective...  [i]  the vehicle indemnity provider, henceforth to be named 'the party of the first part', who currently weren't cognisant of an impending claim to date, would shortly be laying eggs attempting to squirm out of all liability, due to  [ii]  the automobile, driven by a minor, fortunately for Salmon senior on private land and henceforth, the aforementioned to be called 'the third party, to the party of the second part...' which urgently needed rigorous cosmetic attention to the rear tail light cluster and surrounding bodywork so as to maintain a favourable resale mark-up price.  [iii]  Having been dragged kicking and screaming from the top of the wardrobe, the luggage had rapidly developed cold feet and cried sudden illness in the family, but were being taken to the Wake anyway.  [iv]  Wrapped around the hot water cylinder since the previous Summer, the various sundry items of holiday apparel stood united, resolute as a Union Picket line not be seen dead looking as though they'd never so much as seen the bottom of a flat-iron.  [v]  Both Red and his wife, Tina, despite wearing the same anaemic smile as the one show to the neighbours as they departed, travelling counter clockwise along the crescent so as not to unduly advertise their recent misadventure with the garage wall, were only going for the sake of the children, whilst  [vi]  River and her errant brother didn't want to go anyway dismayed at leaving the television set behind, were already missing their favourite programs, which only really left  [vii]  'mans-best-friend' who, when he wasn't actually hanging over the front seat giving dad big sloppy licks as though... 'are we nearly there yet' or perhaps... 'I need to stop and spend a penny... or you'll all know about it if you don't,' was more than content to be taking up the majority of the rear seating arrangements and with a delinquent wag of his tail, was deliriously happy to be wherever his family were.**

                                                        ­                             ...   ...   ...

a work in progress.                                                        ­                                                                 ­  1862
Kewayne Wadley Jul 2018
Just because it's suggested doesn't make it right.
In the hands of teachers, other staff.
What other purpose could this directly serve.
To defend our institutions.
To further endanger those around.
The knowledge instilled from book to teacher a different practice.
Now holstered, hidden in the drawer of a desk.

What goes through the mind of the victim that's been bullied.

What training can be set in place to stop the next bulletin.

Shooting across the screen.

The kid in 10th grade that carries the weight of the world.

Sitting all day staring out the window.

Mother in hospice.

A fragile thought swallowed by deafening silence.

It no longer becomes a listening session of encouragement.

The after school sessions of comfort sped up.

Another bulletin of hysteria fired across the screen.

Teacher student affair.

15 year old student found with 42 year old man.

When in reality she was seeking help due to a troubled home.

Afraid to sleep knowing the door would creep open.

Leaving her terrified to close her eyes. The relationship between step daughter and father without boundary.


Where's the specialty training for those who care.

The proper resources that extend beyond that of a pamphlet.

The dark skin kids that's made fun of because they look different.

Stereotyped as aggressive.
The dope boys, the baby mamas.

The light skin girl that's made to feel inferior because she turns red with every hit.

Her hair is longer than theirs so she wants to cut it.

Aggressively forgetting all the beauty she possesses.

The active shooter managing to make it pass the metal detectors.

Rallying the attention he didn't get at home.

The debate carries on across every wall except the right ones
Autumn Sep 2014
Achieving self-confidence and self-worth can be difficult when there are so many outside factors in the world that are constantly weighing in on people at all times. Once you achieve self-confidence however, you can truly achieve happiness. Being confident in one’s self has nothing to do with other people and their opinions, once this concept is understood, one can look at themselves in a way in which they can love themselves for who they genuinely are.  In order to achieve self-confidence, one must know themselves, accept themselves for who they are, be themselves without worrying about other’s opinions, and always do their best.
The first step in the journey to self-confidence is to fully know who you are, inside and out. Once you identify your flaws, your assets, and your likes, you can then further develop into a well rounded and unique individual. It is important to become independent because being independent creates self-confidence. If you know that you can do anything that you need to do without feeling uncomfortable, only then you can become confident in what it is that you are doing. Whether you like to paint, write, collect things, make things, whatever it may be, dive into it head first and don’t blink twice. If you want to do something, then you should do it. Doing what you want to do is very important because it does not matter what anybody else thinks you should do. What’s important is knowing what you want to do and feeling one hundred percent confident in doing it, regardless of what outside circumstances or people tell you otherwise. Once you figure out who you are, you can be confident in knowing exactly who you are, exactly what you want, and exactly where you want to go in life.
The next step in becoming a self-confident individual is to accept yourself for exactly who you are. Once you know exactly who you are, it is much easier to accept yourself, your flaws, your mistakes, and your opinions. Once you accept yourself you can then love yourself and all of yourself. Every single person is different, unique, and complex in so many different ways that you absolutely cannot compare yourself to anybody else. What you’re doing when you compare yourself to somebody else is tearing down your self confidence and setting yourself up for disappointment. There is not one definition for beauty, nor is there just one definition for smart or funny. You must also keep in mind that just because somebody else is smart and beautiful, does not mean that you are not smart and beautiful. You must keep the mindset that when you love yourself, it’s a lot easier for other people to love you as well. Once you truly become happy with who you are, that will shine through and you will radiate happiness wherever you go.
Once you know yourself and accept yourself, it is important to always be yourself. You now know who you are and what you like, so there is no reason in hiding that. If you are out with friends and they want to go see a scary movie and you absolutely hate scary movies, don’t be afraid to tell your friends exactly how you feel. They may end up going without you and that’s fine. People always appreciate somebody who is truthful and can make decisions for themselves. If you pretend to like what everybody else likes then you will become lost and your self-confidence is going to go right out the window. If you are comfortable with yourself and what you want, then you should have no problem making decisions for yourself and saying no to people. If you have an obsession with old newspaper articles then put them up in your house, on your fridge, or on a bulletin board. No matter how different your likes may be from those of others, you must embrace what you like. Don’t hide them away. Show them off to the world, show yourself off. If you can be yourself and make your own decisions, disregarding anybody else, then you are on your way to self-confidence.
The last step in achieving self-confidence is to always do your best. As simple as this sounds, it is greatly impactful on one’s self-confidence. If you always try your best no matter what, then you will never have a reason to feel bad about yourself. What more can you ask from someone than to always do their best? At the end of the day if you know that there was nothing that you didn’t try your best doing, then you can go to sleep feeling confident and fulfilled. What is important about this step is to apply it to even the smallest of tasks. Even if you are having a terrible day at work, you must at least try your best or you will feel bad about it later. For example, your boss may ask you to sweep the floor. You may not think that something so little as sweeping the floor can impact your self-confidence, but it most definitely can. Sweep underneath the tables and in all of the hard to reach corners, because it’s only going to take a fraction of a minute longer and at the end of the day you can say that you did your best and that you are proud of yourself. You might have a terrible boss, but you at least don’t have to question whether or not he may be right about you being a bad employee, because you will know that you are the only one who sweeps the corners and does your job to the best of your ability and so therefore it will not matter what your boss says or thinks. You will have no reason to doubt yourself if you know that there was nothing else that you could have done to do a better job.
Achieving self-confidence is truly as easy as following these four simple steps. Once you know who you are, accept who you are, be who you are, and always try your best, you will be self-confident and happy with yourself. Once you choose to love yourself for who you are and you achieve self-confidence, the possibilities in life are truly endless. Self-confidence will guide you and help you to live a self full filling, happy, and exciting life.
CharlesC Feb 2012
The flood
of information
Finding our doors
disconcerting times
My example today
client is relationship
bulletin is focus
constricting the flood
discovering inner light?
That message alone
Meaning before trash!
Steganography?
(Look it up!)
Margot Dylan Dec 2014
Dearest reader,


My name is Margot Dylan and I am no longer a ******.

I stared at Dianne staring at Frieda Bentley, as she dragged on a Camel Blue and as I dragged my pen across my notepad. I sketched her figure as she walked closer to Frieda, dropping her cigarette on the ground. Frieda smiled at Dianne, as she stepped and twisted her shoe on the smoldering carcass.

And they looked at each other. Not like how normal people look at each other. And Dianne smiled. A smile that was not like any smile Dylan ever gave me.

I felt a hand on my shoulder, with ******* slipping to my collarbone. The ******* tapping belonged to a girl. The girl's name was Thora, a brunette that smelled like bubblegum and 'don't go'. Thora had something in common with Dianne: They both recently came out as gay. Unlike me, both family reactions were fairly positive. In fact, so positive that-What are you drawing?

"Margot?"

I paused, looked at Thora, and looked back at Dianne or Dylan Dunham. "That girl," I pointed in their general direction, as Dianne kissed Frieda on the forehead. Thora followed my finger in time for the kiss on the lips, "the ironic one."

Thora Nelson, daughter of Cameron Nelson and the deceased Geraldine Nelson, looked at my chin and asked, "Who is she?"

Thora's cotton-candy-blues met my puddles of mud, as I looked away, putting my notepad in my backpack. Before I zipped, I grabbed the lime green marker sleeping next to my pack of index cards. My teeth squeezed the leaf colored cap off, as I pulled out the fetus, smelling the aroma of non-toxic afterbirth.

I asked if she wanted a tattoo and she shrugged, "Oh no, you mean I get to choose whether you touch me or not?"

Lightly pressing the fiber tip to her arm, I glanced up at her and shrugged a bony shoulder, "Her name is Dylan Dunham. Well, it's actually Dianne. It's complicated. I used to call her Dylan. She used to call me Margot."

"But your name still is Margot," Thora informed as her eyes followed the acid-green ink trail.

"Some people change, some people don't," I said, with the cap held between my teeth.

I painted her arm in lime hope, by the soda machines. My eyes focused on her pores that I imagined swallowed dirt and bacteria from the side of my palm. I could feel Thora disarm me with her eyes, after I had disarmed her with my words. Her heartbeat echoed inside my grasp.

"I didn't know I was dating Leonardo DaVinci," the words flowing from her mouth.

"I am gay and Italian, so it's not like I was doing a terrific job of hiding it from you," I muttered as I finished and held her pale forearm and bracelet cuffed hand a foot from her face, "Look: it's us underneath a tree."

Turning and wrinkling her nose, she adjusted, moving her head back and forth. " Oh wow. Wow, wow, wow. Meta. So meta. So abstract. Brilliant in its simplicity, deconstructing the concept of natural complexity-"

"Shut up-"

"The tree looks like an umbrella. And we look like we have canes-"

"Those are our fishing poles. In that world, we are fishermen. Fisherwomen. Fishergals-"

"And my **** is too big and your ***** are too small and our smiles aren't big enough-well, at least mine isn't, I can't speak on your behalf," she finished.

Grabbing her arm, I looked at my masterpiece, looked at her, looked at it again, and looked at her again as her smile grew with every glance. "Well, I can see how it'd be up to debate, and you're right: very, very meta. But you do have a big ****, and I'm not one to sacrifice accuracy. Speaking of accuracy: as I look at this green ****, I realized I hit the mark by dating you. Honestly, your **** may have its own zip code..And...I'd like to be in its area? Please stop me."

Her chin touched her knee, as she doubled over, laughing. I played with her hair, wrapping her bangs around my fingers. As my hands were enveloped by her dark hair, I found a scar on her crown. I imagined Thora's milky-white fingers scrubbing through shampooed locks, trembling across the zig and zag of removed glass.

I imagined Thora Nelson, of Cameron Nelson and the deceased Geraldine Nelson, hearing sirens instead of water hitting the tiles. Her slumping to the floor, as lather and water runs down her face, each tear a memory of being dragged out of a steel ribcage, onto broken glass jungle pavement. It was too easy yet too difficult to imagine her staring at the steaming showerhead. It was too easy yet too difficult to imagine her reaching towards a metallic carcass growing in flames.

Her hand grabbed my leg and I saw her for what might have been the first time.

"Hey you. Listen. Are you listening?"

I nodded.

"I'm in love with you, Margot Dylan. Like, really in love. To the point to where I feel like I'm in a Jennifer Aniston rom-com. It's disgusting."

I didn't know what happened between my exploration of her hair and her pale face studying mine, but, before I knew it, my blood shook and barbed wire nerves orbited around pieces of my body.

The ricochet of a soda can smacking the mouth of the machine sounded. Time was either too fast or too slow, as I looked at Thora's cheap mascara eyes and chapped, soft pink lips. She was the type of girl that could make someone happy not to believe in god.

"And I love you. To the point to where I'd refuse Hogwarts because of not being able see you during the school year."

"How sweet, I know how badly you wanted to get into Ravenclaw," she smiled.

"Sacrifices must be made in the name of love, you know. And it ***** because you're not even my type," I admitted.

"Oh, how tragic. And what is your type, if I may ask?"

"You may, thank you. And the falling in love type," I'm an idiot.

"Could you be anymore cheesy?"

"Mozzarella."

She stopped and looked at me, "Hey, but really, I'm in love with you. It's real."

"I love you, too."

Her eyes were speckled,"You really love me, Margot Dylan? Because I'll believe you."

I leaned in, softly placed my hands on her cheeks, breathing the word, "Yes." I alternated between staring at her mouth and her eyes, as her lids began to drop.  My lips started to dab hers and soon grab, as if soft hooks grew out of and connected our flesh. I found the corner of her mouth, the summit of her cheek, and each crease in her lips. Nine or ninety seconds past before I stopped, pulled away, and looked into her eyes. "Hogwarts is overrated anyway," I lied. She laughed.

Her face was red, as she looked down while covering her face, "Don't look at me, I'm a dork. I'm being a loser. I'm infected."

"It's okay. You can be my infected dork and we can be losers together," my voice was a rasp.

"It really isn't. You see, my face always becomes extraordinarily red after I kiss or am kissed by someone, especially by someone beautiful. And it doesn't help that I've never been kissed by someone I love. And I've never kissed a girl before and I'm really glad you were the first, so there. Gah," her hands fenced her face,"I'm just going to hide behind these hands, don't mind me."

I was in love, "For how long?"

"Probably forever, I don't know. Or until the next installment of American Horror Story, I haven't made up my mind yet."

We heard Ms. Calloway scold Dianne about smoking on school grounds. I looked at Thora and the bell rang. Her hands slowly dropped, as everyone started to move in blurs. Bodies gaining more and more distance. Inches became miles. Feet grew into light-years, and, before I knew it, Thora kissed my cheek and said, "I hope I see you later, okay?"

My hand had something in it. My fingers unfurled and revealed high school origami. My name was on it, with a heart or a ****-I'm the artist in the relationship. I began pulling on *****, the tips of my fingers breaking the paper safe. So delicate must have been her mysterious movements.

I opened it.




A pebble flew from my hand and blipped off her bedroom window. Funny thing about bedroom windows, they look the same at 12:03 am. Or maybe they look a little different when the person you love is behind the glass, as you do an eighties-film-esque pebble throw. Before my next pebble hit the pane, her bedroom light came on.

Navy blue curtains disappeared to the sides as Thora came to the window and rubbed her eyes. A second later, she was gone as I imagined her sneaking past her father's bedroom, quietly down the stairs, and through the foyer. As I imagined this, I could hear the front door being unlocked and creaking open. I walked towards the porch and a yellow glow escaped with a silhouette living in it.

Thora's left hand is burnt, but I don't mind and I don't think I ever will. She held my hand as we walked through the threshold. At first I was nervous when I saw her father in the living room, but I instantly realized that he was passed out, as my eyes found empty beer cans sleeping beside him and around him.

"It's not like this every night," she whispered, "he just has trouble with certain months."

Thora tucks her toes when standing in place. When we were walking up stairs, I knew she would be embarrassed if I looked at her toes, so I kept my eyes on the second floor. I don't understand why she feels this way, though. She has very nice feet, and that's coming from someone who thinks feet are gross.

We walked past punched in doors adjacent to perfect picture frames. Her mother was a beautiful woman.

As we approached Thora's sticker-clad door, she turned to me and whispered, "You're about to enter the only place in the world I feel safe. So, please don't break my heart in it and please use a coaster."

My thumb kissed her smooth burn, as I took my first steps into her bedroom. The light-switch flicked and her room illuminated. There were movie posters hugging the walls, pinned to a bulletin board were pictures of lost people and found memories. She looked at me and whispered, "I don't know how to keep people."

We stood before the side of her bed and I looked at her smile, "You sure you want to do this?" Thora nodded and I reached towards her thighs to lift the bottom of her shirt. Lifting it over her head, I looked at her porcelain figure clad in black *******. I tossed the grey shirt onto her bed.

My eyes swam from her belly button to her *******. My fingers approached and stopped until she said it was okay. Tracing her curves, scars, and stretch marks, she pet my fingers. Thora glanced at my hands on her ******* and then at me, cooing, "I'm sorry."

My hands slid to her sides, "Sorry for what?"

She shrugged, "I don't know," her eyes spilling, "Sorry for this," she motioned at her torso as she stared at her bulletin board and then at me before looking away again, "I want to be perfect. I want to be perfect for you."

"Oh no, no, no," I asked for her hand and then placed it over my left breast, "Can't you feel how beautiful you are?"




Her arm was under my ******* and her hand was on my rib, occasionally running her fingertips across the bumps. She slept with her leg wrapped around mine, staying as close as she could to me. I looked at her, in her slumber, and left a faint, burgundy stain on her forehead. I reached towards our shins and pulled the black cover over our fused bodies.

I feel like I have been in a coma for seventeen years and I've just woken up. If I could, I'd stretch this moment over centuries and use it to smother wars. This relationship probably won't last past my senior year, but that's okay. It truly is.

In this moment, Thora Nelson is the love of my life, and, in ways I don't understand yet, that is the most beautiful thing in the world.



May the sun set in our eyes forever,


Margot Dylan
I have the latest Weather Bulletin; right here in my hand.  You need to run for shelter, as fast as you can.
How much more, of bad weather can people take?  I know what's happening can't be a mistake!
Thundering and lightening is running people insane.  People do not want to hear the next Hurricane's new name.
We would like to mention, about the multiple earthquakes.  Even the Oceans are overflowing, along with our Lakes.
Please don't forget about the 200 miles per hour winds.  Perhaps, it's about time for us to repent of all our sins.
By, Sandra Juanita Nailing
Pablo Picasso  Feb 2013
bulletin
fresh feet
in sawdust
rust
before noon
b e mccomb  Jul 2016
Solar Piano
b e mccomb Jul 2016
Gold glitter
Only stays on the ceiling
When the upholstery is gray.

Church gyms are suddenly
Piggy banks to play
Basketball upon.

I will draw a city on
The bulletin board
And owl pushpins will inhabit it.

My mind is no longer in a
Casing of gray rick-rack
And suppositions I do not feel.

It is a precarious thing to
Play a solar piano
Under the midday sky.

Have you ever heard
A pumpkin-flavored
Volkswagen van?

It happened suddenly
That everything I could possibly
See became a photography contest.
Copyright 5/10/15 by B. E. McComb
robin May 2013
so like
i know this isn't the classiest way of doing things
and i apologize in advance for posting my proposal
on the bulletin board
of this skeezy coffee shop -
no offense to the owners
please don't throw this letter away -
but last week
you stole my bike

it was a great one
not shiny or fancy or anything, but it worked well for me
worked for the past four years
and the twenty years before that
when it was still my dad's
and he rode it to the post office every day to
help letters get where they belong
(maybe letters like this one, isn't that romantic
maybe he's guiding this
thanks dad, you're the best)
and passed it on when his knees froze up
and i rode it to this skeezy coffee shop every day -
sorry to the owners
(again)
but i buy your ****** lattes every day
least you can do is let me propose -
but then last week
i left it outside
and didn't lock it
(fate, see)
and you stole my bike

i think
you were probably walking by -
maybe about to come get a ****** latte
from this skeezy coffee shop
(sorry)
but then something caught your eye
i think you saw all the emotion invested in my bike.
two decades of getting letters where they belong.
four years of ****** lattes.
and well
who can resist so much meaning
spread out in the open for anyone to take?
and i mean
since you saw it there,
didn't just say 'oh'
'a bike'
like everyone else,
you were probably meant to have it.
it's a piece of my heart
(the bike i mean)
and now you have it

or maybe you just liked the color
and like
i do too
green is a great color

i like green
you like green
you wanna go out sometime

we could go on a bike ride
except
you stole my bike

anyway
i don't think the bulletins are supposed to be this long
but it's an important one
so maybe it's okay this time
so if you see someone with an old green bike
tell them i'm in the skeezy coffee shop
i'm the one drinking the ****** latte
and holding a jewelry box
check out this crock of **** what even

— The End —