He had her hypnotized her. But she silently complied. Going under at a countdown and then the instant orgasm produced at the snap of his fingers. A funny little game. “Oh“, she cooed, “Where are my clothes?“, as she rhythmically undulated her hips to and fro. The camera rolling its red light blinking. (Snap!) his fingers replied. Somewhere in the room a long deep moan easing out slowly like warm toothpaste from a newly flattened tube. She caught with her forefinger between her lips unconsciously tasting herself. “Where was that in my set of instructions?“, he quietly mused to himself? Her hips not skipping a cycle reciprocating constantly though more violently. The same eternal grin of that silly stupid smile breaking out on her features as it does with all women when they are doing something ‘naughty‘ and enjoying it to the max. (Snap!) once again. Her expression shagging. Transformed from the casement of pleasure into a fluttering sense of pleasurable distress. “You will keep dancing but when I snap my fingers again your orgasms will be one-hundred times stronger!“, he forcefully mumbled. An internal dialogue within before a bed sheet movie screen flickering forth a Keystone cop melodrama with him twirling his mustache in black cape and tall hat as the door is battered in and a row of nightstick wielding clowns tumble in after it. “I never touched her!“, being the initial defense disturbing the scene before him. (Snap!) (Snap!) That same low earthquake moan resounding once again as her two legs threatened to sink away towards the floor from their rhythm into an gratifying collapse. Somewhere from a distant past discarded thought reflecting an eddy of dissatisfaction in the possibility of by her own disclaimer her body being unworthy of desire. The apparition of those badly matched breasts dangling awkward before her narrowed eye’s interrogation fading away as quickly as it had been summoned up. “Tic Tock! Tick Tock, Tic Tock!” The Sine wave of her flanks resuming their constant wobbly pattern as before in time with the expectation of the resumption of that fluttering within. “Dirty louse!“, her mother’s voice suddenly echoed within her cranium from afar . “Getting his jolly’s is he!” Her eye catching his. The palpitations within suddenly ramping up at her own twinge of guilty shame. “Naked!” her brain declared from a distant window overhead. “I am finally naked to the world and I don’t care!” (Snap!), (Snap!), (Snap!) Pow! “Dirty louse!“, the little mouse-like voice ringing out softly again as it tumbled far away. The dance continuing forth throughout that coming night.
it was a pleasant sunny day strolling down the sidewalk at the edge of the beach by the water. The adjacent bike path’s traffic was slowly buildings with weekend ‘Tour de France’ aficionados many of whom who seemed to confuse occasional pedestrian traffic crossing their path as some form of momentary personal vendetta. Approaching the meander of the six lane highway to the other side of the ritzier section of the city’s center the Brahman section of the beach came into view. I knew that I was out of my depth strolling down this part of the beach. One that was unofficially reserved by some unspoken fiat for those in full flower of youth and wealth. And here was I nearly four decades past same taking my time at a pace that was annoying to all constituents of that age group! But there were no stanchions along the path to keep the riff raffia out of their zone. And my pittance of tax money was a good as the massive amounts that many of their parents declined to pay so rather than cross over under the tunnel below the big highway to an adjoining side street I rallied forth at the exact same slow maddeningly pace obliviously taking in any and all surrounding me as if it were part of a circus midway. And for someone such as myself, as I have said, being a multiple of three times the age of nearly all those before me nearly in the buff and vainglorious exposing as much well-tanned buff flesh as possible I am sure I was just as problematic. If not in the eyes as problematic as the occasional appearance of one of their parent’s in swimwear that might have exposed all the most unwanted bulges that their well-tanned sensibilities would have been fearfully abhorrent of. The current day’s propriety of this region not tolerant of an Michelin males or Pillsbury dough people.
One section demanded that all who dare not risk life and limb challenging the eminent domain of the nearby velocipede superhighway had to descend via an old crumbling concrete stairwell to walk amidst the well-heeled Lancome Bienfait buttered bun skinny thong-habited indigene. Granite ‘six pack‘ torsos supporting swollen biceps silently hard at work to garner temporal admiration within the surround of diffident maiden flesh. Their own ample Venus de Milo marbled chassis sporting sparsely covered surgically over-inflated boobies lounging like seals on the expanse of the low waist high sea wall. My own tiny, oft forgotten, ‘Johnson‘ becoming a tad nervously restless at this enfolding spectacle below I courageously descended. An navigational hazard appeared in my peripheral vision sitting somewhat draped on the treads ten steps down. A young man with his physical form lounging Etruscan couch style indifferently taking up a good part of the real estate nearly blocking egress into the teaming youthful morass below. My efforts to be covertly as circuitous as possible bruised by his verbal interjection. “Would you mind giving me a hand?“, the Apollonian face spoke in my direction. As if uttering some obscure stern quip from the more erudite unexplored postings of a lesser know ancient Greek poet. I looked back at him with trepidation as I had managed to circumnavigate his obstruction with what I took to be an extraordinary degree of stealth. What inordinate rule of the Gods had I transgressed to bring forth an utterance. Then I turned a bit and noticed that his lower limbs were quite thin and limp. His sunglasses armed continence directed its fire my way once again “Would you mind giving me a hand?” I stood there dumb as an ox. His appearance was no less than any other of nearby Narcissus. In fact, given the level of vesture and accompanying the Hublot chronometer and Roman Paul neck chain it might have been easily said that his was more than a few rungs above. “A Lift . . . in the literal sense!” Obviously considered an ox by this young man. Something though in my own private conversation informed me that this was a challenge of sorts. Not some saccharine issue of what might have been considered Good Samaritan gesture. But a challenge on the level of laying down a gauntlet with the corresponding probability of a dueling scar or worse. An act of retreat signifying cowardice. I didn’t consider that I might possibly fail to be able to lift him up. Surprisingly, up in the air he went and my back after many years of wear and teas held. I now served as pachyderm.
It was a strange career where though I was publicly scorned and privately invisible my talents at discretion and still adequate arms brought me into unimagined circles as this young gentleman’s man’s man in public. A role that I had once scorned but when actively taken on led to unofficial wealth and access to a portion of the world that I had vaguely heard of but never really knew existed. In some strange way I became the focus of a certain calling within the atmosphere of general decadence that this young gentleman traveled. Perhaps his own perverse nature as a millennial in wanting to be seen carried into venues by an aging ‘baby boomer‘ whetted some inner private fantasy of his own? While perceptibly considerable as ‘Gay’ in tastes to a casual outsider, agnostic to all things overtly sexual in practice focusing more on the regal exercise of power rather than real world participation. The demonstrated example of which led to a certain ranking of young attractive females in the environs approached were likely to approach who were willing to enthusiastically advance their desire to off participation in very forward offers of offbeat sexual gratification. Ones where I was tasked as their centerpiece. For me in those times of my scheduled performance in ceremonial entry and ultimate egress it was like reliving my own licentious young adulthood. A special status that for a while was entertaining but in light of age, stamina and reason soon became too problematic. I found myself comparing the levels of perversity’s engaged in. And to some degree found a fellow traveler in that regard from the behavior of my benefactor who only allowed himself to be engaged in an abbreviated version of some offbeat calling when it involved him ‘riding int he saddle‘ as opposed to serving as the conveyance. Humiliation having been foisted on him by the fact of his physical condition but not by current avocation to continue it through physical lip service. It was odd that like some Vaudeville performer of yore when found off-stage he treated me with a certain silent unspoken respect. An essential to his act that as it seemed to garner the affection of each audience he would not deign to tamper with or defame. The lesson that time and a variety of extraordinary experiences soon providing was that the human race as a single species was indeed a strange animal. And like any other animal in an unsure and chaotic universe had to be unscrupulously tamed and kept under tight control lest it eventually lead to the demise of it’s master.
The squat overweight black woman was clutching the McDonald’s bag tightly on her chest as she absentmindedly crossed the ‘T‘ of the overburdened unemployment line of unfortunates restlessly awaiting their turn at the front desk. Every possible configuration of humanity was represented from any corner of the Earth. The only visible proviso being that the outfits were distinctly American influenced in design and cut. Something in many cases unflattering to the occasionally outlandish proportions of the supplicant. Murphy stood patiently in line.At first at the extreme end of the large hall off in a corner where the active snake of humanity’s tail incrementally grew longer and longer as more people arrived. A sad menagerie of former promise gone awry. Dead dreams out of fashion like the mismatch of Salvation Army suitable attire that serves as their regular fare. Hobbling around on failing limbs helped along by male companions that they would have never dreamed to have consorted with in decades past. Humiliated and shamed by the vagaries of age and growing infirmity. Fall weather’s fading glow handing off it’s melancholy presence to the doldrums of withering cold and extended darkness. Every emotional knickknack and physical slight still manifest in suspended animation scheduled to arise once again at existence’s end. To fade back into nothingness from whence one came. A slow easy surrender and violation to one’s simple sense of eternity. A violation of the self. He knew himself to be a man of excess and obsession. Pathologically so! All to show for his failings being an oversupply of material objects. Each one in an outmoded sense of present market value in atrophy amidst the society that surrounds him. His chase for golden apples of notoriety seemingly eternal. Ever ripe for the brass of the moment where a synthesis with that single diaphanous proposition of possible potential success translated into a temporal form of reality of wishing to be found ahead of all others. The most dangerous of notions! It may have been that somewhere along the way upon the path that was forged by oneself the sight of what seemed so long familiar and easily brought to mind was now in the past totally lost. One’s own name long forgotten by the world outside? Tall grass growing high before one’s front doorstep that lay ever unkempt. Impatient expectations tamed only by the largesse of too many passing seasons of waiting. Converted into dead stalks long blown over by old forgotten winds. Crumbling in one’s grasp too far desiccated to be recognizable. Spent an useless before another season’s reciprocation. The line before him had now advanced several more empty souls.
The dance had always been central to his thoughts. Movement and its potential being forever analyzed in the back of his mind. Every action of the hand and arm measured step by step. Perhaps too much TV? A cartoon level of cartoon existence emulating that child-like two-dimensional universe of ‘shake and bake‘ behavior. The mental progress of posture to posture trying to feel when to break free and let what happens occur without hesitation. What part of his focus was flawed? His usual partner was critical? It seemed that there was a power struggle between their egos. Her’s versus his! His other occasional male partner seemed much more amenable. His own steps seemed naturally simpatico with his male partner. Was it a man woman gulf in-between thing? Was he secretly Gay? Step for step his male partner’s movements echoed his own. The audiences did not understand it either way. Most were Philistines. The line ahead to the desk didn’t seem to be shortening. Why did they like to see others move? Were they all just voyeurs he wondered? “All we have in this larger fishbowl is ourselves and accumulation of our own follies to confront?”, he mused. Every car runs out of gas unless that part is replenished. But what if the emotional sustenance can no longer be found? The line lost a couple more applicants redirected to the gallery of chairs that had been cordoned off far to the left. Most of them now filled. His time seems to be fading quickly. His physicality not what it once was. He looked at the children racing about the legs of those in line. Many would start their lives as fully grown individuals when he was dead. He closed his eyes and a vision of little glowing candles sailing off in paper boats disappearing into dark night congealed. Humanity together and yet alone but to what end? “My own end!”, he thought. Now withdrawn from society with a class of humanity specifically demoted to simply a passing phase. A solitary granule in a half full box of stale aging Cream of Wheat. The extravaganzas of performance linked to so many great novels lodged like great sailing ships in his head. Now barren of sails and sunk in the middle of the harbor. Great ballets remaining un-acted and with scores for same partially submerged serving as carrion for the derelict ship’s worms. Age not responsible for destructing the habit of hope and plans for the future. If not here than in off in some other realm still not yet imagined.
The dipole of mixed emotions equally susceptible to being drawn back and forth in and out of angst and euphoria only to be repelled What after all did one have to lose but one’s self? The infrequency of familiar relations a rarity with others casting one immediately as the stranger. Perhaps novel for a time, but never at home. Only that now far distant era that was spent under the rule of ones barely recalled. The ones that had brought him into the world? A fit bow to have loosed such an errant arrow. Enforced anonymity a matter of patent non-specificity in a reckless adherence to the daily rule of inflexible routine. Like liquid bleach spilled haphazardly creating an irreparable pale spot expanding beyond reasonable to be erased. High pressure to low pressure. The quality of the landscape having been dragged over across so roughly. Too many rocks having bruised one’s thighs! All the damage too problematic to reasonably recall! Can one really have the presence of mind to be able to precisely recall the disapproval their own mother visited upon her face? Those keepers of the circus cannons that one used to recklessly shoot themselves from into space. A bump across to land roughly in more distant foreign climes. Then to be locked up and imprisoned in more personal solitude. A facsimile of that brainless idea that propelled one forth somewhere nondescript within new yet equally abandoned fairgrounds. The underlying concept suddenly found to have been long ago disapproved of yet never heeded. Those fatal and inescapable persistent words, “I am alone.” “Next.“, an impatient voice rang out! “Next!”, it almost shouted with redoubled volume as Murphy realized that its indifferent ire was focused directly at him. To his surprise he was now at the head of the line.
The sound had been deafening! A mixture of the screams of two children and several meters worth of Chinese fireworks going off at the same time. Two angry looking cops had the ‘gravy train‘. The worse beat in the city. A rat infested concrete square of rundown tenement flats that might have better graced some bombed out city more like Beirut or WW2 Berlin at its worst. Those two kids in question seemed superhuman in their ability to quickly escape into the hinterlands wending their way through tunneled debris into aging concrete sewers Infrastructure that reminded one of a gap beneath a gigantic mattress of concrete. A place where the need for a Maglight was inevitable. That was if you wanted to seek out any clue as to those doings below that subterranean space far beneath one’s Oxfords. The sheer level of surrounding detritus meeting one’s gaze staggered the imagination. A sight that one was hesitant to embrace lest one find items so detestable that the gut within might unexpectedly suffer shell shock and hurl forth the half-forgotten contents of breakfast splattered by a wino at one’s wingtips. Those two kids hiding out of sight unfazed. there was nothing there that could phase them. Various piles of stinking trash that might have produced a migraine in any normal living soul was to them the familiar warren that offered discovery and cover from the prying eyes of outsiders. It was rare for any outsider to spy children there. For no outsider as one soon learned in this stated of miserable existence was to be trusted. Perhaps not even those from the neighborhood who may have once taken you under their wing and showed you how to survive? The two cops now padding off maybe by a station call concerning another truant child up to their usual tricks currently involved in a petty theft or some minor acts of random vandalism. The typical minor in this part of town having a way of converting to their future status to ‘career criminal‘.
Murphy staggered down the adjoining boulevard past the edge of this urban Hell. That dipole of his mixed emotions now equally susceptible to being wrenched back and forth in and out of angst and then euphoria. No check would be forthcoming the woman had said! Only after which to be repelled What after all did one have to lose but one’s self? The infrequency of familiar relations a rarity with others casting one immediately as the stranger. Perhaps novel for a time, but never at home. Only that now far distant era that was spent under the rule of ones barely recalled. Those ones that had brought him into the world? A fit bow to have loosed such an errant arrow. Enforced anonymity a matter of patent non-specificity in a reckless adherence to the daily rule of inflexible routine. Like liquid bleach spilled haphazardly creating an irreparable spot expanding beyond reasonable to be erased. High pressure to low pressure. The quality of the landscape having been dragged over across so roughly. Too many rocks having bruised one’s thighs! All the damage too problematic to reasonably recall! Can one really have the presence of mind to be able to precisely recall that constant disapproval from the now dim memory of their own mother’s wrinkled face? Those keepers of the circus cannons that used one as ammunition. Ones too recklessly compliant to allow themselves to be shot into space. A bump across the intervening lands roughly left in more distant foreign climes. Then to be locked up and imprisoned in cells of a more personal form of solitude. A facsimile of that same brainless idea that propelled them forth to this ‘somewhere‘ nondescript within a new yet equally abandoned fairground. The underlying concept suddenly found to have been long ago disapproved of. Yet never heeded. Those fatal and inescapable persistent words, “I am alone.”
That sonorous quality of all things familiar that drives one to create and summon expectations of what approximately ‘once was‘. To find that same nest of unbroken eggshells once again that was once known as one’s ‘home‘? How close to that vine this thought persistently clung to? Especially when fear and frenzy of an inevitable end was fast approaching! Trying as hard as possible to divert the conscious mind and to summon some form of reliable surety instead. As if one confidently knows of something unique and eternal. Opposed, of course, to simply repeating those same old answers to reverently unasked questions. “The path of life only leads in one direction.“, he mumbled, “And there is no possibility of a return!” The great tragedy of one day finding a fool’s cap resting upon one’s own head! As if they are suddenly informed that it had always rested there unnoticed. “What wisdom could you have ever expected to carry with you to the grave?” So many he knew would have wanted someone to tell a a safe comforting familiar story! One to recount some magical place of wonder that was safe from perpetual want or annoying responsibilities.A genie to take them somewhere familiar enough to never challenge them. But delight in the exploration of a step or two past droll conventionality. Not simply lost in the bush. “Is that right?“, he caught himself. “How do robins so selflessly mind their young and yet expect them to fly off one day on their own never to return? ” All we have in this large fishbowl that is ourselves and that long accumulation of our own folly to confront! “Yes! Every automobile eventually runs out of gas and breaks down without some measure of replenishment.”, he mouthed quietly to himself. But what if it can no longer be found? When one is too far lost somewhere in that undefined desert of the self? The past quickly fade into rust.
His street was empty and abandoned to the reigning solitude of night. Banished to other people’s children who would soon start their own lives independent of any judgment by his generation. “All distant unfathomable individuals and adults far in the future when I am dead?” he thought again. My generation is now simply a smaller community of little candles caught in those paper boats sailing off into empty limbo, all together, all alone. The eras they had known all withdrawn from what was now known as society and permanently demoted to another unimportant much mistaken passing phase of the march of humanity. Inconvenient, irritating and annoying to the young and vital. The condition of advancing age laughably destructive to one’s perpetual habit of remaining hope. Murphy thought of a story he had once read.
“We kissed while driving along in two separate cars running parallel down the road. All was fine until she remembered that she was picking up her cleaning. That was more important to her than continuing with me. The gym had grandstands where fellow female teachers sat eyeing naked pictures of young women. Little girls on field trip from that same gym walking by just above them. There friend below calling them back to floor below where two wagons stood at rest waiting to take them back to their school. On way back my friend and I running into one of the same horses with two little girls riding bareback upon it, Two that were following us? We picked the gravel off the bottom of their horses’ hooves and bid them goodbye. Leaving them both with their animal back behind on the sidewalk at the far end of that block.”
Murphy stood transfixed by the strangeness of his own situation. His diatribes seemed to have come from other lips than his own. Something that he felt did not belong to him but someone else. “Every time I meet a new girl.“, he said, “Another one shows up that thinks she and I have a relationship that is ongoing?” “But of course, she has appeared as if by magic to destroy any current relationship that may have threatened to get started?” He stared up at his own vacant window. “Who then is to blame?” A ghost??
The crash had come in the midst of night. It was late and he tilted his head forward from the covers that rode up as far as his chin. Another loud bang and his mind raced to find consciousness again and he vaulted from the bed into the play of shadow and vague streetlight that rested about the doorway to an equally unlit hall. The heart in his chest racing several feet ahead of him as he raced to the small gun safe and played the long practiced melody with his trembling fingers. The motor coughed as the lid jolted open and his hand rummaged for the hilt of the .45 caliber automatic that he had mostly held but never fired. He caught the shadow of a large man restlessly turning its head to orient itself in his lounge. He felt the grip of his own fear holding back the utterance. “Halt!“, he managed to rasp dryly. The short barrel of the weapon now waist high pointing towards the intruder of its own accord. The sharp report of of it barking twice as the target crumbled and collapsed as suddenly as a tree felled. “Oh my God!“, the man yelled to himself repeating it mindlessly several times as he watched the figure before him tremble for a second before falling permanently asleep. An unreasoning terror buried itself into his chest as the thought of his fate now cast to one of eternal damnation struck him. He had killed someone. The realization brought the sulfurous sting of cordite immediately fully into his nostrils. He gasped as he pictured himself in handcuffs behind bars. The automatic still hovered unsteadily before him. The guilty forefinger having retreated from the fast start taken upon the trigger. The terrible gravity of the instrument pulling it down to his side. He found himself trembling as he looked about where he could set it down but not your lose sight of it with the dun of shadows. He could still see about the room as brilliantly illuminated by those two sudden flashes. Two frame from a movie frozen in his mind’s eye. One of the figure in the overcoat in the middle of the room slightly bent hands clenched. The next frame torso twisted and reeling backwards from the force of the hollow point slug. He had thought he had heard the sound of broken glass?
Had it been several minutes? Or perhaps an hour that he had stood frozen in place not quite sure what to do. The first step forward seemed to take him from what had now become his entire life wrapped up in the sense of past tense. All his experience as who he had thought he had forever been and would have turned out to be had been swept into a refuse bin. He was now someone else. The figure lay collapsed face forward buried in the shards of what has been his large round glass coffee table. Though it was impossible to make out details his mind still could imagine the flesh of what had been a face torn and bloody and near to unrecognizable . The insinuation of the corpses presence and the destruction of its fall a grievous form of undeserved insult. He noticed the intercession of a column of light coming from the door ajar off to his left. The possible stigma of stranger eyes surreptitiously falling on him standing before the corpse culpable and condemned propelling him to close off any possibility of outside intervention. The front door of his unit was still upon its hinge though the area surrounding where the lock had met the jam was shattered. He took two steps forward cat like carefully peering down each direction finding nothing more than the same dimly lit causeways routinely illuminated as always. “The holiday weekend?“, he thought aloud, “No one might have heard because everyone was away!” “Goddam it!“, he barked furiously to himself. He was already thinking like a criminal! How could he explain and unregistered gun in a city that was hysterically insane about their simple fact of their possession? He didn’t even know who this stranger was or why the fool had blundered into knocking his door down in the first place? The notion of an inflexible municipal code seemed to weigh more heavily than any responsibility to vindicate the fact of this interloper’s unwelcome presence in his domain. It was not enough to say that the man had broken in and he had shot him.
He looked down to see his own hands passing across each other in a wringing motion. The door knob of his entry was bent slightly sideways above the battered crescent where a partial imprint of a man’s foot had left its mark. “How to erase that?”, the man’s mind rushed! He swung the door carefully back and forth examining the jagged edges of the portion of the splintered jam. He slipped inside and tested the fit of the door clearing away some splinters to set it as tightly closed as he could. A kitchen chair was dragged over to leverage itself underneath the doorknob to secure its closure. Not secure by any means especially as it had been at the commencement of this whole incident. The mind of the man began to turn in stages to the reason for this scenario and possible explanations as to why it had been visited upon him? He trundled over to the crumbled figure looking to see if the hands had dropped anything. An unregistered weapon of some sort that might betray an equally enigmatic mission to explain his presence in the tenant’s world. The man did not feel safe enough to turn on a light but went to the desk drawer and pulled out a small flashlight. The term generic seemed most fitting for the deceased’s attire. A gray wool overcoat covering a plaid wool worsted sports coat. The trousers completely nondescript the evidence of their age being the shiny reflection of the seat of the pants and knees. The Oxfords scuffed and worn each sole evidencing a the degradation of overuse. Though he stood hunched over the corpse directing the flashlight to these various details there was a gulf of hesitation to touch the corpse. Carefully he nudged the body with the ball of his foot. Then he kicked it still not eliciting a response. The mass of the thing resting totally inert and unaffected by the man’s irreverent gesture. What to do? Call the cops? “Yeah sure!“, he spoke to himself cynically. Was there anything he had to hide? Drag the corpse out of here and dump it somewhere! “Yeah?“, his voice chimed in as if in the role of his own adversary, “And if you get caught in the process?”
A wave of disgust came over him. Anger clouded his vision. He took two steps back and collapsed in his easy chair staring at the freshly deposited lump of clay in the middle of his living room. “I have to think this out!“, he repeated to himself. A stillness about the scene that defied time and eternity providing the mental amphitheater within which to hold court for the decisions that would inevitably remold his future existence in a manner that was so totally unexpected. The mystery of the motive of this stranger in picking his doorway amidst all others coming to mind. What secret enemies did he unexpectedly possess? What splinter group considered dangerous to the underlying powers that be did he belong to? Was this a simple mistake? A chance mistake on the part of the victim who may have transcribed an address wrong? Had he given an unpardonable slight to another? A man? A woman! The impetus of the motive now lost from the figure before him might provide the key to unlock the dilemma of how best to proceed. One by one the mental picture of each of theses shadowy presences cycled through his head. Repeating and repeating until his head began to ache. He looked over to a side table and saw the central instrument to his dilemma? The .45 lay upon the flat surface with its barrel pointing towards him. The sound? The sound! Why had it not brought anyone to his door to inquire? Some entreaty to the police to investigate? How long had it been? Minutes? Hours! Would there be a knock at the shattered ‘presido’ of his front door and a unsympathetically gruff voice demanding entry?? Should he call a lawyer? he could hear his own heart beating in his ears. How could he erase the evidence? There was the body and the challenges of removing it without anyone noticing. The shattered glass of the coffee table and the blood. The carpet would never look the same. A telltale stain leading immediately to a suspicion of wrongdoing by the unit’s owner. He looked back over his shoulder to the front door. The first rays of morning light reminding him that there was an undisturbed top lock. If the incident had gone undetected by the outside world thus far then perhaps there were alternatives?
If he waited and simply did nothing sitting there and was discovered there were possibilities as well. The body undisturbed the crime scene untouched. Would he even have to be here? Perhaps, if no one had seen him he could cop to have not having been home. The gun could be left here cleaned of his fingerprints. Maybe impressing one of the corpses upon it? Make the bed and leave the apartment through the back stairwell and go somewhere for a day or two leaving the door ajar! But who could wreck that plan? He had no apparent friends in the building. Yet could there be someone that he might not been aware of who would have kept mental track of his comings and goings? He opened his eyes looking up from the two sets of finders that had been furiously rubbing them deeply into their sockets. It was all so, “If this or that, then the following!” All of it leading back to the same conclusion of that crumpled interloper. Would that he could singly open the window and tumble his frame outside to the pavement below! He looked over to the windows that stood opposite over a block a way. The same ones that were now blinded by the rays of the early morning sun. The reelected brilliance suggesting that no one format hat direction would be able to notice much in his direction. The mad idea gripped him that he had nothing much to lose in any case. Immediately he was on his feet going to the gun and wiping it thoroughly within and without with a cleaning solvent. The automatic now expunged of its owner’s fingerprint identity, he shoved it in the back of the corpse’s belt and throwing the window open as wide as possible. The holiday weekend had left the street deserted save for a couple of distant taxis passing indifferently on the next block over. Summoning some deep level of unholy obsession he grabbed the body around the waist and manhandled it forward head first over the sill. The inertia of his effort powered by the built up rage of his despair sending it over the edge to tumble down arms and legs flopping into empty air. The window of his apartment was down and shuttered as the impact of the thing sounded far below as a distant dull thud. Seven stories up his blinds were now drawn as he bagged and boxed the remnants of the table’s glass. He decided that he would shred the rug into small pieces dumping bleach over it then sealing the box up with packing tape. The two packages could be taken down to a remote location and dumped in the trash.
How might he explain the door? He wondered? Then it hit him. He would make up the bed to be on the safe side and report an alibi for the damage to the management on Monday morning that he had gone out the previous evening gotten drunk and not finding his key broken in himself. It was only in the light of dawn had he realized that he had acted too precipitously and provide the compensation for the damage. It might work he thought. At this point it didn’t matter. No one could directly prove anything one way or another and any inquiry format he authorities would like any other stormy incident in his life come and go. It was up to fate and destiny anyhow if he survived this mess. It was better to continue with this craziness and see it all the way through keeping his mouth shut and saying as little as possible. The boxes under his arm he walked to the stairwell and proceeded down the seven flights to the ground floor and back entrance out into the alley carrying his parcels. By the time he returned some half an hour later walking slowly down the sidewalk and working mightily at looking as unconcerned as possible a small crowd was gathering. He continued up to the front entrance of the building carrying a paper cup of coffee munching a half-consumed danish before the melee. A couple of squad cars were haphazardly parked in both pointed in the wrong direction on either side of the street the occupants of same various tasks of fending off pedestrians from the crumpled mass on the pavement. The wail of a siren of an ambulance approaching from afar building as a man in plain clothes was scribbling down an account by a middle aged woman. Her tiny barking dog endlessly at the end of its leash. “So you say you were walking your dog and you came up on the body laying here and there was no one else on the street?“, the detective droned as he recited from his note pad. The building’s doorman greeted the man inside as he walked unaffected to the elevator. “Bad business Mack!“, the burly man scowled shaking his head before the controlled feint of his opposite’s blase expression. “I told the management that too much has been going on in the neighborhood with gangs and shootings!” “Maybe this character on the roof?” “I hope we don’t get sued!” The man nodded with vacant sympathy as the doors to the elevator opened. “Yeah!“, he turned and offered! “You can never tell what someone will do next!”
If one writes for the simple pleasure of it then that is one thing. But don’t write for the sake of a profit. Then you will find yourself hitching your cart up to a delusion of riches and notoriety to come. “Opinions are like assholes!”, it has been for so long restated. Maybe the discussion would be less polemic if one juxtaposed ‘mouths’? To simply ride along the soapy bubble sliding into common popularity betrays any trust one might have had with their own truth. Why challenge someone else’s posthumous longstanding success? Posthumous authors remain ever the most popular! Even if their physical forms are not quite dead yet. The act of instilling a ‘knock off‘ in the covert sense of same of working around the edges searching for a slightly different hook is no better than selling your soul to the market. Fame and riches are not for everybody! Especially if they come up short in disinterest for another unrepentant individual. Dare one tell their real fantasies and dreams and see how long that any readership for their thoughts would remain? Yet it is the unbounded animal within that lurks without care of opinions that fascinates the most in the long run. The rest is artifice. A convenient cage of words to contain the latest rare attraction and keep it from consuming the all too willing flesh of the envious public. How the endless futility of murder and horror warms the heart of millions. To see a wolf’s head soaked in blood fresh from the carcass of its last victim suddenly confront one’s favorite avatar and then marvel at the incongruity of his unbelievable escape. Vicarious thrills in the underworld of Hellish unspoken dreams! To be both victim and perpetrator in one breath but then be redeemed by the last stanza of the last paragraph. The order of the universe as reflected in the current underwhelming mismatch of society once again restored. The reassuring imbalance that all of society reflects one because they are simply weak vessels.
So many lives undisclosed living innocuously rotting slowly within acme longitudinal nineteen-thirties vintage Manhattan apartments. You’d never know that they were there! How do they survive but in the best way that they can? Taking on the roles throughout a lifetime without complaint that are handed out much as they are given. Struggling mightily to succeed until one day they are too infirm any longer to try. Deposited upon a sofa near to unmoving peering out that same picture window to the new building across the street. Their partners rough and tumble type cut from a savage cloth that you would not expect. All roles reversed in this age. A bantam weight woman slugging it out in the ring. Her manager just some guy from the neighborhood that looks like he should be selling drugs on the local street corner but does not. Short deals transacted by word of mouth in dark hallways before old building elevators. The carpet bruised beneath them by a hundred thousand lifetimes of anonymous footfalls. That feint smell of human urine in the vicinity of a far off corner. Some aging interloper that has lived here forever but has not yet been thrown out. Clinging to their borrowed birthright mentally incompetent when it comes to no where else to go. Cystic fibrosis and the remainder of their dead parents investment portfolio to sustain the rent. That old dried out hope in dark plastic pill bottles labeled by the old drugstore that used to be several blocks away on the boulevard amidst all the honking car horns of day. No one goes out anymore at night! The urban grid along Broadway filled with cabs their inestimable number of headlamps breaking past old blinds and curtains providing a light show upon many an empty ceiling. That same showy figure gazing at the opposite wall inert and perpetually taciturn as an ancient sphinx. The flicker of youthful follies playing across the weathered stone. The quiet rush of nighttime. The sound of the external a quiet comforting sea of perpetually restless regrets. Humanity swelling threading to all exhale synchronized at once. Several more no longer moving every once and a while police called carried out by attendants in the dead of night. The barren emptiness of musty presences refusing to so quickly fade away. No route to an easy Heaven there. Or anywhere . . .
It was a terrible thing to realize much less dream. Your own kith and kin demoted to a throw away. Maybe for a stranger it seemed an incidental in a care less uncaring world where the emotions of another were simply a doormat to be tread without a second thought. But it meant something to me. Something most significant . More significant than all the cares of all the people in the world. That sad little melancholy almost trembling voice resigned to insignificance of eternity to be forgotten as if by social necessity of arbitrary standard procedure served up to accommodate the many/ But in the process, satisfy none. I don’t know how such an absurdity could come to pass but I found myself led into a public room in some common space. A ‘jungle Jim’ rudely constructed to hold the various components of disembodied spirit in many pieces that like some university reactor under the stands of a football stadium was a matter of spacing and juxtaposition of different elements. Its overall structure designed to do something greater than its individual pieces. Something made up of the lingering souls of the past. It hurt me to see my mother’s entity divided up into a series of small brown polyethylene waste basket. The most pathetic of which held her quavering voice which called out to me in trembling irresolution, “I’m OK!” Buried underneath the three dimensional crossword puzzle space from of sticks and slats and similar containers. I looked down and felt her pain crease my own heart taking up the pathetic bygone receptacle. Ashamed and embarrassed that it had come to this. That she had been demoted to this. I carried her to my own room through the quiet of the hallway. Looking down into its emptiness and noticing a tear in its side. Determined to give whatever awkward solace to this last remaining portion of her. Wondering all the way how life’s mystery could be so cruel to someone, that in my own estimation, had deserved so much more.
How obsessive and mindless and strange to be constantly captive of the animal obsession to find sanctuary in the act of coitus with another? For men of my age and physical condition too often nursing a figment of the actual in the mind. A soap box racer of a fantasy cobbled together by scant memory of long lost intimacy ignited liberally with mental images. Some gleaned from the printed or posted. A catalogue of the desirable and safely distant to mold like clay into a brief and convenient avatar. All dressed up like chicken prepared so daintily and pristine with pink mental ‘pom pom’s‘ covering each of the ends of the bony drumstick joints. The mechanical tug and stroke perhaps d’rigor but ever the least potent aspect of the artifice of such an arranged virtual experience. The inside of one’s mind the most fitting amphitheater to hold this conjured spectacle. One’s self somehow working their way amidst the center stage? Some singular offbeat notion being the starting point to rescue one from the banality of the same old cycle of narrative. That series of past events that now fractured like shards of a mirror taped back in place give a distorted appearance to the seance held with some event long far past pleasurable encounter now near to forgotten. A beautiful portent of longing of another for you in the brevity of a smile. The offer of a passing ‘come hither’ glance. The endless forever mysterious allure of the courting ritual that in so many ways unconsciously proves to be the source of much of our own will to survive another day. How simplistic? How facile? How odd when one reduces this nagging persistent impulse to its elemental workings. Something that must not be tampered with lest one despoil the small amount of chance one might have to be carried away by it. Not simply a release of excess of testosterone or estrogen by mechanical stimulation leading eventually to a temporal overproduction of dopamine. But a complex mental ritual of self-affirmation declaring silently through the halls of one’s own universe that, “I am worthy and valuable and desirable as any other!“, if not more so? Some thing safe from censure by an unexpected unwillingness of a suddenly uncooperative partner. The ultimate ego boost casting one into the mental fiction of physical omnipotence. A point of solace in a shared emptiness of an overpopulated world of endless professional indifference.