28 February, 2011
25 February, 2011
24 February, 2011
23 February, 2011
21 February, 2011
The rain picked up and so did the wind, which was making it more difficult to see the road in front him. Schultz hated driving at night; he didn't see so good at night to begin with, but there he was, driving through the middle of nowhere in god fuck forsaken Iowa where they didn't believe in street lights, or in keeping the roads paved and even. Various parts of the road were in such need of repair that it felt like he was driving on one long washboard. He'd driven through so many pot holes that he was waiting for the axle on his car to snap in half; at the very least he expected to blow a tire. And just what the hell will I do then? he thought. Change a tire in the middle of fucking nowhere during a rain storm on a road with no shoulder? He didn't think it likely that he could call AAA in the event of something happening. He wasn't sure if there was even a mechanic nearby, and if there was, he wasn't sure that he would trust his car to any mechanic he might find.
It was, after all, a Fine German Automobile, not just some piece of crap Ford.
Even though he was careful to only go five miles below the posted speed limit, for the sake of safety, a large pick up truck had been riding his bumper for the last 10 miles or so. The high set lights made it even more difficult to see; they were a back light against the rain, reflecting off the drops in the sky and wetness of the state route in front of him. He thought of his grandmother, who went blind from cataracts. Is this how it starts? Am I going to wake up one day and not see anything at all? He could go to an optometrist and find out, he supposed. But Schultz didn't like doctors, or any ilk. Liars and pickpockets, his Uncle Carl used to call them. And Uncle Carl would know. He had been an insurance adjuster for over 30 years before he died of thrombosis.
After a while the truck sped up and passed him, splashing water all over the windshield, almost causing Schultz to wreck. The tail lights of the truck soon disappeared, swallowed by the darkness ahead. Schultz thought maybe the darkness was swallowing him, too, that maybe this was what it was like for his grandmother. Not all at once. So slow that you don't notice it. Not until there's nothing left to notice.
He looked at the clock display on his radio. He had a half hour to go and no real idea of how much farther it was. There were no markers, no signs. He wasn't even sure he was still on the same road. For all he knew he'd passed into a different state altogether. It all looked the same, even during the day. How in the hell was he supposed to find his way at night?
16 February, 2011
Palm Prose # 3
Before the fog rose up and swallowed the entire village, Board President and Matriarch Zelda Zoomowski sat on her front porch smoked the first cigarette she'd put to her wrinkled, hairy lips in 40 years and sucked the smoke into her withered lungs. As she exhaled, the cracked pavement, the dilapidated house, the empty storefronts, and rusty grain mill disappeared. As she felt the last wisp of the Pall Mall leave her mouth, along with the rest of her, Zelda's final sensation was a smile of sweet resignation.
14 February, 2011
Palm Prose #2
Hector wiggled uncomfortably in his desk chair. It was a cheap chair that had been designed for someone with less girth. Hector wasn't fat as much as he was just big. The chair wasn't old, but he knew by the sounds it was making that it wouldn't last long. Just as Hector turned to look at the clock on his cubicle desk -- he'd brought it from home because it was shaped like a hula girl and made him smile -- he felt Brad standing behind him. Hector knew Brad would tell him (again) that the clock was inappropriate for work. Hector imagined what it would feel like to make Brad's bones crack like the cheap chair frame. It was 4:45 in the afternoon on a Friday.
12 February, 2011
“Can't I get partially reimbursed?”
11 February, 2011
Palm Prose #1
Joe didn't think the day was going all that bad until he went to the store and saw the end corner display of small stuffed animals. They were right there on aisle 3 staring at him with vacant plastic eyes and sewn, insincere smiles, right next to a display of day old bread, in front of where the tampons and maxi-pads were. It was 9 in the morning.
09 February, 2011
Palm Poem # 5
We are living down our worst nightmares
Inequities a top our host of sins
That we have yet to account for.
The tent preachers beseech us
Lead us to dry river beds
And we are baptized in waves of dirt
And sendimentary rock
Back to our roots,
If you believe all those silly stories,
And we choke
On the decayed innards
Of forgotten grandfathers,
Praying for a deliverance
Beyond parched indigestion
Of the usual salvation.
08 February, 2011
And my body still aches. The
Old men at the bar swap stories
With the bartender. None
Of the stories make sense
Unless you've lived between
The same two mile markers
Your entire life,
And they have lived here so long
They know every blade of grass
By the direction it grows
In any given season. I have no stories --
Any I would tell
Lack context and meaning.
And like every joke, when you have to
Explain the punchline
It probably wasn't worth telling
In the first place. Two more shots,
07 February, 2011
Palm Poem #4
Deep snow drifts remind me
Of the desert. Arid heat
Smacks a different cheek
Than the arctic wind, but still
Of monsoon season and the
Great swirling clouds kicking up the dust
Making sun worshipping cancer collectors
Run for cover in a flurry of flip flops
And designer bikini tops that were not made
To wear in the water... in the same way
People bum rush the grocery stores before a blizzard,
Snatching up all the bread and water and toilet paper,
As if the apocalypse were coming
In the form of a lake affect weather pattern kicking around
The East Valley like a prehistoric ice age
Millenia before we had the words
To articulate our fears.
06 February, 2011
05 February, 2011
Palm Poem #1
She bought Easter candy at the store
Because the marketing boys
And the processed sugar pushers
Are in league against forgetful husbands
And sexually frustrated women
Who will never quite be able to master
The fine fine art
Of the inadequate apology
Nor will they ever understand
The absolute gravity of silence
In that moment after raised
Voices have rung themselves out
And all that's left
Are candy covered chocolate eggs.