Friday, September 28, 2007

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


You scored as J.S. Bach, You are dedicated and intelligent. People who know you don't understand how you get it all done, and you never give up on life.

J.S. Bach






Hector Berlioz




















Which classical composer are you?
created with

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


"Oh Narcissus! When will you tire of that paled reflection in that shallow pool so filled of thy mirrored self ? How unfortunate for this naked ape, to be so self-aware, and now aware of nothing else."

Friday, September 14, 2007



It was all about.

The water even...dry and dusty. Not really putrid. If you let it sit in the bottle, sand would fall to the bottom of the cut up plastic shell you use to scoop it up from the earth, and then, from the heat of the sun, it was so warm against the back of your throat you felt as if you'd need to chase it with some of the bottom sand, just to cool it off (your throat, that is).

Yeah, it was hot. And dusty.

The ground was cracked and craggled like an old woman's face, barren from years of depravation, and it too full of dust; gaping wounds in the mantle would remind you of the old gal's screams and laments as she cursed another day with that puckered, toothless grin.

Only the ground didn't smile. It just sat there, agape. Like a dead man's mouth.

Even the flies crawled through the cuts, looking for that drop of center-seeking dew.


"The rains will come again one day, old boy," the old man on the front porch said.

He leaned back on his wooden chair 'gainst the wooden shuts on the wood-framed store and spat his 'backer cross the dusty lot.

He took a swig off his RC.

"They always come back. Earth deems it that way. Even God wouldn't deprive a dying man a drink, no matter his fate after the fact."

Leyton just huffed.

Kicked the ground with his boot just to watch the tiny dust devils leap from the sandstone lot.

Then he huffed again.

"Reckon so, you ol' coot. But I'll tell ya...Ain't n'er seen it dis dry."

"Dry as an old man's dreams. Rain's ey'll come though. 'Ey always do," the old man snickered.

"Reckon I'll get back to the farm, old man. Cow's ey'll need feedin'," countered Leyton, exasperated and labored.

"You do 'at boy. Feed 'em good. See you round tomorrow," old man bit another chomp of his moon pie and spat dry graham cracker dust mixed with Penn's Thins tobacco juice across the decayed wooden porch right as he spoke.

"Feed 'em good boy. See 'at t'ey git plenty water too," he laughed long and hard.

"Yeah old man. Check! See you tomorrow you old coot. Don't choke on 'at moon pie uh yorn," and with that, Leyton began the long walk down the dusty road that laid out before him like all the rest of his born days stretching to that event horizon where for brief instant, those alley lines, left and right will meet before parting again to infinity.

And on his walk to that long, dusty home, it rain!

Life sustaining rain.

And, just like the road...

on it goes.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

The City of Man

The world it slogs and trudges on
the same dull battle every dawn
the veil unrolling cross the land
unrolling doubt in every man

No sooner does that sun arise
than man awakes and purpose flies
betrayed by light and roiling heat
betrayed to flesh and rotting meat

Though stalwart hearts arise at dawn
by noon all goodness long has gone
scorched by the world's relentless might
but empty husks before the night

So sleep does come and peace arrives
whatever grace a man derives
will empty soul and heart restore
to wake and lose the fight once more

Saturday, September 08, 2007

PM 13: In the Canteen

The disgorging of my stomach contents had left me feeling light headed and suddenly empty and ravenous. I was weak and wanted to lie down, but I seemed to have no choice but to follow Diot into the room.

It was a large room well-lit unlike the morgue with several long tables. And it was almost completely empty save for a few lean looking men and women sitting alone or in small groups. Two men were having an argument at one of the tables, otherwise the room was quiet. “This is the Canteen. Pamille should be showing you around. Not me. You won’t need to know anything about it really because you won’t be stationed here but I’ll show you where you can get some food. Then I’ll leave you.”

She led me to a long serving counter which we walked along as rapidly as was possible under the burden of our own weights. At the end of the counter she pulled out a small plastic tub from a cabinet and handed it to me. “Here. You open the lid up at the corner and drink it. That’s exactly one long shift worth there and you won’t be hungry. In fact you won’t want anymore for a while. I’d suggest you drink it slowly over there at the tables.”

“Where do I get something to drink?”

“You need to drink after each job. You’ll be provided drinks by your supervisor. I’m only giving you this because you haven’t eaten anything.” She gestured toward a place and as I turned to sit down she left the canteen. I sat down and began to eat. Hungry as I was I couldn’t control myself. It was grainy and sweet like the pulp of some fruit, thick but not at all sticky and it flowed easily. It was almost without color. I drained the container and regretted it immediately as it left a sharp pain in my stomach. There was another sudden wrenching of the room and I felt myself almost turn weightless. Again I was overcome with nausea but I managed to hold the food down. I could feel it in the pit of my stomach.

And then I sat there wondering alternately what caused that horrible lurch, whether Diot or Pamille would return to claim me, whether I was dreaming or dead and in hell and when and where I could lie down and sleep. The people in the room would get up and leave, others took their places, going up to the counter sitting at a lonely place at a table and slowly consuming the contents of the containers. When they talked, they talked quietly, in short staccato sentences primarily consisting in yes’s and no’s and about things I couldn’t begin to understand. They mostly were dressed in gray uniforms like mine most often, occasionally powder blue or peach but they were all thin and miserable looking. I must have been the most miserable of all.

The only real point of interest in the room was the two men arguing. They were dressed in black as Bud had been dressed and equally animated in contrast to all the others. The taller of the two was bald and skinnier than any of the others. His features were skull like especially as his lips were always curled back showing his teeth to the pale pink gums. As a consequence he looked like he was frozen between agony and hysterical laughing. He would lick his teeth with his tongue in a way that struck me as a kin to blinking. The other man who did more of the talking was smaller and more bent. Not fat but definitely more fleshy. He had thick lips which appeared to brutish to form words and eyebrows as bushy as caterpillars and a face with coarse skin and deep wrinkles. He was in a word ugly.

As others came and went these two remained in their animated conversation. I tried to concentrate and listen but try as I might my mind simply could not cling to their words and instead I kept returning to my own predicament. I do remember one small snippet however: “It’s no good!” the skull faced man said “You can’t turn them into anything more than passive participants unless you pump them full of chemicals. And then they’re psychotic and unmanageable. Yes, we can reason with them but they are completely pragmatic. All they want is recognition and power and they get it more readily from PULVA than from us.”

“Yes you see they do want something”, the brute said, “they think they deserve it. They think the way to get it is to follow the rules. But we can give it to them…”

“They don’t like to break rules. They don’t like to cut line. They get angry when you try to make them. Even now when amnesty comes along we’d lose half of them if we didn’t shoot them ourselves.”

Thursday, September 06, 2007

And then it hit him...

"But of course," he thought "organization!".

And with that, he began to become that ordinal creature that had interminably existed at his core. He shuffled a deck of cards, and in the dishovel, there it was. Plain as the nose on your face. It was order.

Everything he touched was again as it should be.

The deck, once a jumbled mess of suit and color, of rank out of rank and number following incongruent number now had become perfection and grace, and all with one, solitary shuffle.

"Diamonds, Clubs, Hearts & Spades - low to high, ace on high so that the flush so royal would show every time," it was just as he liked it...just as he needed it to be.

The weeks went by and shirts were ordered in his closet. The plaids, they were with plaids...solids with solids...all of them ranked in order of his colors from favorite to least.

Ties, they were ordered by texture and material, again by pattern and then by color.

His days would be numbered just as his suits, from low to high. It would always be a low day when he got down to his leasts, so it was incentive to do his laundry often to keep his moods good.

"Looking good, Darby!"

"Lookin' sharp there, Darb."

Every day the same exclamations, every day the same expectations. The comely lass, with the comely look.

"Looking good!"

"Felling good, thank you very much," came Darby's usual reply.

His humidor was ordered in accordance to the pungency of the smoke, and then again by color (from light to dark).

Brandies and wines were done likewise, and the spirits, by frequency of use (they really required no firm order, as from this consumption sprang dissaray, and he really did not care which of those he chose as he liked them all equally, and that feeling of power he'd get by pricking one card out of place; by twisting a tab collar slightly askew, or tying the tie in a half-windor).

One day ol' Darby would be buried, and it was said that somehow, there would be order there as well. Perhaps each decaying strand of DNA would be ordered in accord with his favorite building blocks, from the adenine to the thymine, guanine to cytosine and back again in endless combinations that together comprised his favorite order of what Darby McCray believed to be that perfect array of that man of perfectly arrayed perfection.


So imperfect.

Ain't it grand?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

PM12: An incident in the hall

The uniform was similar to those of Diot and Bud. The only novelty was in the color - which was gray with a white satin stripe - and in the undergarments which were rather tight fitting. The sleeves of the under shirt went down to my elbows, the under pants down stretched from waist to my knees. The shoes were integrated with the pants as was an under-belt. The loose long sleeve shirt had a hidden flap which snapped down onto the pants and over the under-belt. I put all this on with some difficulty but I found that the more I moved the steadier I became. And though the pull of gravity seemed to always be driving me downwards I was compensating quickly. All my movements, I noticed however, seemed to have slowed down.
There was a small backpack like the one I saw Bud using, which I hesitated to put on because of its feminine appearance. It was surely intended to be part of the uniform. I picked it up to give it a closer inspection. As I stood there looking at it, a door at the end opened noisily. I would not have even noticed but for the shuffling movements of Diot.

“Presentable.” She said.

I swallowed hard. “Yes.”

“It goes on your back if you are trying to figure it out. You’re geared up as a flight technician. That might not be what you turn out to be but there’s always a shortage of them and they are easily trained and so can be rather stupid.”

I took the insult as indifferently as she gave it and awkwardly put the pack on.

“Well, now let me take you to the canteen.”

I left the walker behind and followed her out the silent door and into a large and empty hallway. I was shuffling in the same manner she did. “Walk this way.” I mumbled to myself. She emitted an inquisitive hum. “Nothing.”

“From the little I’ve seen of you, I begin to think you might be a smart-ass.” I was quiet. “The whole earth is full of your type… or at least your type is the only one that are stupid enough to get recruited. Why do you think that is?” The hallway was rough hewn stone like the room I was just in but broken by the occasional door.

“Where was I just then?”

“You mean where you got dressed or where you woke up?”

“Where I woke up?”

“That’s a reclamation room.”

“Is that like a morgue?”

“I’m not sure what a morgue is. We don’t use that word. But I suppose you are thinking of the other bodies. Yes there dead and its my job to reclaim what can be reclaimed before disposal.”

“It was rather large and empty.”

“Yes, it doesn’t get as much use now. We’re all hoping we’ll be busier. I hate it.” She paused. Maybe she had surprised herself by her frankness. “I mean I hate the fact we’re not busy. But I hate the job too. I hate touching things. I hate pulling the chips. Not as much as most people. I have a high tolerance apparently though I am not like you. I am engine.” I thought the word was engine but she pronounced it stressing both syllables. “But I hate the boredom worse and I hate the fact we’re not winning. That’s how it is here. I hate it both. But good news for you. You won’t get a job like mine any time soon that’s for sure.” Her accent was strange to me. It was not foreign but seemed slightly twisted. The way she said reclaim was like the truncation of the longer word reclamation with a short “a.”

The floor suddenly lurched, and I had the dreadful sensation that I was spinning. The unexpected disruption led to the unsettling of my stomach and I keeled over and vomited. Diot’s reaction was sudden and fierce. Her eyes opened wide and she almost leaped to the other side of the hallway and began to scream at me.

“Oh just great! What a revolting mess! What is the matter with you, can’t you walk 100 yards without doing something completely disgusting? I’m not going to clean that up. I am not going to clean that up. It wasn’t in my room. Someone else can clean that up.”

I caught my breath and began to apologize but she didn’t seem to notice me. Then from the other end of the hallway emerged the lumpy form of Pamille. “Diot.” Came the pleasant voice. “Calm down. You don’t have to clean anything up in the tunnel. There are other people to clean.” Diot almost immediately quieted down, but the baleful expression on her face remained.

“It’s not my job. The bodies, that’s okay. And the blood, that’s okay too. But not that.”

“You still need to take him to the canteen.” Diot composed herself and started to walk back down. Pamille, gestured with a leathery arm for me to follow and, enlarged and elongated her eyes with an abrupt nod of her head as if to give me a look saying “What did you expect considering what you just did?”

The Ninian remained at the site of trauma. I caught up with Diot who was shufflimg at double speed. She shrunk away as I approached. “Haven’t you ever been sick before?” I asked in a desperate sounding voice. The vomit had been orange and frothy and some remained on my chin. I tried to wipe off the remnants on my sleeve, but the material was synthetic and water repellant.

She refused to look at me “No! And I don’t plan to be. That’s something you do.” With those words she turned towards one of the doors which slid open with barely a whisper at her approach.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Our Precious Faith

For it was of a year not unlike other years in that of this quaint past of this provincial town there was this church of pews and altars and the prayer bench, and the Sunday school class room - all filled to overflowing.

They were filled with people, whose eyes were filled with tears.

There was gnashing of teeth, and rending of clothes.

There were hugs and pats and warm embrace and handshake, galore.

Shouts of praise filled the halls, a halleluyAh symphony of angelic proportion played on every heart, and together they were a chorus, an army of spiritual praise, of love, of adoration for the divine "He".

At once there was sadness. At

Elation filled this palace, and together they would bump heaven's ceiling (would heaven be bound).

Their's was a happiness not of this earth...not of this dirty realm...somehow in their joy, even the firmament, earth itself in its peaty dearth, it too seemed cleansed in their praise, and in His presence.

The pain, that presence, the suffering, that joy - altogether in Love they came, and in the name that is, our precious faith!

And about their lives they would go, filling streets and restaurants and sidewalk cafe's...there they would go about their happy, little lives in this happy little town.

Together they were one, and in the one, they were together.

And this, their precious faith would carry them, through yet another week - driving them, keeping them whole, keeping them together. They would share words, and phrase and even praise all through the live-long week until together again they would gather in and of that precious, precious faith.

Together they were, and how not unlike that gathering on distant shore; the symphony at once is one, and yet composed of so many, many...many souls. The souls of the ages for this moment in time are altogether one in the precious faith.