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July 17, 2024
There is the man on the moon. Go to him. Get bread from him, drink his water. Take your dog, Blue to him. Take your mother. She is skiing outside around the house. Stop her, tell her that Blue is going also. Take the gander, Henry. He is short in the legs. Leave me Iris. I have seen her eat feed in a pattern.
 
July 10, 2024
Marcie decided on Vertigo because she’d recently encountered several texts in quick succession that made extensive reference to it: Chris Marker’s time travel film told in still images, La Jetée, Terry Gilliam’s unlikely Hollywood adaptation, 12 Monkeys, and a story by Bennett Sims called “White Dialogues” about an embittered academic seething in an auditorium during a lecture being given by the hot new thing in Hitchcock studies. The coincidence made her feel involved with the film, and vice versa, in a way that evades more specific description.
July 3, 2024
We slapped together two clods of oak around a broken bedpan lid and twined them together with a horsetail. Realized then our discovery: the first knife ever. We go to Tony’s. Tony indicates our find—What is that shit?—and he slides us each a prairie fire: whisky, tabasco. Crab says, Maybe lean forward, Tony, and Tony, doing so, discovers the knife sinking in buttery smooth, right between his ribs.
 
June 26, 2024
Moments lately, I think I am on the brink of an epiphany, swept right to the threshold by, say, the pulp of a grape or the progress of a Beethoven sonata or some other spiritual force, and were I to cross over it, loosed into the light of that knowledge, it would also mean my days on earth are numbered, that I have understood all that is needed before this life meets its resolution. But each time I am held back, caught by the hem of my shirt, denied whatever I thought I might see, allowed it only in periphery.
 
June 19, 2024
I am sorry for not writing sooner. To be completely frank, I was afraid of receiving a response and knowing for certain that you’re finished with me. I am very troubled by the way we’ve left things.
 
June 12, 2024
It took place in London at the end of the seventeenth century—a man was spending the evening at home, often thinking of a friend of his, a woman, who was very ill, worrying about her, hoping she would live, when there was a knock on the door, and she entered, looking fine, thriving, in fact, and sat down in a normal way and began a normal conversation, though she seemed a little more serious than usual until he began to cry, at which she continued quietly, discussing things of the soul, aspects of time, and he began to sob, and she continued speaking quietly, as he sobbed and sobbed, and when he finally looked up she was gone.
June 5, 2024
I’ll just speak for myself. This seems to be the best plan. When you try to speak on behalf of others you run into trouble. See? Already I has become you, but I cannot be you. But you can come along with me, at my side if you like, even if my walk is a bit awkward and you probably want to move more quickly over the terrain. Probably you wouldn’t say “terrain.” You would say ground or path or street. These choices don’t amount to a disagreement, just a different habit of mind. The mind’s terrain. Just now my mind’s terrain is a bit foggy, a bit dreary. It feels, inside of this fog, quite empty, as if, when the fog lifts, there will be nothing but an expanse uninflected by things to see or do, undisturbed by names and places, recollections and glimpses into other times and other places.
May 29, 2024
A tree stump, leg’s length, scorched black. Dragging slowly through snow sand so as not to take down any of the edges. The grains leave a fine film on the hand. One of several wood pieces to help prop up the broken end of the vessel for repair. I am stranded, marooned, run aground. Struck from the sky by something unseen in the night. How I might attempt to lift the vessel onto the stumps by myself remains to be seen. I have been hauling the dead remains of trees to the site for days. Behind me always, a perfect trail of depressed sand snow snaking into the distance. The wind is merciless so there is no evidence of my circuitous journey. With each step, each push of the log, a gust comes and smooths everything away.
May 22, 2024
Now that the bumblebees are sounding in the yard, sprint to the garden store in your tank top with your poodle as if there is a headwind. Stub a toe. Hear the tick of the clock as you place your items on the trolley: a new houseplant, two and three: a philodendron since you already have a few and they grow so nicely. Pay for mulch. Get some stones while you’re at it. Some daisies for the back. Black-eyed Susans too.
May 15, 2024
The boy watches me tend the fry pan. First of November in a warm year. I was an old man this morning. Now it is night and I am still an old man. The good stink of hot fried whitefish rises in the kitchen and oak leaves have fallen, painted the hill red. I am an old man because my body does not move fast. I am an old man because I have seen change that is large enough to fit inside my body. The change I have seen is like a bent stick I have swallowed. It sits inside my chest. It might make a hole in something soon.
May 8, 2024
Why my mother don’t like me?
     I ask Ansin, my grandmother. I say, How it is my mother never did like me?
     She steups. Kiss she teeth. And smooth-out that news she was reading in. Raise it up again to give it a little flip. At the top. And you could feel the vexness in that flip too.
     I say, Is cause I ent got no father?
May 1, 2024
“You have fifteen minutes,” the cashier says. Repeats it, runs your card, matter-of-factly smiling like Iowa girls do. Brenda smiled that smile too—pleasant, courteous. No faking, no strain.
     “Any questions?” she asks.
     You poke a carousel rack of baseball caps in front of her register. It creaks a clockwise inch. Stiff-billed, nylon, mesh. Lots of American flags. This one with the cabin patch, stitched with “Home Sweet Home.” It’s a deep bluish plum, a color Brenda likes.
 
April 24, 2024
The July morning was alive with a sound in the air, strange communications, the acoustics of the big yard amplifying each rustle, each wave. Odd creatures glittering on the ground. Herds spread lavishly, a wilderness of transparent wings, bug eyes, a mosaic of glassy fragments. Glinting. They covered the grass, the sidewalk, covered the branches of the trees.
April 17, 2024
The sound reverberated in my sense of what was right and reliable in the world like drone weaponry, and what I wanted to ask was: what business have you left undone, and did you do a thing you so regretted that you can’t let go of it, was there a person you cut off, when sympathy would have been the better gesture, was there a person you trod on to get ahead in your sales job, speaking ill of them, so that they were forever harmed, did you say something awful about a friend in school, did you call a friend the worst of names in middle school, because it was a thing they said then, the boys did that, only to find, later on, that you loved that boy in a way . . . .
April 10, 2024
I do not like old water.

The water in the ocean is old

The lake is old

But maybe it’s not

Subject to the logic of time, of old and new.

Water.
April 3, 2024
To my beloved sense of security, it’s your perimeter
that draws its corners like a belt when it comes down
to eating frozen foods out of the ground, each unenvelopment a finer slice of skin, hooped up inside     a shuffle to which turns quicken around the other way, like Artaud said about dead bolts, skull-clangor, that rings out.
March 27, 2024
On my day off, I drove my aging father to his death in the quaint town he had frequented after the navy when he was bouncing between jobs. On the phone, two nights before the fated trip, was the first I had heard him speak of this place. Though I believed him, doubts soon set in, and I wondered whether his claim was a phantom of his condition.
March 20, 2024
Christmas Night lies bitter cold and silent over the capital, and all life seems frozen. Even the wind is still, and the stars flicker like minuscule fires that strive to keep life going. 
March 13, 2024
Ariadne struck the mast

Enraged. She     couldn’t sail, no

One had ever bothered to


Teach her, but the ship wouldn’t

Be still.     She had awoken

To find Thesus dead, his crew


Dead,     and at first she had felt

Relief.     
March 6, 2024
The purged caribou heart. First arctic 
meal prepared raw, before fire. Before fires

purpled meat, meat was ulued off to serve
an open mouth. First heart’s crevasses

stretched like caribou cut raw. Protoheart
raw in search of fire, red windburn revealed