On the scent of mangoes and my most traumatic experience

On the scent of mangoes and my most traumatic experience

Anyway, since the mangoes take too long to fall on their own, the game was to use projectiles to gently encourage them to come down. These weren't projectiles like those that used to fill the night sky when there was fighting in the streets, as my family lied huddled together in the middle of the house in the hopes of avoiding a stray bullet. No, our projectiles were actually simple rocks. They were a lot cheaper than bullets. 

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Where the hell have I been?! And where the hell am I going?!

So where have I been? After Emma and the Minotaur and it's resounding success (my mother bought like 2 copies and my dog chewed on a proof a little. He didn't like the taste very much. "I'd rather eat broccoli" were his exact barks. He does like broccoli though so I don't know what he meant. But I totally understand. Broccoli is delicious). So, after Emma the first one, I took a moment to enjoy its success (2 copies and a chewed up proof), I got to writing the promised sequel. It says so at the back of the first book: Coming soon: Emma and the Prince of Shadows. "Soon" has sort of come and gone.

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Melodramatic update on the birds that I haven't stopped talking about for the last week or two

They have done it. The little birds have taken flight out of here. The nest is empty, though not nearly as empty as my heart, since there are still bits of feathers, feces, and trash in there. In the nest, I mean. There are no feathers or feces in my heart, as far as I know. I asked my doctor and he just looked at me in disgust and scribbled in his notepad. I took a peek at his scribblings: "please go skills me Wht won't he stop om here eying." I'll have to google all that medical jargon.

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Some birds in a tree at work. Also, relativity or something.

Some birds in a tree at work. Also, relativity or something.

There is an old yellow bench behind work. It's where people go out to smoke. There is also a tree out there who's always sitting on the bench. I'm not sure exactly how trees (or birds, for that matter) actually work but I think that's the general idea behind what it's doing. See, the bench was there first, up against the building's back wall, and then the tree decided to grow under it from a crack in the ground. Then it grew up through it and around it and then over it. So, really, the tree is sitting on it. 

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(WIP) In Her Shoes

(WIP) In Her Shoes

This is a snippet of the story I'm currently working on. It's a small little bit I like. The setting is my (wildly inaccurate) version of Villaviciencio, Colombia, a town where all human things are very, very quiet for some mysterious reason. They are talking about my own (wildly inaccurate probably) version of New York City, United States of America. a town where all human things aren't very, very quiet, for not mysterious reasons.

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The Visitor

When I was a boy I spent my summers at my grandparents' house out in the country.

Those times were when I found my living conditions to be most suited to my temperament. I have always been that solitary figure wandering off into the distance with no seeming purpose or direction. The farm suited me well for it was the only man-made structure within sight but for the worn road that lied some ways in front of the property and the small wooden bridge beyond it, which was the means for passing over a small stream that wound its way through the plain and down into the forest. There were smatterings of trees here and there on the plain but it was flat otherwise, though it sloped down in a gentle way until it reached the woods.

I spent my days back then wandering along the side of the stream, following the flow of the water to see where it would take me. I set out each day with the naive and impossible mission of finding the place where the stream ended. I knew little about geology then and didn't have any notions whatsoever about what I would find at the terminal point. It didn't matter very much because there was always some distraction along the way that prevented me from going very far. Here or there among the pebbles in the stream would be a shinier or smoother one, or one coloured in a peculiar way, essentially demanding that they be made into a collection. I had no choice but to oblige them.

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The Ocean Voyage of Nathan of Whitford

The records are ours.

Somewhere away in the land, beyond the reach of men like myself, of the masses that make up the majority of this world's impotent inhabitants, there are those who have been charged with the constant care of the records.. Some believe the record-keepers slave away in great caves underground in semi-darkness, away from the elements and the unpredictability of all things, while others claim that the keepers inhabit open palaces that are filled with shelf upon shelf of books from every age of the world. Whatever the truth may be, it doesn't really matter much to the population at large. Keepers are selected at random from birth and are soon taken away to wherever it is that they are to spend their lives in our service.

It was away in that place that a keeper held a lottery and my name happened to come up. It was because my name had come up that an official-looking man now stood banging away at my door. I rose from my meditative position on the floor and walked to the and pulled at it but it resisted, preferring to remain closed. With some effort on my part, the door relented, but it wouldn't remain ajar without a constant application of force, so I found myself outside with the official-looking man who had only watched my struggle.

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God Hires a Birdman

God exists, and he once hired a birdman.

A short time after creating the heavens and the Earth, God summoned a man named Harold to the gates of heaven. Harold was a birdman. He wore overalls and glasses, and he had a halo of white hair around his head. He was a short, kindly old man.

God met Harold at the gates of heaven.

“Good morning,” God said. It was always morning back then for night was not yet a concept.

“Good morning,” said Harold.

God took Harold by the hand and led him down a golden path among the clouds. As they walked, He explained to Harold the situation and why he needed a birdman. Something new, something different, had been found in a corner of heaven.

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Apollo Goes Grocery Shopping

I go around to the back of the house and enter through the yard because the back door is always unlocked. There is a great big fence all around that is only broken up by the big red gate that I just came in through. I leave the big red gate open because Apollo can't open it on his own.

Apollo is my friend. Apollo is a dog.

I go into the house through the unlocked back door. It is very quiet in here because no one is home except Apollo. He usually never leaves the house for very long. I walk to the biggest bedroom because that is where he likes to nap during the day. I find him lying on the big bed that belongs to his parents. I sit down on the bed beside him and stroke his fur coat. He notices me and his tail begins to tap on the bed. Tap tap tap, he says. This is how my friend says hello.

Tap tap tap.

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Vampires and their Irrational Fear of Cats

Decker pulled up to the mansion. His old truck rumbled and kicked up thick clouds of dust. He turned off the engine and stepped out, shotgun and flashlight in hand. Glancing up at the sky he saw that the sun was already on its way down. His wristwatch showed that it was a little after three.

He walked to the back of the truck and checked the heavy walk-in safe that he had strapped down onto it. He regretted that finding this place had taken so long and now felt certain that they would be sleeping in there tonight. Opening the safe, he looked over the supplies inside, making sure he hadn't forgotten anything.

As he started to make his way toward the front door of the decaying mansion, Chomsky let out a shrill whine from inside the truck. Decker went back and tried to rub him behind the ears but was rewarded with a scratch from its small claws. He shook his head and then poured water into a bowl out of a large cannister and set it down on the seat so the animal could drink.

“Professor Chomsky's his name,” the seller had said, a young girl with long and dirty black hair, but Decker seriously doubted the cat's credentials. He and the cat had been together for a few weeks but seldom on speaking terms. He tried to assure the animal that he wouldn't be gone for long then stepped out again and walked to the mansion.

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The Music in the Forest

In an old forest there lived a faun.

He knew the names of all the trees and he spent his days wandering among them and talking to them with the music of his flute. The faun was as old as the woods and he remembered the days when the forests were immeasurable in size and filled the whole Earth, before the time when the forest creatures had fled and the humans had come.

Today, there were two humans in his forest now. The faun was following them, hopping from behind tree to tree and watching as they ran. There was a little boy in blue and an even littler girl in red. They were running and laughing and occasionally tripping and falling.

Eventually, the two children ended up rolling around on the golden leaves that littered ground. They laughed as pushed and teased each other. The faun smiled and a wicked glint lit up his eyes. He was glad to be back in the human realm.

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Clock Tower

Tick and tock, so goes the clock,
It tocks and talks and stalks
The lively ones and mocks
The ones who try to run and balk
The walk on down the final dock.
This trip, this time, this life ends in a dive
Into a sea where sharks they flock, ‘n’
Overhead the hawks they squawk
When broken souls
They grate and knock against the rocks,
Fresh pickings are they
And stock anew from the building blocks,
From the lies and stones and double talk
That slips on past when’t the stars we gawk
And miss the outline made in chalk of
The capital stock,
The common dream,
The future promised, bored and pocked,
As dead as you, as on you
Walk your lastly walk on lastly dock.
And the clock looks on and
Tick, tick, tock,
And tock, and
Tick, and
Mock.

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Light of Lies

Pass me by
On your way
To places
The damned may not enter,
But spread your wings
So that I may follow
Their shining light -
An empty hope, false hope,
But more than you’ve ever given.

A little light,
A small sign that ahead’s
Where better things lie,
Lie, lie, lie
And give the sign,
Persuade with ease
My heavy feet
t’Trod on forth
Toward your light.
It’s a light of lies
That guides my path,
A fool’s false fortune,
A fraud, a forged façade.

This lying hope
Is the hope that I embrace,
Until another hope
Long unhoped for
Comes on along,
Along my weary way.

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Puppet

Surprised by a touch on my face,
I look up and see that the hand is my own.

On days like this I’m not myself,
These parts that surround me are strange,
Alien and independent but
By the strings of the puppeteer
They are restrained.
With some trying effort I can pull the twine,
Direct here and there the pieces that should be mine.
But th’endevour is taxing,
The repeated episodes
Exhausting.

Some look at the puppet,
At the strings that I pull,
And they say: (it is) “Courage!”
I think of the word when I find
My will collapsed behind locked door,
The strings untaut,
The limbs heavy and still
Though a sob now and then shakes the
Construct that I at these times inhabit.

When the body draws itself together to the floor,
Spent,
Wasted,
Emptied of will,
Haggard and
Jaded,
The effort to hold the parts together
And to pull the strings
Is lessened, and some measure of comfort is gained.

But one cannot remain behind the locked door,
For “Courage!” they say,
And hiding is not.

One musn’t disappoint.

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The Fire in the Waste

A place.
My winters have been longer,
My hands more callused,
My hopes more scarred.

Envision expanses of endless white snow
In a land to’ard north beyond all that you know,
A cold so cold on land so bare,
A nightmare in white
Where neither winds nor change’ll dare.

In the stillness find a lonely tree,
Its twins far away from all you’d hope t’see,
Evergreen amidst the white,
As near to shelter as you could find
In this suffocating shroud of frozen night.

In this country there is no fire,
No love, no warmth, no sweet desire,
No progress and no regress,
No comfort in the cold,
No safe embrace nor healer’s caress.

The woman is here with me.
For years we’ve grasped the tree
And together we’ve felt life’s bitter taste.
Unexpectedly she turns and says,
“Tell me the mysteries of this waste.”

I stand,
Recite,
A fire ignites.

As I speak
I understand and see.
Thoughts form the words and the
Words morph the thoughts.
For the first time I see her,
I glimpse that it’s me and she.
The waste is but loneliness,
A contradistinction unto which
Love is made to gleam.
By destiny, fate, fortune, or circumstance
Brought to find one another,
To light twin sparks in parts
Unreached by snows or blights.

She does not see,
Night comes and day again,
Her heart resists.

It’s a strange phenomenon
To hope for something not understood,
To wish to light a fire across a void,
Through space,
And place in another an alien feeling.
“I understand,” she says, but she means the world,
The words I speak, not the feelings I feel.
Frustrated, I sit, and the end begins.
The nights grow long as hope grows weak.
The spark that was becomes a mote of failing light.
Time is long,
The world is cold.

Must it end as it began?
The cycles repeat for the mysteries deepen.
The fabric of the world is made of
Strands forever intertwined,
An ultimate enigma, never solved,
Each door opened reveals a myriad more,
A bewildering conundrum of secrets and riddles.
And so she asks again,
“Tell me the mysteries of this place,
The ones I know not, for the old,
The ones you’ve told before,
Those I puzzle over no more.”

I stand,
Recite,
My spark I hide.

I look to the horizon,
Away from the face I’m pained to see.
The fire inside is stifled,
All but tendrils now.
I hope no more for her flame to join my own.
I speak again and sing the song–
An interruption.
These words she knows
Having conjured them on her own.
“Move on, on and on, along,
These songs I know,
In thoughts I dreamed and saw
The words that changed the thoughts.
The mind conceives conceit and
Out and through it leaps,
Onto words it clings.
The words, in turn, impress their touch,
And stir and sway the theme itself
From whence they came.”

I feel the change, and
I turn from the sky to look in her eyes.
I look,
From bleary sun
To exploding stars.

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