[A literary quickie for Valentine’s Day.]
Duck Marston ran home and kissed his wife and patted his daughter’s head and asked them both: “Be Mine?” It was Valentine’s, that nasty holiday of love making, and despite all the chocolates and flowers Duck had brought, his women gave him little attention. The wife turned away so he kissed her by the ear, almost inhaling an orange ball of wax. His daughter took his pats like a surly dog and bit three of his fingers. The chocolates they threw away—“We’re dieting, remember?” The flowers went in compost. The girls were too disgusted by this desperate mewling man to explain that flowers were just twenty dollars to watch something die, and they already had front row seats—free of charge—to his life.
[Click here for “A Few Valentine’s Day Literary Cards.”]
[Click here for “everything you need to know about my love life in haiku.”]
One of my students wrote me a list of story ideas. Here they are:
- A girl turns into an animal. She becomes vegan when she’s human again.
- Time freezes then a General of the War moves people so that his side wins.
- High School Basketball game but they all have telekinesis.
- In the Civil War era, the battle from the spectators’ perspective. (There’s an additional note in parentheses that “people used to watch the battle.”)
- Lawyer and Doctors switch bodies for the day.
- Mom and Dad switch bodies.
- On Halloween, everyone who dresses up becomes their costume.
- One day, walls start talking and tell all about what’s going on in jail.
- Utopian society and there’s a Government meeting about what color the university should be.
On the back of the page is one last idea:
- All the founding fathers resurrect and go to war.
My paragraph piece “An Old War Hog” just published in Ghost Parachute, a magazine devoted to “fresh and vibrant imagery,” to “unleash[ing] the spider behind the rose.” The piece is small so I won’t ruin it with a summary. Just know that Ghost Parachute has an interesting format—every story is paired with an original image created by their artists. Credit for the picture above goes to Felix Sanchez.
My philosophy is a lone night, with the wife far-flung on the couch watching videos about tape worms. I’ve gone to bed early, and the rain is caught by the tree canopy, except for a black fall from the roof that taps the cement. In the dark it could be the crackle of fire. My philosophy is my beating heart compared to her’s. I can only imagine she still lives, eyes fixed on the doctor’s spool, trapped by elemental darkness.