Bio Note: I spent most of my working life as a criminal investigator. I am the author of Spear of Stars (2018) and Soulless Heavens (2019) published by The Red Salon. I collaborate with Providence based experimental musician, Alec K. Redfearn and Slovakian neo-classicist, Herr Lounge Corps in two very different projects which combine spoken word with original compositions.
Hollywood has ruined classical music. “Close your eyes,” disc jockey says “listen to the strains…” Adagio for Strings. Particularly bad idea since I’m barreling down Lowell Connector. For a moment I close my eyes, anyway. Brain should stretch melancholic around own life’s blue snapshots. I see instead 80’s actors playing army men; Proteus syndrome side show; & some winsome Parisienne who lives by her own rules. I see newsreels of state funerals; Presidents known by their initials. Barber must have been a sad guy in his twenties. The year he died a rough one for me. I should think of my own 1981; all I see is a movie screen. With no more eyeballs for trade with giants, nothing new comes from that well. Bolero plays next. I quit.
Mom is grating nutmeg into eggnog; sneaking a Marlboro from pack hidden on top of fridge. Steinway baby grand, feet can’t reach pedals. Pound thunder with left hand, out of time with steady click-clack emanating from wind-up wooden obelisk. “Give it a rest!” Snapped Dad taking bite of turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce on dinner roll, dollop of mayo Dropping impatient fists; Mallets against ivory and accidentals. Exhausted forehead drops to middle C.
Mean old witch. Rooty breath bitter in my nostrils, screams “You’re going to die!” I will, surely. Unlike you, I exist. Wave you away, back into childhood file of fading archetypes. You’d float outside my bedroom. Squeezed my eyes shut. Knowing if opened, your avocado kitchen face, would fill my window snickering at my helplessness. Look at you now, pitiful green witch. Crow black dress; enchanted airborne bicycle; spell bottle of teeth & piss. Can’t vie with everyday adulthood scares. Poor old witch, I almost feel lousy about it. Fly on comrade witch! You’ll get me yet one day!
©2020 Jason O'Toole
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