Saturday, January 26, 2008

City Lights

The city lights glow phantom like behind pyramids of glass and steel, forging a luminescent backdrop. Outside the city’s glass walls, the night is cold and dark.
They huddle around a burning steel can, their faces orange in the glow. Their hats and gloves are colorful, mismatched, and grimy. Greasy locks of hair dangle from under the hats. Fingers poke out of the broken ends of gloves. Jagged toothed smiles are lit by the firelight like those of jack o lanterns.
They jest and laugh defiantly, their eyes glittering with the knowledge of the street and the dark and this space beyond civilization. In the distance, a woman is screaming. The sound is strangled out by its companion noise, something unintelligible, similar to snarling.
They hear it. It barely scratches their surface, registering in the eyes as a momentary dulling. They continue to talk and joke and drink from dented tin cups passed round. Out beyond them a sleek train runs over a raised rail, noiseless en route to the dignified citadel. Beneath its trestles the pitch blackness yawns in on itself and the snarling slides back into silence.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Pan in the Twilight

The time is both sunrise and sunset and the light from a sun in transit cloaks the mountainside in shades of yellow.
There is a dark figure hidden among thick woods that blanket the protruding earth.
He stands alone, quiet and still observing the earth below. He is a deep blue silhouette against the golden light. His motives are mysterious.
Both man and deer, his form changes constantly.
Sometimes his horns protrude, in other instances, his legs and hooves are obvious simultaneously.
Everything is motionless, the woods, atmosphere, the entire solar system seem to stand still in this moment, not even the wind touches his fur.

Sunday, January 20, 2008


The house slouches amid the green grasses and yellowed weeds. The concrete paths roll out from the back yard and side porch into the waiting street. They are cracked with great seismic lines out of which crab grass and yellow flowers spring eager to consume man's plan.
On the little side porch there are two men sitting on wooden chairs. To their left, the backyard glows in predawn light. Fruit has fallen from the pomegranate tree and lies rotting among the brick border that has been pushed into disarray by the tree roots. The grass is tall and mingles with anything else that will grow, some of it alive and some of it dead.
There is a creature chained to the back fence. The fence itself is chain link interlaced with brittle wooden blinds. Vines littered with little purple morning glories cling everywhere to its surface. The beast is fastened to it by the neck with a nickel colored chain. So short is the chain that the creature must keep its face pressed into the vines and may not sit.
It stands upright as a man, dressed in jeans and a faded red flannel, but the face is all wrong. Its head is devoid of hair and ears, and something like a short snouted dog muzzle is filled with fierce spike-like teeth. Its deformities call to mind some transitory phase in lupine development, it is neither man nor animal nor even a fully formed monster.
A young woman in a white dress stands very near to it, singing soothingly. Her flaxen hair flows freely over her shoulders and her feet are bare. Capturing drops of dew from the leaves of the vines in one cup she pours the water from that cup to another in a single fluid motion. Without fear of bestial impulse, she gently pours the water into the creature’s open maw, singing its own song to it.