Monday, July 3rd, 2017 – 7:28 pm

There is no feeling like it in the world. Most are afraid to jump, even though it is the safest way to change your future.

I’ve only jumped once and am no master, but it saved my life. Despite every injury, illness and dark silence in five desert decades, it has been proven again and again that I was never alone and never will be.

What is the furthest you’ve ever fallen? From heaven to hell or just the mirage between? Who’s to blame if each stage were your own making? How many feet have you already walked and ran, loved and swam and dropped into coffin and chasm?

It is safest to never sing. It is bravest to preach off key. Make a damned fool of yourself. Who can do that better than you? Learn to love and laugh when you’re alone. You should be the funniest, prettiest person you know.

Stand on the side, if your heart is weak. The wounds and tears are few as the laughs. So are the ecstatic leaps of lovers that help hope live and last.


Won’t you jump with me?

I set fear aside for a moment, an hour, a day, an eternity, to reach to the unknown, highest mountain, deepest ocean.

July 1st, 2017, I only fell thirteen thousand feet.

July 1st, 1988, I asked a girl to kiss me.

She said yes.

I am still flying.

Who Broke Me

Friday, June 30th, 2017 – 4:48 pm

“Who Broke Me”

If you’ve sat in my writers den, you’ve smelled one two-three-oh p.m. as easily as in a.m. again and again, any pair o’ empathetic systems can. Welcome on in, freely, if you would and will, if you’re experienced, you’ve already heard my story in fits and sparks, so much better than sun and sin impart. I’m tragicomedied wrong order from stop to stem to stammer lives stamen to start. I must’ve ordered it thus colored when the blood of us still acted like brothers.

I saw hell and heaven and tripped their liars in their own lairs, incognito in the lovely inbetweens. Why weren’t you there? I made a pact and a vow to save a killer, warm without whine and crushed by my own plush pushed pillars. I’ve met principalities you pretend to command. They’re not amused, mortal man.

I dreamed dreams from the beginning, wandering in tesseracts stretched farther than your doctrine taxed. I tasted magics you miss and mock while you’re faking miracles with dirty silver, wood and cloth.

I don’t always expose myself, but you’ve funded fare, fair and far. Part of my condition is an engine on my arm. Act my age, children, and save yourself some harm. Pair o’ Bulls both sighs of me, truth hid inside, for all you A’s and B’s to See I deal with eternal effing geometric sight.

That starts all my fucking fights. From family and friends and foes, some over to win, I slept and sliced my roots and vines to ribbons. I’ll make an isle maze from oils and lace for us to ease the fiction. “I” am the first word I was beaten for, too syllabic, hard and Different.

Who broke me but me. Who I am will say. It was someone wise and giving, only an honoree another day. I gathered my hidden pieces from your golds and gods and games, to rearrange the seasons, different man once again.

“Breath of Fenrir”

Wednesday, June 28th, 2017 – 4:25 pm

“Breath of Fenrir”

The first hunger was never collared or caged. The dogs are embers struck from her Coal, yet sad shadows of Mother. Mortal ears cannot hear red pads land on ash or sand, the rivers of sleep She laps and slithers in. A bargain was struck with us by our First Man and she promised to leave him a remnant to care for her sparks. That pact spared our people from the final fire and famine, but never slows her lunar tax and terror.

She rode and crept my foul dream with bared fangs and mercy. Once inside my tent, she weighed every heart before circling. Creeping new ice in my blue and red rivers yesterday turned bitter. It’s time. Now I’m to be crowned in crime and shroud, sewn only for the unclean or holy. Her hackles pointed at me only, so I became the broken lamp, the trial and tears of shame from the sin in our camp.

Some think she is a spider or snake, but I have seen her eyes. She refuses to touch blood until it runs black. My branches turned to twigs that they might fall with the other brittle leaves she collected before guest to our tribe. We hear her panting now, louder each night. No one may touch my tent until she has carried dry limbs home in Mother’s teeth. I whisper tender and ending verse to her child Last Moon, thankful for each patient, burning blue. Tonight I ride Fenrir back to the Tree of Ash.

Unwritten Lament

Thursday, June 15th, 2017 – 12:08 am

“Unwritten Lament”

I regret having
never written anything
I was given a final chance
to speak fire to stone
Hands and feet no more
Or eyes or ears
Yet we endure such screams
and tears and tearings here

What is the point of my story
being carved into lore
if the ones I loved
have all gone before
The more I touched their hands
the more their grip vanished
I loved too deeply and the end
came a final numb greater than
the first contractions and
smothers of suns

I don’t know how I am
supposed to act and feel
stuck here on the cold side
The clarity here is far too acute
You’ll swear minds are
playing tricks on you
You see each chance you had
to touch and love and forgive
and run and taste and breathe
and climb and paint and love
and love and lose and lose
and love anyway, deep and
deeper until your heart breaks

But we kept throwing that treasure
away for crumbs poisoned by
our own apathy and pain
I never took the chances
I spent every sunset and
some wise in a box of my
own build until my windows
curled up and died
That is when I learned
love is real but it was far
too late to pull the blind

The shift is never in
faces or songs
You have never even
heard a real song
most your life long
We only hear pitch and tone of
each other’s souls
We always have
The the char of coals shallow or
blazes cast either way
You see tragic black holes and
glaring unborn stars set in chains
of shame and warning
They call it inspiring
but it all happens too fast

What is important to include
in our unwritten laments
The ones nobody gets to
prepare and present
I’ll burn bright in your meantime
your spinning constellation prize
I heard women gather ’round
talking about a good man and
wondered where we might
find one of them

I died only a fortnight ago
You should have been there
I was warned to cry out
to the rocks that they might
avoid my crushing fate
And the angels said once
in a thousand years
a story breaks free
It bleeds through weights
greater than even loss or love
The devils were woken the same
millennia as their brothers
and gave me the same
warning in blood

They said my story might
rip through the dust and the
gems, cloud and fog of fear
that sleeps within
Both the lightbearers and
forgotten kin warned me this
might happen again
They said my words might
come to life and burn through
my wake three days blind

My story was meant to smoke
and rest with all the others
unspoken, unsung, unnamed
They said my luck would change
I still am waiting single file
for my name flew higher
and souls remixed 
If the guardians of the
stories are true
my useless gray will find
epic wing and ecstasy
as I became new
fire and old phoenix

Kinder Tinder

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017 – 12:18 pm

“24 hours?”

“No. You keep asking that.”

Her expression stone, her eyes move alone. She is really six foot tall. She only pretended to be so small.

“You have 30 minutes left,” she warns him.

If her lips moved up into a smile, you couldn’t have made or measured it.

“Will it hurt?” he asks.

“Oh for g… yes, you damned fool. Why would it be painless after everything we covered. Are you ready to relent? Recant? Or you can’t? Repent?”

“I said I was sorry!” he yelled.

Sam crawled back to silent sobbing, as if that could save a man. Soiled and sand running out of legs he would never use again. The stains on his couch told more of a story than he got a final warning to share.

“Nobody wants to see me, Sam. Nobody really wants one of us in the sheets. You should have thought twice. We have five minutes left. Let let me read it one more time.” she taunted in glassy still tone:

“I’m the man you need! Do you believe my Word when I say women are the weaker sex? Call me old fashioned but I’m man enough to want an angel in the streets and devil in the sheets! LOL I’ve broken a few hearts and you’re not the last. Are you strong enough to take a chance?!”

“You have a couple seconds left, Sam. Anything else for the camera? Anything for the parents of the girls I found? The ones I could talk to and the ones too broken to?” Angel asked.

“No! Are you…? Are you real?”

Sams sobs were real now. They always are when you feel your cord tug across the gray bridge.

“Of course, honey. I’m the lover you asked for and lady you never expected.”

Seconds to spare, now she was clearly smiling, once again. Every hundred years, seconds span for such a burnt soul undone.

“Oh honey, nobody believes angels are real until they meet one.”


“Blake and Black”

Thursday, June 8th 2017 – 10:51pm

“Blake and Black”

In the beginning, there was a bright light. When they smash your facade, it does not go red or black, but bathes your brains in a cooling white.

Stand aside, next to none, next to nothing, next to the crying version of yourself. Don’t worry, we will protect that little kid, both you and I. He looks familiar, doesn’t he? It’s our future movements they keep mirroring. 

Blame it on my damage, but what is your malfunction, soldier? When did fortune forfeit your fruit from the tree of life, traded for the love of so called holy men confides and missing bona fides? 

How warm is that tattered quilt at night? I gag on your dirty cups and laugh at her sister’s sideways looks. I never cared for the praise of men anyway. Please, take your broken legs and help yourself to mine on the way out.

Then he spake unto them in parables.

Elusive. Coy. Cute. Poor conduct for one of old holy summits, but you get used to the silence. We all miss Him and talk to Him every night and day.

I’ll be your weak thing. I’ll shame your drink tank with rants and visions. Our sort of think must be contained within the four walls of science or faith and you’ve yet to honor either.

The third refuge, a freedom I am not allowed to share with you.  

Pat my back. Pat my head. Pat your knife instead. I’m happy to go love blind to your back burning deadly intent.

But my crew isn’t.

They’re always watching.

More than you.

You should learn to watch for me and the riders four.

We’re coming for you.

With Him.

And a vengeance. 

Home for a Stone

Thursday, June 1st, 2017 – 1:21 am

And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. – Exodus 33:11

Vallejo, CA 1974

Robert Nulph was the first best friend I loved and lost. They didn’t warn me on Reservations or Naval bases that I was ever transient. I didn’t care if they called me white trash, just the fact it was true. Each friend I make is blandly peeled and razed, quick like band-aids. But the pain and quiet hate never quite fade away.

At five, I began to store beatings and traumas into places I ought not have, under the bed, in my closet and head, in a fleet of terrors and sweats. I wound the wounds in music and math, numbers and letters, the barest potions of magic.

But I love too much.

Too deep. Too vividly. I have no face for him yet still see the flame of the heart of that friend. For short time, it waved the smoke and slowed the bleed. I only recall and will never forget his name. It may be the last one I say.

Each Mare Island morning, I was the pat and patter of mind your manners and minor disasters. I would lay awake late and get up first to get into everything. And I do not mean getting into mere trouble per se. I got into everything possible. And trouble is one lone sin and sinkhole in that infinite hot dessert.

First up. Again. I confirmed everyone was sleeping, so my covert work remain clandestine. I read every book. Little and big, with breasts and beasts and faith in wrath and endless torture with fire for those who are wilful and unwilling.

I peeked down the same stairs that Bloody Mary would have thrown me and there was the thunder below. At bottom lay the cracked remains of mom’s screaming and crying the night before. Broken spines, torn stories and lives and whole worlds flayed open. The bookcases and curses she threw down the stairs at dad the night before were beyond salvage.

That night, the screaming was louder and eternal as all wars are scripted. It was shortly replaced by sirens. Not to save me. They never save you. Never. I’m sorry, but nobody told me and you should know the truth.

The next morning, I creeped downstairs and unlocked the kitchen door leading to the joint courtyard of our row of apartments. We lived in 254 McDougal. You had to get up extra early to fool me or set foot on our back porch before I was up. I was ever anxiously awaiting precious sugar in the yogurt delivered once a week. The blackberry and sour white curd only edible by mixing in the sugary jam. The peach and strawberry and blueberry alternates were a few other favorites.

The milkman had not delivered my stuff yet and yet the sun was high enough for me take a few steps out back onto the grass. 

Halfway across the twenty foot divide of grass, our yard dipped down sharply. The backside of the building behind us was at a slightly lower level than ours because of that.

It was the same hill where dad clutched the loop of silver steel behind my Schwinn seat. He had carefully jogged aside me down the hill the day he got me that first yellow bike. 

The next morning I tried to go down by myself and landed in a heap at the bottom with a handlebar jabbed into my side. I started to throw up, the pain was too sharp. I shook it off and refused to forgive him for failing to warn me of the danger life posed to me.

That last morning, I slipped barefoot across wet clover to the source of the screams and sirens the night before. For the first time, they drowned out ours. The orange that glowed across the street was now shards of glass and licks of black soot up the side of the windows.

At the bottom was glass and plaster, a wet and charred bear, snapped and melted bits of a mobile, wires and plastic parts of the humidifier that malfunctioned.

They say that started the fire in the baby’s room.

My best friend Robert walked up and said hello in the gray of almost morning. I asked if he heard the sirens the last night and if he’d heard about the baby. We didn’t know if it ever lived. His eyes got big when he saw the puddles and mud fused with part of toys and trinkets. I told him to forget about it. Don’t you dare touch the already innocent and abused.

His eyes hardened and he asked why I had to move away.

I did not know. 

I said it was because my dad hates me. 

Every best friend of mine was taken away from me by God and man. So I simply stopped having them to lose.

And their hearts each broke as hard as my own. I knew it. I felt each slice stored in the searing silences.
I tried not to love or feel anything after losing my friend Robert.

It didn’t work.

At first.

Southampton, NY 1984

I saved up for my Saint Tropez and endured the extra weight of the cheaper, heavier frame than most of my friend’s bikes. I couldn’t ride it enough. I have infinite steam. I’ll never die.

I used superior peripheral to pretend to not look as I shot out of Oak avenue, perpendicular to Noyak.

Half of those words were ones my giant friend Wayne wouldn’t want to see on a test. I smoked weed with him because he stayed back twice and was as huge as I was tiny. I was always the one to bloody and bruise in a new town, usually once a year.

Our four years in Southampton were four times longer than each previous home.

I yelled out to Wayne. He had his back facing me, raking leaves of the yard across Noyak from his own. He didn’t want trouble despite being one of the few kids big enough to dole it out. He didn’t want to get his beer money from stealing from the cars and summer homes. I had tested most every home in North Sea and dragged any willing to pilfer with me. We stole boat engines and motorcycles. We danced over the chance of a shotgun welcome with every forced entry. Modern window lock design is now Buck knife resistant. You’re welcome.

The screech of tires told me my dream would now come true. The wheel was spinning and I already read the end credit. I was supposed to die by nineteen. My dad saw it too.

The first time tires tried to judge me wanting, I was back on McDougal street. Deep breaths. The grill of the cadillac was still bouncing to the left of me – close enough to touch – when it finally stopped. My mom saw it from the house and scrambled to grab the baby and come get me.

I kept insisting to my second grade teacher I was fine. When mom ran over to check on me, I thought I was doing just fine in the corner.

I was not. I was rocking back and forth with my face to the wall, freezing and covered in sweat.

Add to that the two times I was knocked out cold at that same tender age and you can partly see how my shrinks find me fascinating.

The hoarse shriek of rubber and steel was behind me and then I heard the bang. The same clang my skull has felt a dozen times I should never have survived.


I never saw Wayne look scared before. I thought he was invincible. He ate Frosted Flakes for dinner with Sweet Emotion as loud as hell and decibels allow.

The panic on his face told me something was very off, so I turned back to look.

My dog Porgy was lying on Noyak in front of my neighbor’s blue Volvo. The killer stood silent, his hat and driver door in hand.

Time moves differently in trauma. It fills the universe with too much hate and love and electric and pink and dry and kin and betrayal from mortals and their torturers and lovers, the same. There pour out dead ones and ohs in the overflow and souls crash and tear, melt and mold in the dirt, next to clasps from cribs and ambulances driving away a mother who left years before. It is more than we were meant to hold and time must fold and weave within itself to make more room for the screams.

I scraped my left hand under the broken yellow back of my Corgi and my right into the puddle of skull and memories of my best friend.

I wasn’t home then. I am back there again. I’m serving time for your sins against me.

I held my dog and watched her eyes flit and fly and beg me for a reason.


Why did you hit me so hard just for following you?

I loved you with everything.

Why did you let me die?


I walked cradling the baby just as she helped hold me sane for six years of abuse.

When her eye caught mine, I looked away from her blood and brain in shame. If anyone, she didn’t deserve the universe and its lethal apathy.

I trudged passed Oak and ground through Bay, sleepwalking Noyak to the swarm of Locust.

Every car idled and driver staid silent. Every day-drinker from Hogan’s bar weaved and watched me cry like a girl, shirt drenched with an impossible flood of blood from the truest one I’d met, ever loyal and loving.

After the minutes and years it took me to walk three blocks, I dug my knees into the garden in front of Aunt Betty’s window and set Porgy in the grass one last time. Her lone eye was circling slower now. Her warm frame was cooling and all softness fading from us.

I’m still there. She is buried and almost at rest now.

I still refuse to let anyone else touch the shovel.

Devil’s Advocate

Sunday, May 28th, 2017 – 1:46 am

And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? – (Matt. 27:46)

I scanned the small herd of Southampton Methodists for a hint of connection or substance to the God they sang about. I remained fully unpersuaded.

Toward the front sat my fat middle school gym teacher. His glare proved he still spotted me these years later and the furrowed brow showed memory of my misdeeds. They were manifold and many, of course, but in particular included helping trash the gym over summer break. The janitor had left the front door of the school wide open as we were driving by one afternoon on our bikes. We never considered resisting the temptation to enter uninvited and take possession. We sprinted into vandal mode with the efficiency and timing of soldiers. We were in and out of the school in minutes. We did vile things to that coach’s office and desk.

Ever the people watcher and student, it took me a few minutes in church that Sunday to decide that nobody of note had spark or proof of life. None could even mildly interest me with their good news. I struggled to tune out the hymns and nausea from the beer and whiskey of the night before.

A month before that, my father had leaned in with ultimatums. He offered to send me to military school, a psychiatrist or kill me. I suggested a fourth option of church. My older brother Paul was pulling it off for real and I could fake anything.

In between lines of Wesley and the last of the coke, I heaved and weaved in my stink and pew. With the dismissal, it was like I was born again and I was the first to hit the door. I lit my cigarette and walked across the street into the North End Cemetery. I knew it well as I strolled it with no sound mind or sight on many a lost New York night.

More comfortable with bones and headstones, I pulled out the tab of acid I bought from a stranger behind the museum and I stuck it on my tongue.

I meandered back to familiar sight of dad’s crossed arms and furrowed brows.

He asked why I walked to the cemetery. I said I was bored. He told me it was time to go. I said I decided to walk home.

I figured it would give plenty of time to gauge the strength of the LSD and enjoy it a bit before I got back home and to deal anew with dad’s bullshit.

It was a four mile stretch fit for a hurricane and fifteen year old.

Hours or maybe years later, I climbed up near infinite steps to my house with seizing calves and steeped in salty regret.

I walked in on a mother not unlike many of my own. She sat silently at something akin to a sewing machine, the only soul showing in an almost living room.

She asked how was my walk.

I told her it was fine, but she could see I was lying. I was drenched and scared, pulling punches on lies to throw out a few tells.

Keep an eye on me.

I layed down on the couch next to her and tried closing my eyes, but I kept feeling soft thumps on my chest and back that were out of sync with my racing heart. Invisible checks and balances to my hubris and self destruction.

I looked up to a mother figure hoisting a white collared shirt of her blue collared husband. She lifted it high for a view of her sewing handiwork. Just outside the window in front of her bloomed the biggest and bluest rhododendrons.

Then I opened another set of eyes.

Diving and weaving around the room at breakneck speeds were several small blurs, more marked by absence in our reality than by their presence. They were faster than bats in speed, able to stop in midair. They were impossible to look directly upon. Once my eyes focused where they floated, the swooping shadows would shift afresh from sight.

Each time one hovered nearby, I would watch it slam into my chest and fly back out of me.

Mind the expanding.

Some weeks before this, my dad and I had watched the Exorcist together.

My brother Paul did not like it. I insisted I loved it and that the book was even better. I ran upstairs to my colored pencils and within minutes had hung over my headboard a strikingly accurate version of Regan possessed. Inspired. Almost impossibly accurate from mere memory. I taped it just below my poster of the grim reaper and the number six six six splayed in gothic font.

That night, I half awoke to black clouds hovering above my bed. They asked if they could enter into me and I agreed.

Family said I really changed after that. My father told me years later that was around the time he realized someone would die soon if we stayed on Long Island. He knew we had to leave before my self destruction claimed his life or my own.

That acid washed Sunday, mom stared for a moment at my twitching and tossing and asked what was wrong.

I closed my eyes again and said “it’s nothing, I’m fine.”

A year later, I told the Lord that if He was real, I was sorry for ruining my life. That morning, I had heard a voice say my father had killed before and I shared the same fixed fate.

When I prayed, an Ocala hotel room that I thought was silent suddenly emptied with a rushing sound like a swarm of bees. It exposed a peace and quiet I’d not felt or heard for years.

My heart was filled for the first time with love and forgiveness. I prayed God would forgive my father for all he had done. The times he beat me bloody. The time he strangled me unconscious while screaming he was going to kill me.

My heart felt a grace and peace unlike anything I’d ever known.

A week after that prayer, I utterly ignored my dad’s insistences to not get baptised at a pentecostal church in Port Charlotte. When I got home, I cornered him on the couch and told him he needed to “pray the sinner’s prayer, whatever the hell that is. I don’t know, but Paul will lead you.”

Dad started to stand, but hovered in an almost seated position a few seconds before collapsing again into the sofa. Paul prayed with him. He told us months later that he was about to tell us to go to hell when he felt an invisible hand on his shoulder forcing him to sit back down.

Two years later, I was lying on my parent’s couch in their Fairview, Oregon living room well after midnight. I had wept for hours, asking the spirit of the Lord why He had left me.

I had been studying the Bible voraciously for years, researching and praying many hours a day, parsing Greek and Hebrew. We left our first Portland church for not being evangelical enough for us. The pastor refused to let me start a door to door ministry or homeless ministry. We started attending another charismatic church in Portland where I started both those ministries.

That night, I had a dream. God had shoved two burning torches into my hands and told me to follow a path before me. As I followed it, others in the dark fringe turned to see my flames. But everything suddenly faded to black.

I awoke to my first ever seizure. I was eighteen. My head was rapidly shaking up and down. I reached up and grabbed the sides of my head to stop it from convulsing.

I quit drinking a year and a half ago. I was not gracious about it. I sat on my uncle’s Florida couch and informed God. He broke His decades of silence to tell me three things.

He reminded me of my dream at eighteen. He told me I would burn brighter than ever before, but my race would be cut short.

He reminded me of a verse in Luke that “the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.” He warned me to quickly reach out to as many people as possible.

Then I saw an image of old man walking with a small group of women. They were helping him finish write his books. In the vision, I was hunched over and walking with a cane.

Six months later, a friend at my daughter’s wedding asked why my hands were shaking.

With fear and trembling, I looked away and said “it’s nothing, I’m fine.”

Thicker Than Waters

Wednesday, May 17th 2017 – 3:54 am

And ofttimes it hath cast him into the fire, and into the waters, to destroy him: but if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us. – Mark 9:22

“Time Tyrant”

May 17, 2017 – Oregon City, Oregon

Here I am again, just before four a.m. and my legs wobble and bend like streams in an errant fountain. I pour laundry sink water from a blackened pot or two and my tremor turns on real bad to the last drop. Towering, brooking the babble from my maker of coffee or the just right pitch of a creek or crick will spin me and my seizures into worsening.

Another frustrating effect of my conversion disorder is that I no longer need food or sleep.

This is a lie of course.

The power of men to bend laws and logic lies here as well. We can do more than believe in our lies. We make them true. We are magic.

I might no longer stay awake for five days at a time like when I got off oxy and morphine and fentanyl and methadone and dilaudid and codeine and percocet and vicodin and again and again and again and thank god the good guys gave me the safe stuff. Thank government for you, gods of the right.

Now I split into shifts of twenty one and under, and up and at ’em again with the final three or four hours, I drag your love for the count. Staying still more than an eighth of my days feels wasteful and remiss. My brain is friendly foe again, snuffing the candle out from the inside. How can I survive in time?

Magic cost and world building price.

“Diver Down”

August 15, 1985 – Ocala, Florida

I woke to a drum beat and a pain in the neck. I was wakesleeping again and a fierce foe friend assured me it was the end. Let go. Let’s go. Let. Go.


No, it’s okay. You broke your neck and are paralyzed. Don’t fight it. Go back to sleep. This is your last day. Go in peace.

No! No! No! No! No! No! Fight it! Get up! Get up! Get up! Get up! Get up! Get u

I woke up for air and pushed away the concrete pillow and floated up to a survival position. I puked chlorine water and my bloody face broke the skin of the deep end. My little brother was jumping up and down and screaming, his eyes red and swollen. That didn’t make sense. I thought I was only a few seconds gone. He should not have had time to cry that long. What’s happening. What happened.

What who where am I.

I dove in the deep end of the pool at our Holiday Inn and upon face to water, I blacked out again, like too many times since.

Prescott thought I had died and said I was laying at the pool bottom for at least a full minute. Right. What do kids know.

Blood ran down the deep gash in my forehead, nose and chin.

I heard his scream again as I fell in a final time. Then I swam over to grab the ladder and I pulled myself up and out.

“I had to rinse the blood off my face. Calm down.”


October 30th, 1993 – Oregon coast

He said don’t run away. He ran anyway. He said stay in the van. He said stay in the fucking van. He ran. He didn’t do what he fucking told him. He fucking told him. He told him, didn’t he. Didn’t he tell him. Didn’t he. He said what was coming next. He told him what would happen if he ran. He ran anyway. He’s fucking sick of this. No more.

We spotted Prescott running up the logging road away from our failed morning hunt. Dad gunned the van and mom screamed. I never make a sound or flinch. That’s a thing with me. But I can slow down time. You ought to see it. And I knew dad was not trying to run Prescott over, just catch up with him. He did and then slammed the brakes and crunching gravel was shortly replaced with a gravelier dad screaming get in the van.

As my brother climbed back in, dad surprised everyone by pulling out his belt. Every eye widened this time as the youngest never got that.

He was only even wandering and running away on our hunting trip because he could not be trusted at home with just mom.

My brother had been awake for a long time. Longer than even me. For over two weeks. He passed from daily hallucinations to severe psychotic breaks and finally OHSU restraints. For almost a month.

A pure white wolf would appear in every mirror and pane. It’s name was Mammon, neither good nor evil. It all depends on how you use it.

Prescott attacked confused nurses several times and they were forced to increase security restraints. They were inexplicably undone twice. Mammon did it. It can move men and mountains, beside bands or buckles.

Prescott was too strained to leave at home, but too sane to escape punishment for running.

The final notch in dad’s buckle erred into the van. The four metal prongs took Prescott full across the face and he screamed. I was used to that and far worse. But this was his first. Dad usually kept all that from baby brother. Only the big boys got that. For decades. But not him. Not Prescott.

He was nineteen.

He kicked dad in the stomach and ran out of the van and back up to the cul de sac in front of us. I sprinted after him.

I was always the fastest kid on the block, way back when I had legs. I caught up and simply tackled my sibling, lowering us gently into soft turf of rock and dirt. We were literally on the edge of the second Oregon cliff to almost claim me.

When Prescott tried to break free from my grip and run again to the cliff, he screamed he wanted to die. He said Jesus was calling him and was ready to go to heaven. I wasn’t sure we were up high enough to guarantee he wouldn’t survive. He might outlive the fall, unable to feel his legs. A little like mine.

I tackled him a last time and said if he tried to jump once more, I would knock him the fuck out.

He laughed it off and tried to pull away. Just until he saw my hand going up. He recognized my fist. A decade before and for months on out, I had punched him more times than men try to make count.

I promised my brother I had knocked people out before and he could either walk back to the van or be dragged.

His demon slowed just enough to stare into my eyes, begging for a sign of bluff. It was not there. It never was. I have never made an idle threat. I can’t. That part of me is broken. When I talk about what I will do to your throat, it will be in the past tense. I promise you and swear to Jesus above.

Do you dare doubt me?

We drove in silence for twenty minutes, out of the Oregon forest and a hunting trip ruined. The first pay phone crested our path, tied to a gas station divorced from regular passing of time. The fifties called and wanted their nostalgia back.

I dialed Amy to check in. Austin was just five days over a year. Big sister was almost two and a half. I just wanted to tell my wife we were almost out of the woods.

I hung up the pay phone and slowly walked toward the driver side door.

I told my dad to get out of the van.

My mom jumped out after him.

It’s always go time.

The adrenaline was easily reignited and accelerated and the tension still weighed every face from the welts and screams of just a few minutes before.

But dad’s angry glare rushed away with all pink in his cheeks when I shared the news Amy had just given me over the phone.

“Your mom just died,” I told him.

He froze and wavered, feet and soul.

Mom asked if he was going to be alright. His look dropped and flopped from gutted to sad and lost and back again. The fight was up and long gone. We didn’t plan ahead or know what to do anymore.

I took a short step forward and asked my father if I could give him a hug.

He let me.

Static Enemy In Me

Sunday, May 14th, 2017 – 3:43 am

“Static Enemy In Me”

The first clouds moved too fast then. Still still, steal me when I’m almost awake. The blood on my cheeks bake and bounce in your nameless arms. I ran too fast and lost hot, cold and all hold on harm.

Again and again, I played hit and ran side wars on sidewalks that slowed us down and stalked me cold. Blurry children laugh ever after, once upon a tie score, my scars and sleep. I paid and prayed for saving grace, a higher class to kiss the ground and bow less deep.

I chased the fraught and fray further than I ought during day. The highs and lows loved to lay waste to indy tweens. Buzzed and burned by hands my age before most were even weaned.

Then They arrive.

Just on time. Both pulled me each night. Commanding new numbs with nowhere to stand or see, I walk past last lagging light, to twins and needles. No one to stab but me. From then on, we promised to change me for the bedder.

We killed time and sins in foreign lands. In reserves we walked, those pocked and locked by men much more lost to law, a lot like me. White is less right under the brightest lights of half hidden history. I can never run again after today. I was told to sleep and wait while pins needlessly saved us.

Invisible fans faithfully fanned such fires. They still spill red and white and pit black and blue. Just another brick corner to keep their heads down. Dig and gouge and dream and pray and feel and flee and fight and freeze, deep in eyes with fingers, search and play. I finally awoke you two too, to you true awash in blood and loss and songs of solar sleep, my final fate for future days to seize, c’est la vie and say Lovey.

Back there, back where I keep dying to leave Their there, they’re shaking foundations and bricking the air with Their airs and heirs and errors like last doors leading the hells out of there. I reason with Them now and then, when They can hear a friend forging fragile truce. Few days left, runned twain, terrored and mundane. Almost standing on my own, I’ll bow out soon, boasting such breadth by a boy with shattered feet of clay.