Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Forrest Dwelling Bearskin Capped Eastern European Collaborationists

I just love everything there is about my delightful little neighborhood…but I think the guy next door is a Nazi war criminal. The evidence, which I’m sure you’ll find convincing, is as follows.

1) Resilient European Tendencies: This man and his wife have a way of sitting about and enjoying the day which I find particularly alarming. There’s something about their overly worn lawn furniture, wine grape trellis and meticulously ironed clothing that just doesn’t seem to lend itself to normal suburban living. They smile to much, and I think I remember her arm resting on his while they spoke. Believe me, I’ll be looking into these things.

2) Longevity: These people seem very old and yet remarkably healthy, and not in that patriotic old-people-propped-up-on-pharmaceuticals sort of way either. People with clear consciences enjoy their elderly years, but so do those without a conscience. And part of the reason there’s so many strudel shops in French Guyana is that this same agedness preys on our capacity to seek, and therefore grant, redemption through personal enlightenment. Which in turn, of course, provides the perfect camouflage for a sick death camp butcher.

3) Mailbox Lettering: There are far to many Cs, Js and double vowels in their name that send normal tongues somersaulting during pleasantries. Now if the newly immigrated simply want to save a few Rubles or Kopeks or whatever at Home Depot by purchasing decal lettering from the bargain bin that’s one thing, but all these consonants are bound to remind a civilized person of that funny a/u/e sound Europeans make when they’re mispronouncing Treblinka or Birkeneau.

Anyway, I’m not saying we should string these two up or anything, but if I see any lederhosen on the clothes line I’m rushin’ the place with granddaddy’s Confederate sword, that’s all.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Several blocks away in a shuttered cape there lives a nice plump and friendly cat who enjoys sitting on his street corner. As neighbors stroll, which some do while others hurry off to barter crescent wrench sets containing missing 10mm counterparts for moth eaten Indian Motorcycle sew-on patches, the cat watches on. Slower travelers are approached for a pet, and many who notice the lovely feline’s coat and kind demeanor decide that he would make a fine companion. Removing his collar they take him back to their dwellings, whatever that may mean. When struck by the notion the cat returns home unfazed, and no party shows any wear and tear from the process but the tattered Missing Cat signs which are repeatedly hung. When I pass the corner with that missing cat I note his absence sometimes with the same sort of attention I might pay to pinto beans on sale two for a dollar. Stroking his fur right where he belongs I still think of him as missing.


In the fashion of traditional Southern cities this one also was designed to have alleys running between the lots with houses that sail neatly pointed through manicured lawns. These back avenues offer a secondary view of the workings which power the neighborhood. There, a crying child may be explained the next morning by a new white sofa with a large chocolate milk stain on it left out for trash. Beer bottles whisper tales of unseen homeless and local teenagers, trash that mingles in a temporarily ominous way. Kitchen smells and Tungsten shadows sneak over the sandworn brick in early evening as bougainvillea toss their violet capes like matadors braving garage doors.
Diagonally against the sky a rare temperate oak stands with sturdy arm quietly braced against muted watermark pastels. And from that gesticulation comes swooping death between in-law apartments to tiny peeping birds bent toward seed and insect beside a gurgling fountain.

I arrive home from work to find my neighbor shouting into his cell phone and wonder if someone somewhere is listening to his counterpart on her patio replete with hawk and tiger cat and bougainvillea conquistadors.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


After the nose picking there would always be a wordlessness, just as she had once seen my confidence round the corner in an argument.
With those faults we were pleased to lie in bed late into the night whispering and peering out the wintry headboard window sipping our sleeping hours away.
In Florida you miss the cold as it rattles around lead painted window frames to kiss a backside edge of glass with fog. And the way your girl’s feet come to you in sleep for warmth.