Everything You Ever Wanted: Broken
We all came here for the same things. We fumble down laminated menus that’re splotchy with sexual fluids. Cum drips, and leaves streaks. The waitress leans in and tells us she’s wet like she really wants us to know about the weather outside.
We came here because we were hungry. Thirsty. Because we had needs we were looking to have filled. Yeah, warm empty slots of want that we needed stuffed full of knowledge and sweet sticky honey.
She goes down on me like I’m the last cigarette in the package. She savours my taste and exhales me around the room. She chokes and coughs, demurely, like a lady. Like a lady who lives on her knees.
I went out looking for something. I wanted to strike sparks. I wanted to drown in my own deliciousness, my own terrible ideas.
The couple next door make love like spiders. They’re hideous little monsters full of poison and lackadaisical drives. They spend most of their days hiding in the dark, licking and petting at each other.
I just wanted to find myself. To free myself.
To go fuck myself.
Not Overtly Friendly; Just Familiar
Get your halloween masks on: we’re going hunting.
I’ve taped over my eyeholes so they’ll never see me coming. I’ve filed the safeties off our handguns so they’ll go off like fireworks at a moment’s notice.
This moment is your only notice: Let’s go!
I’m masquerading as a Catholic School Girl today. You think I don’t notice you trying to look up my skirt, but what’d you think I put it on for? I’m daring you put your eyes on the thin cotton of my underpants. Maybe I’m something you can imagine. Maybe I’m something more.
More or less.
Pull on your mask and socks: we’re going out hunting for hipsters and sluts tonight. We’re gonna get Laid Men like mobsters. We’re gonna go swimming in cement shoes, hanging with lobsters. We’re gonna spell things in ALLCAPS and forget each other’s names, just in case the police corner us for questions.
I got a girlfriend or two; she blows me like smoke rings and rings me like a bell when it’s time to eat. Pussy cats prowl past our window at night, hunting for rats and other nocturnal snacks.
You think you’d forgotten me, but I’m still right behind you. I’m catching up fast and coming on strong.
Not overly-familiar; just friendly.
Of Course You’re Welcome
She’s an atomic bomb.
Yeah, she blow me like an atomic bomb - she sends me up into the stratosphere, tripping on mushroom clouds as tall as the sky.
She kisses me long and hard, in reverse. It’s like she’s shoving my own saliva back onto my tongue. I taste myself in her mouth, and I taste scared. She smiles, and spits a bit of me out on the road, where I sizzle, like bacon.
Look at her: cigarette on her lips.
Look at her: choking on smoke and smiling.
I swear, that girl could laugh through a faceful of just about anything.
She languid, laughing, lying night and day in my bed and over my phone. You know her ring-tone; she’s a telephonic siren, a saviour of the other side. She’s somebody who knows. She’s been there. She’s come back. She’s holding your hand. She’s slitting your throat.
Come on, don’t leave me alone. Sit with me. Tell me something. Let me talk over top of you until you submit to my story. Let my narrative lead you right up to the slaughterhouse so when you get to go down your knees, you’re comfortable looking up, and seeing me, and saying,
Find It Closer To You
I’m holding my breath until the end of the world.
Do you know when that is?
Read me, rate me, rape me, review me.
Just don’t ignore me. Don’t leave me to fester and rot. Don’t leave me to plot my schemes, like revenge or a mystery novel.
She is overtly sexual. She tries to hide it, but she doesn’t try very hard. She likes me to be hard, which is to say, overly difficult. I mismanage my words, so she gets to misunderstand me. Little Miss Indelible Marker.
Yeah, the world is ending. Star by star flickers out. I’m out collecting smiles from porn-stars, trying to discover the taste of true love before we all go out, into the dark. I want to peel something open and devour it. Maybe something like you.
Somebody in the audience starts to quiver and twitch. A moan builds up like it’s had a lifetime to stew in there and now it just wants out.
Now you just want out.
Now you just want…
All The Way Around
She reflects on me like I’m a shattered mirror in the back alley, coated in roadway grime and the filth of the city. She looks into me like she’s looking down a long dark tunnel, and she’s hoping to see herself at the other end.
She’s a compromise. I wanted everything and deserved nothing, and she’s what I wound up with. She’s a punishment. She’s the luckiest I’ve ever been.
I thinks she’s maybe a writer, or some sort of artist anyway. I know she likes to be naked, and she hates religion. She drinks milk and honey for breakfast, like she’s some sort of enormous hard-bodied insect. Yeah, she’s got acid dripping out of her mouth. When she sees me.
She melts me down, and removes my impurities. I feel my teeth start to rattle, and my stray thoughts start to smoke and combust.
Yeah, she sees me. She sees me.
But only while I’m watching her.
Why Don’t You Why Don’t You Why Don’t You Just Lay Down Here For A Second
A red sky at night, means that they next day will be pleasant.
A purple sky with bright green spots that sparkle and twirl, means that the drugs have kicked in, and it’s time to go fall in love, or commit similar crimes.
Yeah, it was a crime, when you fell for me. You
could’ve should’ve been charged with attempted suicide, when you got went down with me. Your eyes were bigger than your heart, when you set me as your goal.
“There’s too much of him to really love effectively, and besides, it all tastes the same after a while.”
making eating out with these girls who leave me with pop-rocks caked in between my teeth. They talk like raves make music. They don’t go out and dance; they just stay up late, playing on their computers. They’re into sex and cartoons and destroying the world.
When I strive for independence, she schools me like fishes. When I give her doubts, she feeds me suspicious. When I take her with force, it’s never against her wishes. If I’m starting to drool, it’s ‘cause she’s delicious.
I wish I could make up my mind. But fuck it; if we can’t decide on something, we’ll just toss the menu across the floor and transform into waitress-consuming vampires.
That oughta do, for a little while.
Far From Bulletproof
I lean into her life. I feel all dirty and imperfect. I am far from invulnerable. Far from bulletproof.
What I am, is on fire in the rain. What I am is a quiet sort of crush. A quiet crushing, a smothering, a smouldering. Like a fire that just won’t go out. A flame that can’t manage to break free.
I dip and dive. I feel like crap and I fight like I’ve got something to lose.
I’m stealing electricity from the city across the street, running black electrical cables cut into a power-box, into my little cardboard mansion. We’re living down by the river now, eating rats and the cancer-ridden fish that swim in the industrialized waters.
I’m a lost legend, living like this. I’m a Cardboard King, an unplugged guru of the modern age. I’m something ultimately forgettable, like all that advice you didn’t ask for.
Fuck it. Sometimes I think I break into your home at night just so I can convince you ignore me. I put my whispers in your ear, chanting over and over again, “stay away stay away I need you so fucking bad stay away from me forever.”
And on and on and on like that.
Ash In The Breeze
Outside, as the sun starts to set over the sea, I hear a crow call out three times, signifying something important that’s happening just out of sight. You know, like super-cool. “Out of sight, baby.”
I’m coming to you naked like the truth should be. My pants on fire and my shirts are worn down to skeletal stitching. Thin cross-work lines of thread making me look like I’m covered in hairsbreadth scars.
Yeah, I’m scarred. Scarred and scared. I’m not afraid to admit that, though. I don’t think you can damage me. Even with your hand so deep within my heart.
Outside, there’s movie stars wasting time on my park bench, waiting for their scenes to start. Pert little girls as pretty as movie stars, smoking cigarettes like a Freudian wet-dream. Tall taut men with exactly three millimeters of facial-stubble and photogenic genitalia. I pay them no mind, and lend them nothing of matter.
You couldn’t even afford one of my smiles, if it were presented to you as some sort of an offer. A bit of me in trade for a bite of you? Would you be amenable to a deal like that? Could you consider me in trade for you, for just a moment or two?
She thinks me over like a cigarette burning up.
Hot on the lips and ash in the breeze.
I light a smoke and affix her with my best fuck-you stare-down.
All my stories take place in these places. A truck-stop somewhere up North. A candy store down in the city, or the deep and shadowy alley that lurks behind it. That hotel room where I did those drugs. That city I always think of when I look at those pictures.
You’ve been there. You’ve never been anywhere like there. You know me while I remain a stranger. You step into my clothes and you look around my apartment. You drink from my glass and you fuck my women. You swallow all the poison and the crushed glass I left around for just such an occasion.
I try to keep my points blunt.
The irony isn’t lost on you.
Nothing’s ever lost on you.
So we’re out driving in that rusted out old piece of shit you call an automobile. We’re listening to mix-tapes, and watching the myth of the Modern North American dream go spiralling past outside the window. Prairies and mountains and stale coffee and deep forests nobody’s ever really lived in, not even the old people, back before.
A crow flies overhead, calling out like we’re approaching the end of the world. We snack compulsively, and eventually get rather intimate. We express things. You learn about that dream I had that one time that I don’t really like to talk about.
You put your foot down. We start to move.
Unceremoniously, they found us buried in our own chasis. We drove ourselves to death and obscurity, out beyond the deserts and the badlands, where nobody’s supposed to go. They found us, but they could never, ever understand us.
And that was what was so sad about them.
Sit Still, Skull Boy
There goes Skull Boy.
Look at him, he’s so cool and smart and he knows just what he’s doing.
He’s got a fresh white shirt and a crisp black tie, and where his neck and head should be there’s a few links of spine and a big naked skull.
He smiles, and heads out the face the world.
We’re living the post-apocalypse. The springtime is full of butterflies that look like the mushroom clouds of atomic bomb blasts going off, as they flap their little wings. We’re living in a future with a sky that’s beautifully black all hours of the day.
He looks up and he smiles at the hole in the sky, where the sun used to be. His eye sockets gaze into the absence, probing like you might imagine that you could hold the hand of some long-departed lover.
Skull Boy, he don’t sleep. He just sits all quiet, on park benches, feeding chicken meat to the pigeons.
Skull Boy, he don’t eat. He just watches all the living people walking past him in the day, and he hungers for something, but he doesn’t know what.
You’re living your life, and he’s just watching time go by.
Skull Boy, he likes to smile at the world.
But most people don’t smile back.
The Height Of Her
We go out for a walk,
On the edge of my UFO.
She’s so pretty, in her skirt and her socks. We stand on an edge, and we look into the depths of the city. We’re counting concrete cracks, from where we’re standing. We’re looking at the way the city fades into shadows and oblivion.
I want get above it all.
I want to climb.
She catches my breath, in a bottle. Stops it up with a cork of melted wax. She saves my words for me, so she can let them go later, like lightning bugs into a storm. She records me on empty air, and traps me in sticky little promises that can’t be undone.
I want to get
High on her.
Her scent, the chemical trail of her skin. She drags me through graveyards and makes me fight all her ghosts and skeletons. Those zombies she dated. That chunk of black gravestone she fell in love with. I skin my knuckles on the dead, and come out a vicious victor.
She’s so hot,
She burns me where I stand.
Fragments of a Greater Darkness
She looks into the camera and strips off all her illusions.
She gives up on not being lied to. She gives up on not being deceived. She surrenders her need to be understood, and her desire to consume something meaningful.
She looks into the camera, and she smiles a toothless grin of bloody razorblades and fragments of a greater darkness.
I’m stationed in the alley out behind her house. I perch up on the telephone wires like a big tall bird in a long dirty overcoat. I watch her when she’s in the shower. I watch her when she’s reading online. She considers my presence/persistence evidence of some larger truth.
She’s not right. Not this time.
I’m an angel set to automatic. I am the autonomic response of the lifeblood of the universe. I am what happens when you just let things happen, and you stop worrying about consequences.
Stop at a roadside diner for cheap coffee and overpriced cigarettes. Turn your teeth yellow-brown and your heart into a shit-stain of abandonment.
Keep your lover locked in the trunk of the car. I can still hear her banging on the metal frame in there.
Just drive and drive and drive, until there’s nothing left but road and wheels twisted by the grooves in the pavement.
I offered you a bit of truth, just to see you choke it down.
The Man Who Could Fly But Probably Shouldn’t’ve
By HLH Pattison
Available now to finer readers everywhere!
You Can See Me If You Stare Hard
I close my eyes and imagine that I’m dreaming of some perfect fragment of a ultra-world; you know, some place with cities in the clouds and brave soldiers striking back the forces of chaos.
I wake up amongst garbage and rubble. Heaps of forgotten lives. Abandoned lovers. Treasure turned to trash.
Up above, a squadron of geese are soaring overhead like angry bombers looking to reduce to the city to a smear of goose-poop. Good. I’ve looked into the heart of this place, and it’ll get what’s coming to it.
In bed, I’m dancing with this girl who’s exploding into orgasms and pixels. She comes like fireworks in a closed fist. Her eyes go wide and her mouth makes a Milo Manara O, and then she makes the music match her motion. She makes the beat follow her.
I’d follow her, into the abyss. Into darkness and unknowing.
Though around here, that’s my every-day.
Flipping through channels, looking for something to watch, or something to be. A new identity, or some clever character I transform myself into.
There’s a gang of Psychic Kung Fu teenagers on Channel One. I don’t know how they got their powers, but they’re being trained by a wise old Chinese guy, who’s teaching them to focus their deadly powers with Zen lessons and physical combat.
They wander around the bad parts of town at night, spray-painting their names as graffiti-tags, scoring drugs, and generally just being bad-asses.
Over on Channel Two there’s one of those franchises about revenge. A guy and his girl were killed, just so a mob-boss could raise the guy from the dead as a sort of undead avenger. Naturally, it all goes wrong. The man who chooses vengeance can have it, so long as he can take the burning.
Yeah, he burns, every step he takes out of the grave. But if he ignores the pain, he can kill every one of those fuckers who took his life from him.
My remote is broken, as are my fingers and my eyes.
I don’t want to watch these shows. I want to write them. I want to find the lead actors and smash them in their all-too handsome faces. I want to rearrange the plots until they’re just meaningless frames of sexy people sashaying across the screen.
On Channel Three, my biography is playing in slow-motion. Three days later, and maybe I’ll be finished typing this post. Maybe I’ll have somewhere to go. Maybe I’ll have done something impressive.
Maybe this is all there is.