Squeezing The Life From The Object Of My Lust
I had a man arrested for choke-holding a woman against a fence and felt pretty good about it. I wonder what it really means to do good works, as two Christian Evangelists described it when I told them the story, and if it's possible to separate the self-satisfaction accrued from helping others from the act of performing a service for them. I think to myself once again that there is a careful balance to everything and that most of the time we're all just treading water towards a middle ground. Then the lid falls off the container of garlic powder in my hand and forms a small but potent pyramid of death on top of my overpriced slice of bad pizza, all but squeezing the life from the object of my lust.

The Thing I Keep Telling Myself That I Will Not Do But That I Cannot Seem To Completely Keep Myself From Doing
I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear, I will not live in fear.

Failing To Harness Mediocrity As A Creative Endeavor By Poorly Mimicking A Failed Attempt At Harnessing Mediocrity As A Creative Endeavor
I bought a book of poems by a single author from a small publisher via their website and sat down on my floor a week after it showed up in my mailbox and read it, but was not very impressed. I got up and walked to the corner store to buy cigarettes and started typing an inspired text message to myself as I went because I didn't have paper or anything to write with, but couldn't finish my train of thought before I got there. After I had bought what I had gone to buy I could not reclaim the original idea I had been intent on driving towards, so that my body of writing was instead turned into a not very long but long enough build up to a hopelessly lackluster conclusion devoid of any purpose, which I then edited several times.

I am at the grocery store with my father. We have a package of fettuccine pasta, a tub of basil pesto, and a bottle of reasonably priced red wine when he asks me if there is anything else that I need. I tell him no, because you can't buy intuitive solutions for pain at a grocery store, and because I can honestly say that I've never seen a 10 oz. cardstock box with a three color machine printed label that says Clever Ways To Elude Important Questions That You Are Afraid Of Answering By Instead Addressing The Perceived Underlying Structures Behind Their Asking ever lining the shelves next to bandages, pre-inflated balloons made of reflective metallic plastic, or generic greeting cards posturing as unique and intimate moments to stand in place of your ability to succinctly and accurately inform someone of your feelings.

Failing At The Same Thing The Entirety Of Humanity Has Also Failed At
I am trying very hard not to bleed on your couch, but all of my efforts really don’t do any good, and I am wildly unsuccessful. This makes a lot of sense to me, and I don’t get too bent out of shape about it when I consider that as far as I know no one has ever been able to just up and keep themselves from bleeding (which pretty well explains why a lot of people who were once alive are now dead,) and who can honestly feel too discouraged knowing that they have merely failed at the same thing the entirety of humanity has also failed at for essentially (and quite literally, really) the entirety of humanity itself.

Jamie, Alex, Alex, and Jesse
I fall backwards from a sitting position off of a railing and on to my back, into a parking lot and also the rain. I pretend that I am in a chair with no seat and no legs that is anchored into a shallow mud made of asphalt and goose shit and sand and straw, and because it is easier now not to move, I decide to try to see the entirety of the grey in the sky at one time, but water keeps falling into each one of my eyes and I cannot stop blinking. This is fine, I guess, because who can ever see the whole of anything really? We drive to another city and play a show in a barn and stay there after everyone else has left or gone to bed, getting very drunk and smoking cigarettes and telling stories. There is an arm, and there are two legs, but there is never a full body.  

The World is Raining Funny
It’s great that every funny thing that is currently happening in the world is happening to the two of you, together next to one another inside of an airplane. It’s just a little strange is all, like the weird place in someone’s city right now where everything to their left is being rained on, and everything to their right is not. The world is raining funny on you two, and no matter how many times we hit you repeatedly in your vapid faces, none of us can seem to find the hope that’s been buried in your flesh.  

No Pledge
Before we became bitter and jaded and could still maintain and express simple emotions, we would carry these songs right on our backs for days and weeks and months at a time, never conscious of their weight in a world where politics and theories and cultural analytics destroyed the ease of appreciating a long drawn out narrative about pain. Now we sit smoking at tables in kitchens, in chairs on porches, and in fake leather or cloth seats in cars, remembering those words with vague feelings of loss, like we’ll never be able to live them the same way again. And yet, no pledge can ever not be undone, and all the time you’ve spent living can never change the hope to perhaps live more truly again; for yourself, for everyone that is or has been, or that could ever be.

All I Can Smell is the Mass of Your Hair Stuffed in My Face
All I can smell is the mass of your hair stuffed in my face. At first I’m sort of into it, like a bad action movie or dancing again to some band I loved in high school, drunk and shouting the words to all the songs ten years later across hardwood floors in someone else’s living room on New Years Eve. But then I notice the quality of the smell, how it’s like breathing in the exiting air from the back of a hair dryer, or waking up in a room full of smoke with that awful dry feeling in the back of your throat that you just can’t manage to wash away. Panicked, I step into the cold air, sweating in long sleeves, and let myself fall forward into the ice and mud and grass, the skeletons of small animals the cats have killed, and all the cigarette butts and piss stains from the night as is and all of the other nights before it. It is a beautiful thing to be alive, and I am grateful to be able to feel all of the pain in my body, but the world is truly an overwhelming place, and I am absolutely fucking terrified to be a part of it.

Building An Icon For All Of The Qualities We Desire
We choose a thing and place upon it serious intentions of affection and try very hard to love it, but the thing just sits there, not moving or speaking or doing anything romantic like having a picnic in a beautiful park on a beautiful day. We try to think of this thing as an icon for all of the qualities we desire, even painting it with attractive features and clothing it in the latest styles. This works in a way, except that the thing begins to become excessively self conscious from our limitless expectations of everything it should be, eventually leaving us to move in with an alcoholic musician incapable of respecting anything but their own bad dreams.

Reflecting The Light Of The World Upon The Horror That We’ve Become
You said that I could not imagine how much pain is in your body, so I sat down and put my elbows on the table and my chin in my hands and squinched my eyes up tight until there was nothing but the void of everything I’ve ever lived gaping right in front of me. I began to add up each cut, scrape, bruise, gash, puncture and broken hearted feeling I’d ever felt and woke fully clothed a week later beside a battered version of my body. I grabbed my second self with both of my hands and brought him to a sitting position level with yours. You each locked eyes with the other and began to howl in perfect harmony until my ears were sticky with blood and there was no more sound at all. This is the way that it’s always been with us; you with your never ending sob stories, and me, reflecting the light of the world upon the horror that we’ve become.

Raiders of the Lost Shut the Fuck Up
I have been keeping your bed warm for you since September because it seemed like the right thing to do. I thought that if someone was occupying the space in the world you had left behind that it would keep you safe in the world that you went to, and when you came back unscathed I was proud, and sure that it had worked. I turned off the lights and closed the door when you fell asleep with all of your clothes on and felt like I could protect you from anything, which is dumb, because no one can protect anyone from anything ever, and Indiana Jones will never put enough sand on the pedestal in The Temple of Doom.

The Same Pain
I look at all the people walking around me with their coffees and their shopping bags and decide to curl into a ball right here in public, almost exactly in the middle of the sidewalk. A lot of them stop all at once and kneel next to me and place their hands palm down on parts of my body that are generally considered non-threatening for a stranger to touch. Are you ok? They all need to know, but I don’t have the words to tell them how this pain is somehow the same pain as before, except that it hasn’t come from the decision to love. They all start to cry. Why did you even come here?

We want to pretend like the bad things in our hearts are just side effects of all the good things we choose to do, but that seems pretty hard to prove. You can try to go back and connect all of your memories with string or whatever, even color code and label each one with a summary of its most important themes, but it doesn’t make a difference. We’re all too much for our own selves to keep up with, and eventually you figure out how to see the people you care about most slowly being eaten alive.

Success Story
I take a large amount of the same or similar objects and place them in an intentionally disorderly pile in the middle of a room and give it a very cryptic title or no title at all or a number and reach out my hand to receive a large sum of money in check form from a person or group of people that represent a well known institution in some city that may be in America but may also be in a different country and say thank you for your patronage with a slight dissatisfied sneer at the corner of my mouth before puking all over their shoes and driving into a tree to an early and highly publicized death which is remembered for the rest of time through an annual reenactment that always remains period correct despite the soaring cost of what will eventually become vintage clothing.

Abusing Power
Miserable with exhaustion and hangover, we decide to begin drinking. We become drunk. All of our problems are solved. I smoke many cigarettes. We all smile broadly in unpredictable intervals. I dedicate the majority of my brain activity to documenting this interesting phenomenon. With the analysis of much data, we make a pie chart that shows who among us tonight has smiled most, and a timeline that plots the exact beginning and end of each showing of teeth. Our efforts lead to the creation of an equation that explains the ratio between an individual and their smile when given x number of other individuals present in active company. Our findings receive international recognition and numerous awards in the field of behavioral psychology. Taking advantage of our sudden and unexpected fortune, we leverage our recent success to secure vast amounts of funding for further research and spend it all on beer.

Fuck King Tut
I am hit by a car and killed. It is not a quick or painless death. I lay on my back in the middle of the street unable to move, slowly drowning in my own blood. You stand over my body holding a framed photograph of King Tut and explain that this is my just punishment for failing to understand your joke. I am crying silently as you begin to coat my face in gold leaf. Later, in an exclusive interview for People That Have Disregarded All Responsibility For Their Words and Actions Through A Complete Denial Of Reason As Being A Foundation Upon Which To Root Their Own Person, you will talk about how beautiful it was; how gold leaf really looks more like bronze when it is coated in blood; how the light from the street lamps caught the surface of it all in just the right way.

Night Thoughts
If I am awake it is a hallucination, and that is bad. If I am asleep then it is just a dream, which is all right. Unsure of what is happening, I decide I must not speak of this to anyone, which in turn guarantees that I will end up speaking of it to just about everyone. Because as we all know, no one talks about things that aren’t important, and these days every little thought that is important needs telling.

Day Thoughts About Night Thoughts
You ask me if you are hallucinating, or, rather, if I am hallucinating. Because it could be inferred that I would be the one hallucinating the scenario in which you ask me whether or not you are hallucinating. I do not remember my response. My train of thought is interrupted by the need to eviscerate at least one hundred and ninety two animals as fast as I can, which I do promptly for sixteen dollars and seventy-five cents an hour.

Every Bodies Unexplained Bruises
You bring to my attention the fact that we have recently acquired a chandelier. Its location is briefly related, but I cannot see it. I think that you must be pulling my leg, but I cannot feel it. I think that you are hallucinating a secondary landscape, ever present. Your mouth shuts up tight as you fall back to sleep, while I remain awake pondering. It would explain every bodies unexplained bruises.