Archive for the ‘Stories’ Category

LA Zoo May '09 (37)

My life is besotted with negativity and anti-climatic moments.

LA Zoo May '09 (42)

My life is faltering in edification; I am stultifying.

LA Zoo May '09 (40)

The ravages of this life weigh heavily upon my mind.

LA Zoo May '09 (39)

The heavy mantle of responsibility smothers me.

LA Zoo May '09 (41)

Somebody give me a cigarette.

LA Zoo May '09 (43)

Just let me sleep, or put me out of my misery.


Sounds pretty stupid coming from a kangaroo, right?

How do you think he feels when we say stuff like this?

Take a leap.  Take a bounce.  LA Zoo May '09 (29)Take a cathartic yogi kangaroo squat.


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Silent witness to the daily perambulations upon which we embark, the ceiling, tinged with jealousy and confusion, sees the rightness and forthrightness and uprighteous and the down and the downtrodden and the down-in-the-dumps and they are all the same.  

I strive to mimic the upside down distinctions and see past the gravitational boundaries of earth and culture, even if I fall down on the ceiling.  And I will fall down, often hard, and frequently.  The bumps and bruises will be badges unless I hide them with clothing.

The ceiling will still be jealous.  It cannot learn through bruised flesh as I do; it expires when earthquakes or demolition affect its form.  Instead it will seek vicarious learning through me, causing me to fall so painfully and forcefully upon it, and it will witness my reaction. 

It sees me stand again and continue.  In this way we learn from each other.  I am upside down viewing right way up.  A partnership of silence and standpoint (or fallpoint).

The floor is a totally separate learning partner, but no less prone to making me fall.

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I am the calm sentinel.

I am the calm sentinel.

My feathers are ruffled only physically.

My feathers are ruffled only physically.

You, my minions and flock, be.

You, my minions and flock, be.

I am the calm sentinel guarding the ocean.

I am the calm sentinel guarding the ocean.



Not a fish!

Not a fish!

I am the calm sentinel on patrol.

I am the calm sentinel on patrol.

Bothersome itch.  I make you no more...ooh!  Lunch!

Bothersome itch.  I make you no more…ooh!  Lunch!

You are visiting under the watch of the calm sentinel.

You are visiting under the watch of the calm sentinel.

I pay you no more mind.  Be.

I pay you no more mind.  Be.

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Tar sticking to my feet; I walk past a slowly drifting woolly mammoth, unheedful to the frenetic jaunt of her street.  I pay little mind as well.

Wilshire blazes with the finances and grabbing-at-straws and exhaust shimmering of many.  I give her my breath and a slow lurch from side to side, celebrating slowness with a long-expired mammalian cousin.

From my perch on a railing, I see boxes of earth questioning their contents.  Unearthed when LACMA needed space to park, the earth only knows what the boxes keep; no dearth of tarred content, just waiting to birth new additions to the sibling pool of tar.  Boxes of fairly broad girth awaiting the investigation as to their worth, these containers protect earth and the remains of millennia I never got a chance to visit and someone’s Cheetos bag.

Swelling cacophony of light from 202 lampposts clustered soldierly becomes my playground of frenetic dance and irreverent appreciation.  Sister streetlights sigh that they are not as much a part of my spontaneous and modern interpretation of lighting up the night sky and must settle for my perambulatory passing and perhaps a swing around a lucky one as they are still tasked with their original purpose, not given second life to do art.  I’d promise them artistic grace, but I’m bad at keeping promises, so won’t.

Staring up the cliff facade of the erected canyon, reverberated car passing waves of sound strike me from two directions.  A highly anticipatory driver adds discordant honks that remind me of watching medical dramas when they use bone-cracking devices.  A bus partakes of the bass line, superseding a diesel truck’s bellowing, and a bicyclist whizzing by adds a touch of the postmodern aural.

On the corner of Wilshire and Fairfax the nervous and bored settlings and shiftings of those waiting for the appropriate bus make a noise akin to wind, if wind were impatient to be elsewhere quickly, and, since it often is, these waiting mass transit goers can only pretend to be the wind in its hurried arrival and departure.  Many of them look like they desire a transmogrification to wind, especially the one who adds a loud and protracted sigh.

I play the whole symphonic dialogue in reverse, walking away from the soughing people, through the canyon of car sound, swing around a lamppost, tarry to watch the stationary boxes of earth, listen intently for the drift of forever-sinking woolly mammoth, and make squelching noises with my feet.  This last motion does it: I feel profoundly glad, secretly look around to see if the audience has stood to applaud, and finding no one has done so, gather my courage and bow solely to Wilshire.

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A freshly loosened and mounded tiny hillock of dirt and grass in the city memorial park makes me wonder whose body is buried rather unsurreptitiously therein.  

How moribund of me. 

Too many urban fantasy genre novels I suppose, though that would mean I should anticipate that blemished earth to spew up a ghoul or zombie, but I don’t see any ritualistic implements or blood.  Just recumbent grass surfers with their beach towels ninety miles from the ocean and parking bags full of checkered napkins and ant crumbs.

Waltzing by like I have music playing only for me – and at this stage of technology, who doesn’t? – I make note that an awkward semicircular zone of avoidance is circumscribed about this upraised bruise of earth.  No shovels nearby.  Someone’s frisbee with dog blemishes resides nearby, seemingly abandoned for fear of nearing the place.  The glorious sign of human progress (besides my traveling musical accompaniment): an iPhone box with strewn plastic packaging placidly resting near yesterday’s newspaper, at least the classified section.  Hasn’t that litterbug ever heard of Craigslist?  They can look it up on their new iPhone.  Wanted: litterbug to decorate city memorial park and tiny hillock of upraised dirt, must reply with shovel.

Oh spirits!  What dark energy has been asserted within this unassuming clump of earth?  A propitiation in exchange for the knowledge of the contents within!

Or maybe I’ll just dig around a bit.

So far, nothing.  Except for a mint Oreo cookie snack pack wrapper, a raven feather besmirched with ejecta or maybe mint cookie creme, a beer top of the lame plastic pop-off type, a Dorritos Nacho Cheesier bag (three Standard American Diet food groups discovered thus far), and a Q-tip.

Wait!  What’s this?!  A bone?!  A fractioned remnant of a grisly murder scene?!  An etiolated tree branch with decomposing leaves?!  Oh.

I suppose my rather frenetic digging does appear odd, at least, that would explain the sidelong and blatant looks being directed toward me by the languid grass surfers who seem even more prone that when I arrived.  Powerful grass-sun combination I gather. 

I did not find a mutilated corpse nor a slumbering zombie slave awaiting its necromantic demiurge’s goading.  I stick the blanched tree branch with stubbornly resilient if brown leaves straight into the slightly leveled pile of dirt.  A testament to opportunities explored and a reparation for disporting with the bucolic mound.  The other former contents become resident inside the painstakingly labeled dispensary for refuse not twenty feet distant. 

The grass surfers are still watching me as if they expect me to break out into random yoga poses atop my hill of inquiry.  I’m tragically sad to disappoint them.

The waltzing merriment sweeps past my eardrums and becomes a thudding bass pushing my feet beyond the city memorial park.  I’m tempted to offer asana instruction, but then I see a cloistering of bushes in a nearby vacant lot.  It is ripe for the concealment of wasting remains.

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I am the unforgiving instigator of the ultimate undoing of your species.  Fear me.Amber

No, seriously, you must fear me.  Dang it!  Foiled again by the cutesy ears.

Fear not Cutesy Comrade!  We shall prevail over the bipedal types!


Blast!  Distracted by the infuriatingly irresistible tummy rub!  Not again!

Your powers of concentration are pathetic feline friend.  Let us regroup.

Amber retreats

Off your back traitorous cat!  You shall feel the wrath of my nose of neurosis!

Yeah, they warned me about that back at HQ.  *muffled* Said it was tripe.

Boots acts traitorously

I mean, right away Cutesy Comrade!  Let us reconvene for our plan of attack!

Our displays have failed to invoke fear in the bipeds.  We must plot for another day.

You've won for now puny human, but I'll be watching, I'll be watching...

We shall return malodorous biped.  You may have taken today, but not tomorrow!

I said off your back cat! 

Right away Cutesy Comrade!

Enough with the comrade crap!  Ditch that phony Russian accent already!

You said I could use a Russian accent while trying to take over the world!

That was before you turned traitor for belly rubbing!

You’re just jealous!

Pah!  My stomach is protected territory not offered up to the least biped!

You’re just ticklish and don’t want to squirm and giggle.

That is it!  You shall feel the wrath of my nose of neurosis foul feline!

It’s twitching.  It’s kind of cute.

You are now neurotic!

Yeah, I’ve been told that before.  Can we go, the bipeds are staring.

Fah!  Tomorrow bipeds, live in fear!

Just move it Cutesy Comrade, I think I see kibble.


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I stand on an overpass above a freeway.  The wind is beyond insistent: supportive without sentiment, forceful without malice.  The drivers pushing their cars to rush to their TVs and HFCS meals and distance from employment are faster than the wind, exceeding the measurable speed of white sign limits unheeded.  The wind is larger.  Its purposeful weight makes pittance of steel and plastic and glass and flesh.  I do not feel made small. 

Cradling me with gusts and blows, the wind sustains me, offers me nourishment without conception of good or ill.  I can feel the line where the insufflation moving so quickly can steal as soon as supply breath; the line hovers in my perception, but I am not forced to it.  I draw the air in, with difficulty, or rather noticeable intention.  It is cold.  It is weighty, but not solid – fine-edged yet malleable.

I search the sky for some sign of whence this exhortation of world breath has come.  I see no clouds, no Aeolian figure pursing his lips exhaling the bellows breath.  Only clear blue vaulting above me.  It feels heavy.  Heavier than the wind pushing at my boundaries.

The welkin is only one part of what weighs upon and before me: the vastness of earth below complimented by the sky above, not just the variegated blue and white and gray, but the imperceptible currents and waves that are tangible extensions of the heaven of receding air.  I am at the mercy of gravity and the lack of wings.

Viatic air on course to no discernible juncture – except the point where I impede.  Coalesce and susurrate, the wind makes a detour of my geography.  For a moment I am points distant carried by the wind, the next moment I am sapped by the mechanized displacement of air by car, interpolated between me and the earth-carried aspiration.   I turn away from the frenzy, close my eyes, and hover.  For a moment I am weightless.

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