The Big One

11 Mar

(Previously)

In the morning they were going to move north. It had rained again. At 1AM maybe. The water tapping hesitantly at first on the tent roof and then walls of it making rivers of ashes, crawling cold in the dirt under the nylon floor. Hissing over the dying trees and ripping the gray grass out of the mud like a cancer patient’s hair coming out in clumps. Snaking into holes in the blown out Sherman Oaks roofs around them. Waking up mold spores in wrecked sectional couches and pianos and entertainment centers. Fattening up the burned out corpses of TV writers on hiatus who’d moved over the Cahuenga pass seeking highly rated schools. The scorched ribs of the pit bull mixes they’d rescued. It had taken months to get one. The shelters were bristling with volunteers and their alimony money. They interviewed you like Harvard. They wanted credentials. Certificates of education about rattlesnakes, coyotes. You had to try and try. You had to know somebody. Nothing left alive to soak up the sounds and the air made white noise like a jet engine next to you. She had second shift to listen for killers but when he woke up her cheek was nestled in his armpit. Her hair on his neck still wet, smelling like campfire smoke and swimming pool. The rain calmed down to a tap tap tap on a detached gutter pipe somewhere and a gray light was picking up. Her fingers on his collarbones and her eyes were opening and she was pulling down the zipper in his 25 degree rated sleeping bag and kissing him. Her mouth stank like Slim Jim debris caught between teeth for sixteen hours but he got used to it. She pulled open his cocoon and the cold air hit his belly. Slipped off her toothpaste color underwear and crawled on top of him and he felt like he was easing into a warm bath in winter. Moving slow with her hot palms on his chest and he looked in her eyes, seeing a child outside time that he wanted to hold and protect. When he came the world went white and he could see her black bones.

3 Responses to “The Big One”

  1. Anonymous March 12, 2018 at 8:46 am #

    The birds are calling out this morning, made me think of the god of the mockingbirds. The blades barely stuttered. I think of that one from time to time. Maybe, just maybe there will be a new bit of writing, a new thing to savor today. Bristling with volunteers and their alimony money. Makes my day just that much better.

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  1. Sticky: Finally, Some Good News | delicioustacos - March 11, 2018

    […] The Big One […]

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