I change the subject to the war. Manwell is in love with it.

I say, if you’re so in love with it, would you be willing to fulfill a cameramen order?

He laughs the question off through deaf ears, patting me on the shoulder and telling me to keep driving the nail. Now that you’re not vaping, you should be able to write a little more, am I right? That dried cum on your fingers looks potent enough to me. That same screen houses the girl who plays a real estate agent, the one with the little spot on her upper arm and on the right side of her forehead, just under her hairline. She was a great actress, don’t you think?

The other Musette was at the shop being trained by me. Just her and me. Everybody else was gone. She likes to read books. She is excited for the upcoming event. She likes to write. She has a degree in English.

But I can’t write poetry, she says.

I tell her about how I failed the grammar test in New York and how the boss read my piece in front of all of the employees.

I don’t mind, I say. Read me always, in front of everyone. Read me when you’re wide awake, and read me when you’re tired, and then when you’re too tired to read me, put me away and pick someone else up. In book form, I can wait forever, my human failings removed from me, I am matter, an object, unrepairable but replicable. Here for you today, tomorrow, and for all eternity, right where we left off, whenever you want me.


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