April

It’s 4:20. I scraped my pipe, but there were smooth, shiny pieces that came out, which I thought might be glass, so I decided to treat myself to not inhaling, and I dumped the resin in the trash, but then I went out onto my porch and lit the empty pipe, heating it like a stove, causing a little bit of smoke to come out, which got me a little high.

Everything I do is for the good of the people. I don’t know who I am without you. I don’t see you as people though. Everything I do is for the grace of God. I see you as an extension of the holy ghost. You are the voices in my head outside of it. The legion. The one that I have been talking to my whole life. I’ve gone over this: you are the voice in the woods and at the top of the stairs. I wouldn’t call you the thing that pushes the closet door open, or the thing that hides in my hanging robe. You have always stood with me, watching when that shows, helping me through and giving me a hole to shovel myself into.

Everything brings a spirit with it. Life is full of them even in the emptiness. The less I sleep, the more anchored I become within the realm wherein I can perceive them. I keep asking how I can go on here, within this pressurized desert, and every day I keep on going. Life is mysterious like that. Power fountains from adversity. Have faith in the lord when you lose faith in yourself. What have you got to lose?

You have got nothing to lose unless you surrender to the darkness. But by then you are already lost in the sense that you are found being carried by a clipper becoming the tumor of yourself which dangles on clamping youth and feeling, the collapsers collapsed beneath life.

My wife wakes up from the couch after twelve. She’s distressed. Her stomach is in her hands. It’s hurting. I walk her to the bathroom and rub it for her while she pees. The stream is closer to my face than I’m comfortable with. I’m worried that I’ll have to wash my robe.

I lay my wife into bed and rub her stomach for less than five minutes more before standing up and making my way out onto the porch. My atomizer has gone bad. It tastes like burnt steel. The worry is that one, if not all three, of my batteries are going to blast out and implant themselves into my skull after blowing off my fingers.

I re enter the apartment and continue working on my website. Twenty minutes in and my wife is rocking around, moaning. I’ve got my headphones in, so it takes me a while to notice. Once I do, I go over to the bed, and she tells me that she is experiencing sharp pains.

It feels like I’m hungry, but I’m not hungry, she says.

She has me turn her over. I do it as slowly as I can, but I could go slower. I’m trying to avoid her pulling me into bed. I still haven’t masturbated. Masturbating in the bed is out of the question. Musette is too sensitive to movement right now. I need to escape. 

The outside world is a cold, dark place. It’s questionable what keeps the lights on. After staying ahead of the clippers for three quarters, we were overtaken and sent into a loss. It was the first time the playoffs had come home in over five years.

I almost, and certainly could have, cum to Kim Kardashian’s sex tape but for a loud fart, which may have been a bong rip, and which erupted right before she told Ray J to cum on her face. It was part of a soundtrack that shouldn’t have existed other than to devalue Kim. It definitely sucked my orgasm back into myself, and I had to cum to a video of two of my favorite twins competing against each other at shoving different size dildos into themselves.  

My boss has me bring twenty boxes of poetry, which he got from the old Serendipity Books, into the store so that an employee who once had my job can triage them. This former employee now runs the literature department of our state’s humanities council. He writes poetry and will be performing at an event that we have scheduled for this weekend. We had another event scheduled at a local restaurant, but they dropped the ball on publicity, and so my boss canceled the event with them, and brought it back to the shop, where it was originally scheduled to be held.

It feels like a defeat, but I know that I did more than was expected of me. I’m hoping that my boss sees that and that he doesn’t ask himself what I’m possibly good for. Should cuts need to be made, I hope that I survive. My team is losing. My city is stagnating. I have found a home within inertia. I’d say sorry but for that I don’t say that anymore. I don’t even have a computer, and I’m hanging on by a thread. Little packets of moments come through the twitter feed: chunks of time.

I’m in charge of copy. We’ve got to have the event live on our site. The littlest little thing can throw everything over the edge. Baby with the bathwater. Watch for brown paper. Watch for bubble wrap. Check your recyclables. There are diamonds in the rough. 

May

I have been tasked with taking six boxes of poetry to Logan.

“You can use my truck,” says my boss, but I’d rather take my car.

“Just make sure you pay yourself for gas.”

The clouds, a loaded fleet of black flurries, roll over the canyon. I’m coughing, and I’m weak, but I must go on. The double dose of Flonase that I took is doing me no favors. It has been helping with my snoring, but it failed last night, so I got kicked in the back, and my immune system fell through.

I’m achy, and I’m shaky.

“Do you have a fever?”

My vision is flashing.

“We’re almost there…”

My blasted arm serves proof that I’m willing to step up and take one for the team. I’ve been dosed with a round of whooping Tetanus. The wound is throbbing. I’m clutching it as I push apart snow flakes.

The baby is in the twenty second percentile. Lucky number twenty two. She looks out at me from the 3D ultra sound, displaying what I stand to lose.

Musette’s eyes. Musette’s nose. Musette’s face.

I thought I’d take it better. I pretend not to care. It’s gotten so serious in exactly the ways that I thought that it could but didn’t believe it would.

“Please eat.”

It’s like I have aids.

Musette takes care of me. I’m being squeezed around the heart again. I’m trying not to complain. Not out loud. I can’t stop thinking that it’s my gall bladder. I need to shut up about it around my wife.

I just went to the doctors but forgot to mention it, bringing up, however, my affinity for Sons of Baconators and how they’ve got to be better for me than the regular Baconators.

This made him laugh.

“If I had a clipboard for my favorite daily sayings,” he says “this would be at the top.”

Give the baby all of your energy. Die gracefully. My grandmother has nothing left to give. Carlton can only give so much. Obviously Musette. It’s my time to pray. So much has happened that I’ve been away from. I’m losing my grip on reality. It is slipping away in the form of monotony and routine.

I’m supposed to be posting to social media everyday. That’s what the accountant tells me. She’s upset that I didn’t respond to somebody’s Facebook message. What’s the point?

The complaints are where I start bleeding out. My spiritual energy really takes a hit. I’ve only got two Omeprazole left. I expect to be up coughing tonight, but there’s a chance I won’t be snoring.

Slowly moving through my morning, I have nothing left to give. 

There’s always more, says the voice of my preceptor. We’ve still got time. 

E-cigarette in the apartment. I am outside of it. It’s for the best. I’m not supposed to use it anymore. I have insurance signups coming back around again, not to mention the fact that it burns my throat.

My coffee falls forward into the trash can. I go back and get my e-cigarette. You could call me strong, or you could call me weak for being at work today, though I know when I’m weak and when my writing is weak. What do you want me to say, sorry? Not to you. I’m not sorry to you. I’m sorry to myself more than anything.

I call this the chase, and I’m getting tired as I’m about to land one in the hole. The defenses are against me. What has this current been but a competition, the likes of which make an event, the outcome still unknown.

But I know the pieces fit. I’ve seen them fall away. Over and over. Always riding the brinks. Crashing and cresting, still obscure in my lack of absolute success.

Girls peeing, two by two, on the street, behind cars, in the Czech republic. Heavy streams and little trickles, running off the butt, soaking into their shoes, everybody either tip toe squatting or standing like a man, pulling at their clitorises, aiming for maximum distance and the least amount of blowback. 

Golden State approaches, complaining about the nightlife here, wishing that they could be playing LA.

Musette and I have to go to Lamaze.

It’s not Lamaze, Musette says. It’s a basic birthing class.

We’re seated next to soccer fans. Musette and I are wearing our Jazz shirts. The soccer fans are wearing shirts with the soccer team on them. We’ve got two pillows with us. They’ve got cases sewn by my mother in law. One has cartoon, personified sushi, and the other’s got cartoon, personified chips and dip. The dip is being chased by the chips. It looks miserable. 

The hospital feels like a church. The small hallway at the entrance shuffles us into a small elevator. The elevator takes us to a deserted floor. Biohazard boxes litter the hallway. Soft, soothing music plays from a room down the hall. The room is full of couples just like us, on their first child, pillows on their laps. 

The teacher tells the women to massage the men. I sit in front of Musette, and she rubs my sinuses and my chest. I am trying not to cough. The last thing I want to look is sick. I’d be seen as a pariah, an enemy. I shouldn’t have come. What was I thinking? But I couldn’t abandon my wife. I’m a good husband. A good father. 

They may have lost, but we knew that was going to happen. They just couldn’t make their shots, and they weren’t taking enough of them. They knew that they were through. That last game was their chance to survive, and they didn’t. This was the moment where the enemy’s will overtook ours, and we experienced our last suffocated moments as the enemy raped our surrendered body into a corpse.

I should have stayed until the end, but I let myself leave. Gor-don Hay-ward chants filled the stadium. The fans want him to stay. I want him to stay. I don’t know what I’ll do if he leaves. I don’t know if I’ll keep watching. I’ll be devastated. I wish I would have stayed. I would have chanted with the rest of the audience. I would have liked to have been surrounded by the chant. I’m connected to Hayward at a soul level, and he is the soul of the team.

I was out on the porch vaping. There was toilet paper on my dick. It fell off and blew down into the courtyard. Both my wife’s cum and mine were on the toilet paper. Some dog will probably eat it.

Back inside, my right hand, like a relentless and bedraggled horseman, hops back on my penis and wraps its spidery limbs around the pulverised girth, taking another run at clearing my pipes, chugging into a picture that I took of my wife’s twin on the trail, in a sleeveless sports top with a pink sports bra underneath. In the background, I have a video running of a cam girl, whom I have never seen naked before today. She’s squirming around the tips people are feeding her Lush device, moaning and speaking with a Brazilian accent, the television in front of her showing a couple of shirtless hunks plunging their butts and rubbing their chests together, giving the cam girl a sunset of her own to rub into.

I should really be in bed but find myself cumming again after stumbling upon an article in Uproxx that highlights Carrie Coon. I search her name nude in an incognito video tab, and the first result is a sex scene featuring her and Justin Theroux from The Leftovers, season 01 episode 07. It’s the first time that their characters have been intimate, and there’s a moment where Justin Theroux’s character hesitates, his face being zoomed in on, a look of consternation on it as he contemplates whether or not he should proceed. His wife has separated from him to become part of a white wearing, cigarette smoking cult that doesn’t speak, and Carrie Coon’s character has been suffering through the whole series because her family was taken from her during the rapture. This is both of their first moments of moving on.

Carrie Coon releases Justin from the moment by moving up and down on his cock, causing Justin to smile, continue, fall forward into Carrie, and finish.

I have to watch the video a few times, studying its peaks and valleys, before I allow myself to cum, but even after all of my warming up, I miss the mark. Justin’s face is on the screen as I’m tensed up, jizzing, watching through the side of one eye, with my jaw locked, not wanting to look at Justin, but also not wanting to miss the primetime shot of Carrie that I’ve been saving up for.

I don’t want to be gay. Justin seems like a good guy, but I don’t want to look at him that way.

What’s so wrong with it, asks the Preceptor. You would advance if you allowed yourself to cum to both men and women, transgender, children, animals, and your relatives.

Considering the possibility, Justin becomes less than good enough for me. I know others who don’t respect him as an actor, and I’m finally seeing it for myself. There’s not much to him. He’s not worth my first gay orgasm. He’s stiff, lifeless, and dumb. I need someone who can rise me up in class as well as progressivism, someone that I’d be proud to call my own. I’m not talking about a Carrie Coon, though she’s fine. I’ve fucked myself to enough women to make each individual one not so important as the grand collective. Losing your virginity opens up a whole new can of worms. It sets a standard. You’ve got to be a little choosy when selecting your figurehead. It’s a matter of making history.

The sunlight is too bright, shining through the windshield. My wife is telling me that she wishes last night could have lasted forever. 

“Me too, sweetheart,” I say, relieved that I went to sleep at all, having little to no grip on the situation, links tugging at my penis left and right, the cum continuously refilling and puttering out of me like I am a magic car with an infinite gas tank, Herbie the Love Bug, riding again and again, fully loaded forever.  

The constant drone of a weedwacker hovers in my proximity. It isn’t a sound that I’m supposed to hear in the city. The building’s yard crew is out. Carlton is pooping on a pulled out weed that a brown skin man is hunched over on his way to pick up. 

Mr. all smiles, full of hellos is rounding the corner. He’s the grandpa on Arrested Development. I’m having a hard time choosing whether to ignore him or exaggerate effulgence. I didn’t tell you, but he came out of the elevator the other day as I was about to go up the stairs. We both had dogs. It was the first time I’d ever seen him. I was heading off to work. He was taking his dog out to the bathroom. He said hello to me, and I said “hi” back. It was a quiet “hi”, subdued in my antisocial fashion, but he looked straight at me and said, “Oh, you don’t speak.” 

I stopped, turned, looked at him and said, “What?” 

“I said hello to you,” he said “and you didn’t say anything back.”

“No, you don’t hear. I said ‘hi’ to you.” 

He laughed nervously. I turned and headed up the stairs, and he went out the front door.

After depositing Carlton into his kennel, I slung my bag over my shoulder, told Google to shut the music off, and then I left for work, popping out the back door coincidentally right in front of Mr. all smiles, full of hellos. 

I craned my neck and looked up into his face, making sure that I had his full attention, and then I waved my arm in a long arc, giving an exaggerated “WELLLL, hello there!!!” which made him giggle again in goofy injury. 

Dropping my eyes, I made my way to the car, confidently, slowly, and without looking back. 

Seeing him again, here and now, I choose to neglect paying him any attention. Any more over the top social interactions, and he wins. The whole point of going out of my way in that fashion was not to prove to him that I could but to punish him for interjecting that I should. 

I’ve got other things to deal with. Now that the situation is down in writing, I can move on. As I said, time is slipping away from me. I’ve got to catch as much of it as I can and bottle it into the book that I’ve been commissioned to write. I’ve got white supremacists waiting. Misogynists. Call us the old gods, if you want to be kind. If you want to be cruel. I like to think of myself as a fixed sign. That which is dead, still living. 

Every step an opening that I have to attack, driving the paint, shooting from far out, playing tight defense, and treating every instant like a defining moment. 

I don’t have the luxury of neglect. Musette is telling me that she’s been thinking, last night and this morning, that it might be a good idea for us to switch over to my work’s insurance earlier than we had been planning. 

Let’s just rightly assume that Gordon Hayward will be back on the team next year. How else are the Jazz supposed to remain the Jazz? What’s a man without his face? What’s a team without their heart?

You are my favorite clown, says my best friend in the form of my personal online therapist, but where’s my publicist, my agent, editor…