Ellipsis

She’ll bust out laughing If I give her this lacy white bra – throw it in my face. It will land on my nose all agog, the fretwork revealing my old man lust.

She’ll think I’m a boob for lassoing her with a metal stay disguised as the propriety she denies as easily as she lies about her age.

She’ll know if I give her this lacy white bra, she’ll know I want to unclasp . . . .  If I give her this lacy white bra my palms will snag on the tatting, sticking, unable to pull away without tearing.

She’ll titter and take off her plain white panties with the slippery bow  –  a loopy x on a map I can’t read.

If I give her this lacy white bra she’ll take my face and guide me to an ellipsis.

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Kill your darlings*

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Cardamine hirsuta

Two years after the burning apple tree firebombed her cousin and killed him with flaming apples – the aftermath of the opprobrious roach flicking incident which ignited Veronica’s hair and sparked the desiccated old apple tree – Veronica felt healed. Tattoos in a repeating pattern of two intertwined flowers – Speedwell (her name) and cardamine hirsuta (Harry’s name) – decorated her scarred and hairless scalp, symbols of the business they created from the ashes of her cousin’s torched life. Harry thanked the gods for Veronica’s protean gifts. She was hardy, his darling Vee. Continue reading

Seytan Robb – Hooker

After the logging accident Seytan Robb was stuck. He had been a “hooker”, an irony cousin Vero would eventually note in the obituary and snigger about with Harry in private moments. His medical marijuana cost him the small inheritance from his fucking useless old man. In six hazy months, he’d burned through every nickel. When the smoke cleared, he looked around the llama farm, the extensive gardens now over run with unmarketable weeds, and at his shriveled right arm and leg and panicked.  Continue reading

Don’t sit under the apple tree

The ferry door clanged shut. Harry stood on the bow and let the wind dry his eyes as the vessel pushed away from the dock. Everything solid disappeared behind a wall of steel. Ahead he saw water fortified by saw-toothed mountains on the horizon.

“Lady, why did we have to come so far?” Continue reading

The C-word

The table wobbled while Harry doodled. He shoved a folded piece of paper under the off-kilter leg but it refused his help. He saw no solution to their homeless situation. An amateur gardener gifted with hoes, and a poet who wrote about flowers was not likely to find work in a world run by Google gods and Zucker-burghers. Continue reading

“Let’s talk of graves, of worms, and epitaphs…”*

July 13, 2015

Dear Bertram,

Your petty putsch succeeded in exiling Harry and I where sending us to the gatehouse and 27 years of childish attempts to split us up did not, although the malicious introduction of Tulia came close. Yes, Harry finally confessed they met at the garden centre where you sent him for a non-existent species of earthworm for the vermi-beds. Well, brother-dear, you reap what you sow.

Continue reading

On the lam

Mercury News

Sunday, July 12, 2015 – Ware, Hertfordshire

Bertram Smock given shit
by Evie Young

Wellingtons

Hertfordshire Constabulary were called to 1 Smock Lane, Saturday, July 11, 2015 at 6:30 a.m. local time when an unidentified woman reported a large load of manure blocking the entrance to Smock Manor. On arrival, police observed a pair of black Wellington’s poking out from beneath the pile and a Homberg atop the excrement. A crudely spray-painted sign saying Shovel This, BS was found leaning against the gatehouse door. A car with German licence plates was parked 100 meters down the lane. Continue reading

Mien – all mine.

PetuniasHarry squinted at the petunias Lady Smock had dropped on the patio table. He stood blinking like a forgotten turn signal, his serene mien disturbed by this flagrant floral bad judgement. Petunias at Smock Manor? What next – garden gnomes?

“Our war ensign, Harry. We’re going to plant them at the entrance to the estate. If dear, brother Bertram thinks I’m going to take exile to the Gatehouse without a fight, he’ll soon know the cut of my jib.” Continue reading

Harry bits

“What do you think, Harry?”

The afternoon sun highlighted her piebald dye-job like a spotlight. There was no ignoring it and saying that she looked like a Jackson Pollock painting wouldn’t work.

Poking his finger into the corner of his eyes, he withdrew a pearl of tapioca-like goop and rolled it against his thumb until it vanished. Like he wanted to do.

“Well? Do you like it?”

His breathing shortened and filled his chest with lead. The unspoken answer broke into pieces and filled the room like a puzzle he couldn’t complete. He was screwed. Continue reading