Desperation for a nap

While an interior dining space offered solace for hungry companions, the decrepit building's exterior sent chills down Mr. F's back.
While an interior dining space offered solace for hungry companions, the decrepit building’s exterior sent chills down Mr. F’s back.

In the dining area of a building, there were seven treats on the floor ready to be picked up by seven people in attendance. Mr. F watched the first hand grab a treat but he was unsure if he was going to be the next as he noticed no one else’s movement. Restless noises trailed from another room and disturbed the energy to the point when Mr. F turned his head and then faced dark space underneath his desk. A pain throbbed on the left side of his neck while he tried shaking his hands and shoulders awake from an awkward attempt at creating a pillow on the speckled blue desk chair. Its pattern made one feel peaceful in the warmth of a hotel’s uninspiring repetitions of color and shapes.

While he straightened his torso, Mr. F slid his seated half very little into comfort. He hoped no one saw his desperation for a nap in the midst of all the chattering in the hallway as students exited and entered the lunch area. Slowly the paralyzing needles crept over his legs and arms as they came to life. Energy drinks were wedged at the top of his briefcase so he snatched one and tossed it into his left hand, pulled his desk drawer open with his right, patted around for a straw and plunged it in the can after he popped it open. He needed to check the time but the alarm didn’t go off so he knew there was no emergency.

He stood up as though he were just checking his briefcase for the smallest piece of information. Nearly jolting by the memory of responsibility, his eyes moved across paper piles on his desk of grades in need of records. To his left he saw the reflection of students giggling as a teacher scolded them for not lining up properly and quietly. It was amazing how little regard students paid to rules and persons of authority, perhaps even comical on a rare occasion. However, deeply troublesome premonitory feelings arose when Mr. F speculated outcomes based on behavioral patterns, which contradicted great ambitions by some of the most uniquely sheepish individuals.

Who was clumsier, the students who couldn’t stay quiet or the teacher who couldn’t manage a night without something to soothe the nerves? It was a question Mr. F was going to write down for another moment’s contemplation until Principal H entered his room and asked, “Good afternoon, Mr. F. How are you?”

Mr. F’s expression shed light on his feelings about her arrival earlier in his classroom but as he casually responded, she angled her head to resemble pouring out any negativity before arriving just in front of him to continue. “I’m not sure you received the email but we’ll need your help starting this afternoon at lunch in the cafeteria. Could you help us with that?”

“Of course. How long do you think this will be?” he inquired.

“From eleven forty until twelve ten,” she replied flatly.

“No issue, just wanting to make sure.”

“Great, well, Mr. L is there now and I’m sure you’ve heard the students already moving,” she stepped back and into a steady pace toward the door. Mr. F couldn’t tell if the turn or passing students interrupted her final words but he took heed and took a final sip before tossing it in the small plastic trashcan on his way out.

Responsibilities in the morning

Before the tin was left nearly empty, the weather began taking a dramatic turn but the behavior worsened in the sixth grade but somehow lessened in the seventh. Announcements for buses were nowhere near and the chatter was incessant with the exception of the few willing to learn. In almost every class, at least one student possessed athletic abilities and small stature while peers carried fuller frames and personalities expressive of a desire to learn.

With contributions from specialized students of scheming, the review twisted into more of a game where admitting a selection of a prize to the strongest performer garnered more attention than perceiving respectful behavior as the norm. Chaos ensued in the peculiar manner dismissals incited. It was clear the organized process of the activity evaporated with Mr. F’s management of the classroom the first week of the year. Smiling was one mistake realized merely three weeks into the year but something from which he felt vital to recover.

Not in a long time had Mr. F been challenged in tactics encouraging adaptability, wit and creativity on such fast pace and in large volume but a challenge of significant proportions it was. Instances of hardship were ill-phrased obstacles worthy of time and consideration, especially when seeking an immediate resolution, but he decided this would be rewarding on several levels.

Before resting for the next morning, Mr. F gazed at the night sky.
Before resting for the next morning, Mr. F gazed at the night sky.

These thoughts of the classroom circulated as quickly as people who passed the counter at Mr. F’s frequent destination. Old Bess offered a banquet for the senses and spirits but very often turned into a mecca of inebriation. Though he could savor a bottle or two by himself, customary it was to find him observing fellow patrons and engaging in delightful conversations with the ease of a butterfly out of its cocoon while offering libations to new and familiar comrades. Memories of Old Bess and visits to familiar places strung together his daily habits in spite of inevitable responsibilities in the morning.

flight of listless thought

Oh, the day’s been long
and it’s not quite ten.
Brain cells may very well flee my head.
So long, I hear myself say to the boss
until I think about the inevitable money loss.

Change may come but never fast enough.
Perhaps slow it needs to move
while one sits in wonderment
of where the spirit should travel.

I remember the days I would daydream
on the vast school playground
watching clouds float by
and other kids move about,
never present was I
rather in a flight of listless thought.

Pausing to contemplate
the movement of my body
as it rotates in a chair,
the scent of salmon
in the midst of oil and butter
soothes the day’s exhaustive chatter.

half dozen mix

As though movement between leaves
on branches could be illustrated
so gracefully by the hissing and
whistling of changing winds, off
to the right at the end of parallel
lines of monstrous trees is a
doughnut shop convenience store
with a doughnut sculpture of equal
proportion to the branched greenery.
Through the glass doors walk a gentleman
of a husky frame and one of a six foot
skeleton whose narrowness provided
structure for billowing pants and
pocketed dark purple cardigan.

The scent of fried dough rushed
through the nostrils as frosting
oozed off of doughnuts lain on the
metal rack. Both men approach the
register quietly but carefully eye
the display. The cashier approaches
the register after tossing a large
coffee filter in the trash.

Cashier: What I can I get for you?

The two remain silent.

Cashier: Hey, I said what can I
get for you?

The narrow gentleman reaches into
his sports coat pocket and pulls a
small gun and points it at the head
of the cashier who remains frozen
but expresses the same demeanor.

Cashier: I have no money in here.
We’ve just opened for the day.

Narrow: Just give me a fucking
half dozen mix of whatever you
think we’ll eat and hurry up! You
clearly have some baking to do.

The cashier whips a box from under
the register, eyes glued on the
gentleman brandishing the gun.

Cashier: What kind?

Husky: Did you not hear him? Just
put whatever in the box so we can go!

Narrow: Hold the fucking glaze. I said
to get what he thinks I would like
not just whatever.

Husky: Can we not do this here?

Narrow: Don’t jump into my conversations
then, you dumb fat fuck.

Cashier: Please, please, I give you full
dozen for you to stop calling each other
names and using such awful language.

Narrow: Get on with it then!

Husky: Guess it helps to jump into
conversations.

The narrow gentleman pulls the trigger
and punctures the wall parallel
to the counter.

Narrow: It really doesn’t.

finding a voice

“The way you wear your hat, the way you sip your tea, the memory of all that, no, they can’t take that away from me.”

As this song drifts in my mind, I can’t help but think about how to show an interest in the Charlotte culture when I have so many memories of the past floating in my mind’s eye. Everywhere I look, thoughts race through my brain and make no sense as I try to slow the stream. It’s like I’ve reverted to the days I scribbled notes of madness in the journal given to me by my brother as a gift a few years ago. I can’t help but smile and chuckle a little bit because avoiding the mess of contemplation no matter how hard I try to organize my thoughts is rarely a possibility. The pursuit of fulfilling employment has proven vital the organization of thoughts as I search for a space of my own where I can thrive in finding a voice in literary mumbo jumbo.

Twas the night before…too dated and season specific.
As I find myself sitting…too existential.
In all of my days, one never seemed so…I’m onto something.
Slow movement in the right direction never hurt a soul except for the impatient…closer.
Begin with a J and continue with the medicine of frivolous behavior…so I’m Mary Poppins?
Scribble some notes and be on your way, damned wrinkled thing of a brain!…am I summoning Dr. Seuss?
Make the impossible one of reality’s closest relatives…this requires an intoxicant or two.
Find peace in thy mind, twas there no better time to establish tranquility…no words.

After taking stabs at a few voices, I find the challenge awkward, redundant, silly and occasionally enlightening. A balance must be required when trying to rationalize diction, tone, speed and clarity in addition to making characters move through time and space. I wonder though, as I sit in a room with a partial view of the buildings of Charlotte and a rather intrusive view of a living space encased by pink windows, why does this difficulty seem most imperative to resolve during moments of uncertainty, restlessness and debauchery?

[written in February 2012]

retrospective of a writer’s block

I’ve been told to write. Not think, just write. I don’t know what to write. I’ve been struggling with a writer’s block and have been doing so many other things to avoid the process of writing only because I’m scared of what will come out on the page. But what is fear? An emotion, a thought, a face, a feeling, a hair, a sniffle, a cough, a laugh, a cry, a sound, a glare? Perhaps. Or maybe it’s a competition in the mind but what are the competing forces?
[middle of 2012]

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The trees blew back and forth just as quickly as the hair on the young man’s head whipped in the air as he rode his bicycle down the street.
[June 2011]

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On a popular street in the
city of Chicago during a cold
and wet mid-winter evening,
this machine was responsible
for giving souls to objects worn
by enthusiasts of sports.
[early 2011]

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Isn’t it strange that on a day when the sun peaks through the clouds, the desire to scream and shout can linger upon the tips of one’s toes? The temperature at 3:30 this afternoon was not extremely cold but the wind carried an icy breath that cooled every pore on the exposed skin of my face. I felt the burning sensation still bother the entire surface of my eyes, both exposed and hidden by my eyelids, and I felt the watery mucus drip down my nose before I sniffled it into the back of my throat. Although the cars were passing me awkwardly while I posed as an interesting obstacle since the sidewalks have not been completely shoveled, I couldn’t stop staring at the sky with its white clouds flowing through the air–an interesting contrast to what was left of the dirt covered snow that lingered on the ground. I thought about taking a photo as I have in the past of clouds that bend and break the light waves that shine onto the earth’s surface but then I realized that I didn’t need to capture something that is going to change immediately after grabbing the camera.

I found this strikingly similar to the
[February 2011]

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Oh how the writer’s block frustrates me! I’m in the suburbs with no other distraction than my job, which leaves enough time open in the afternoon and evening to do the things I need to do. I get out at five
[January 2011]

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When Allen refers to Goethe’s suggestion to the Earl of Sandwich in 1783, whether Allen was attempting to be humorous or serious, I’m still unsure, I felt like the reference was indicative of something worth taking note. Had I been more proactive in my studies of English literature at the university, I would have felt more of an appreciation for coming across the writer’s name twice in a single day. I ran across the Goethe’s name a second time while I was searching Netflix and found Du levande written and directed by Roy Andersson.

Within the first few minutes of the film, I couldn’t help but identify with Bobbo, the spelling I will need to verify, because I often feel like a bystander of the drama of people around me, not without good reason. For the thirty minutes of viewing and nonviewing, I couldn’t help but
[September 2010]

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White rice and black beans, my habitual New York caloric consumption, relieved the somber feelings I had when I woke up in the morning. I couldn’t eat until
[August 2010]

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fascinating times at Common Market

As I transcribe the words
of a person sitting on my right at the
outdoor area of Common Market,
I find the content of his speech
rather superfluous for his companion.
I realize in my desire to capture
distinct surrounding affects,
I need not rely on conversations
of others in order to animate
the mind. Many would likely
avoid wasteful contemplation of
those in close proximity since there
are many who bask in bromidic cordialities
that impede understanding the depths of
consciousness with which we crave
acquaintance. I hate ending a
sentence with a preposition
but the help of this grammatical
crutch can be extremely advantageous.

It’s been over a month
since I arrived in Charlotte
and I am learning my patience with
verbalization, despite the veil
of interest that can be used
to extract what it means
to be, is dwindling.
However, I still crave
listening to stories that
cultivate one’s mind during
today’s economic and political
chaos of American and global
societies. Then again, with
coverage of frivolously
lucrative charades,
political dras, and
artistic hoorahs,
it seems easy to fall into
ignorance of positive impacts
on marginalized and disturbed communities,
which ones who live in bounteous bliss can incite.

As I end my second glass of Merlot,
I find my mind traveling further
from reality while male and
female voices around me
seem progressively foreign.
Perhaps the speakers’ blaring
99 Luftballons alters a comprehension
of brogue more so than Bordeaux merriment.
I also arrive at the point of intoxication
where the validation of inquiring for a
cigarette is inevitable and I cannot
avoid laughing at my laudable
expenses, which contradict
saving money to address
the financial obligations
accrued during unique
educative journeys.

But what of bodies
of legislative, judiciary
and executive exploits, how
are college graduates expected
to fulfill repayment standards
when governing bodies, both
domestic and abroad, seem
incapable of setting
a positive example?
This thought bubbles
after taking heed to the
perspective of a commentary
created by an insightful minority
as does the influence of social
networking on conversations
enjoyed when in public.
How can online sensations
serve as points of elaboration
for those in close company while
jointly transforming into pivots of babble?

First, with how much wine should I fill another glass?

instead of sleeping

I wonder what will happen this
season of The A-List on Bravo as it
progresses over the next few weeks.
I think it’s quite interesting how
drawn I am to the plot after only
seeing two episodes of the second
season, this coming after watching
the entirety of the first season,
which served as an intriguing escape.
Nyasha seems like a breath of fresh
air that is needed and I’m curious
to see how her personality transforms
during the next few episodes.
I applaud her very open manner of
addressing people she’s unfamiliar
with and look forward to learning
a bit from her if she is able to show
the drama between other characters is
meaningless because while she has proven
that she wastes no time in frivolous
issues and conflicts, she has shown
that her career is more important than
building an intimate relationship with
another person, which I find extremely
admirable and worthy of celebration but
also grow weary of sharing similarities
due to closeness of ages between us.
But is it disrespectful to close an
ad that serves the purpose of changing
people’s lives simply to watch another
episode of The A-List?