ONE MILLION DYING INSECTS BANG THE WINDSHIELD LIKE RAINDROPS


Start:


I’m walking around Portland Maine high on acid and the girl I’m with is too scared to cross the street.

and I just want to vomit because I keep thinking about three former relationships in-particular and the thoughts're really puttin the squeeze on my esophagus.

but I can’t bring myself to puke right now. I’ll save that for later.

for now I’m trying to focus on this thought I can't really put words to, except to say that, maybe, the me I think I am isn’t allowing the real me to exist.


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Eventually we cross the street, holding hands.

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i don’t think the way you think and i don’t think i have good shit as it comes to writing,

and that's my problem, i think.


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“Take a lot of photos so they know how cool we are.”

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“Gettin’ outta Dodge, ehy?”

Four days and two-thousand miles and sore backs and greasy fingertips

Coyotes nibblin headlights in the dark. Swerve.

Dog with head the size of pumpkin humps the knee-cap off of mid-twenties law student.

God damn flat tire and nice sunset between two desert mountains.

Continuing education through the back of a Subaru.

Piano plays on a vacant street in a town with homes built into cliffsides.

“The dogs’ll get used to you soon enough.”

KFC, Sonic, Taco Bell, McDonalds, BK, Walmart Rotisserie Chicken, Fry’s $5 sushi Wednesday, Buffalo Wild Wings, homemade Baklava & acorn squash.

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In a wide-open land of not shit, the only river keeps safe under the only trees.

a land where Dogs pee on other dogs to assert dominance.

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50lbs of food & gear & books & things hiked 10 thousand feet above sea level to realize you brought the EMPTY vial of pot.

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A slight, maybe higher, sense of dread creeps over everyone, all at once. Everyone, just about everywhere. The month is March.


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Parsed out over golden hills, small patches of Redwood trees rip oxygen molecules free from a carbon stronghold. Small patches of trees.

Where the trees block sunlight, thick grass grows over old asphalt and the air smells like wet dough. This is a perfect place.

A man on the sidewalk slaps wisdom into sides of a 5-gallon bucket. His tip jar is empty and so is the sidewalk.

ONE MILLION DYING INSECTS BANG THE WINDSHIELD LIKE RAINDROPS

No such thing as an ugly sunset.

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College students chase shots of vodka with ranch salad dressing.(CO)

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dry snow floats downward through a desert canyon. onto the river. and gathers at the banks like soapsuds. the air smells like fresh linen

Racism everywhere, and they confabulate personal experience of hard work and long hours with real tribulation.

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Dry, tanned skin and cracked lips, and bug bites in every imaginable crevice, standing by a patch of bright purple flowers sticking out yellow tongues, the shadow of barren mountain tickling the toesies.

These Masks are Politicized


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chicharrons, and make no mistake, this means pork grinds, pig skin, rather, fried, $3 for basket.

The biggest snake you ever did see snaking through the badlands over leather boot tips.

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A running catalog in your brain, detailing all the instances people compliment her appearance. And yours.

Houseless folk give the most enthusiastic compliments. Buy them a coffee.

a knife tip breaks in an attempt jiggle free a quarter stuck the parking meter

no need to speed. 89 dollars tickets are better spent elsewhere.


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helicopters fly dangerously low over disillusioned people holding signs

A running catalog in her brain, detailing all the instances people beep the horn at him while he crosses yellow lines. And occasional reprimands.

There’s a car in a tree. There’s car in a tree. THERE IS A CAR IN A TREE, LITERALLY RIGHT OVER THERE, a car is in a tree.

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Moss hangs off tree limbs like goat beards hang off goat chins, except for if the whole goat was only chins.

A real manly man with a no-shit-taking personality proves gender with rigorous lake skip-rock. he is a man who becomes most man over water.

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sun sets over open oceans every single night but tonight the sight bursts through familiar corneas.

Open window from the back seat feels like you’re staring right into a fucking hair dryer.


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Generic Fight.

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Sidewalks set at 32-degree angles are like hot pins in the quadricep.

A young heterosexual couple sits down for breakfast. without question, they are in love. the woman sips a mimosa and thinks about the fact her partner is yet still in love with another woman, also seated at the table. she wonders silently about what it means for her relationship. and her life.


A six-foot-two shaggy-haired man with green eyes, living out of a bus in the city pours a glass of wine for a new friend across the table and says: “the reason a wholly free-market does not work is because monopolies will pop up and the thing becomes an oligarchy. The solution is in the middle, the constant tug-of-war game between the free market people and the regulators. That is the answer. The thing we already have is the answer.”


Never have I ever played drinking games in a converted school bus . . . until now.

Drunk. Key lost in pee spot. Found. Panic subsides.

6:00AM two-mile city-hike to public restroom. Locked.

Difficult conversations about difficult emotions. And hangover.

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generally, lakes don’t get deeper; the water gets higher.

Hot & steamy chicken sausage wrapped in tortilla, looking over grand valley under mountain sunset. Can’t tell if WOOSH noise is wind or water. Probably both. She thinks water.

A shower in the river, not sure if the thing floating by is poo.


Insomnia caused by a compulsive evening ritual, a persistent vision in your head that you will--no matter what--get eaten by a bear.


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Saying that moths are uglier than butterflies is fat-shaming moths

Jumping off high rocks into shallow waters will fuck you up every time. Even if the scenery is beautiful.


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Somewhere in western CA stands a tall tree blocking a view of the mountains from a dirt road. The moonlight strikes the tree, setting beautiful patterns of light down onto the reddish-brown road soil. No one is around to see it.


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A sprinkler goes off in a towards the back end of a Walmart parking lot. Just one. And the water sprays down on a collection garbage placed under a tree. The collection only recently became garbage, formerly a small supply of food, and a few items assumed to eventually have a use. A towel, some cardboard, an electric wrist watch, a fork, a cup, twenty plastic bags to keep the collection dry. The bags are not in use. The collection is wet. Its gatherer gone.


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A mother takes a short hike through a national park to view some geysers. with her is her husband and two daughters. The mother limps and wears a knee brace. The oldest daughter, of maybe six, protests the hike. The youngest follows close behind. The oldest screams that she doesn’t want to go on the stupid hike. The mother yells for her to follow. The oldest protest. The youngest instigates, calling her older sister stupid. The oldest responds saying that no, the youngest is stupid. The mother stops, turns to the oldest who was lagging behind, and tells her that no, she is stupid and needs to listen, now. The youngest affirms. The oldest cries. The husband walks away with the oldest crying in his arms. He mumbles something under his breath. The scene was awkward.


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Before a short hike, Two students sitting in the hatch of an SUV sip on hoppy beers in a parking lot and listen to a mother scorn her daughter for not giving her enough attention. The father attempts cutting in, to calm the parking lot screaming, and the mother says “do not fucking get in the middle of this!” The father quietly grabs a beer from the cooler and joins the Two students.


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A black cop born and raised in a rough part of town turns to a white man he has known for many years and says “they do it to themselves.” The white man is disheartened by the comment and changes the topic of conversation.


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The rock-skipper extraordinaire nails a seventy foot 10-skip across the smooth waters of the Yosemite.


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Free-Climbing mountains is easier than the down climb because the motivation to achieve is greater than the motivation to reach a substantiable normal.


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Ten-hour long drives are nothing and should be thought of as such.


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The tallest tree in the world is the California redwood. The largest by volume is the sequoia, also of California.


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Typing while traveling means the scenery, the settings, and the characters will all constantly change. Some lifestyles are not meant for consistency. And neither are some books.

But then again, when you travel you start seeing the same things over and over again. Trees, rivers, beautiful rocks. And you start to wonder if other things exist—is there a place where the water runs up? Where each flower blooms five different colors? and if not, then you wonder, “where do I fit in, in all of this? I’ve gone and seen what’s out there—now, where do I belong?”


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I used to be scared of driving on dirt roads but now Red dirt soaks the cars’ backside and the windshield shows giant mounds of dry sandstone. Heading North.


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a tree’s whole life purpose might just be to have rigid hearts and names carved into its bark


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climbing plans derailed when boots are too slippery.


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Big foot is real.


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The stars are massive in number, and waves crash softly in the distance, and something rustles in the bushes to your left, and you cant sleep because youre sitting 400ft in the air, cliff slide, with wet jagged rocks below.


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Maybe this is Cliché, but you should be careful about being too careful.

I mean it, don’t be so afraid to die that you end up afraid to live.


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That sound a shopping cart makes when it is pushed into another shopping cart perfectly


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Ants set sail on a leaf & are given a Viking funeral


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On Dead Client:

“Jerome, did you have anything to say about Allen?”

“Yeah, yeah, ummhmm, okay… Yeah, I mean yeah, you gotta, yeah, I want, okay. Here’s what I’ll say about Allen. He was a good man and I want his trailer.”


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Court mandated I go to AA so I went and all I learned is that I’m not an alcoholic. I mean those guys are alcoholics. Their lives are shit and they do nothing. They just drink themselves into more and more problems. I mean really, thank god I’m not an alcoholic. That would suck.


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He had a stroke and they tried putting blood back in the part of the brain that went bad but it was like putting gasoline in a car with a dead engine.


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“Hey. You see this guy here? This guy has been my friend since preschool. We had mullets together. Hey man. I have Xanax in my nose right now. You won’t tell anybody I told you that, will you? It’s just. It’s that I mean these drugs to help me not take the worse drugs. I’m trying to get rid of one addiction by getting addicted to something not as bad. Coke heads get me angry, you know? I don’t need that negativity in my life. I got people, they want to sell me stuff, but Im like no, you know? I just need to be where I am now. At least I’m stable now, right now I am. Hey man. This is between me and you. In confidence. I don’t need you telling all your counselor buddies. Okay?”


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I am in line for the outdoor public restroom at Monterey Square. I look down at my feet and listen to the man in the stall shout:

“Yeah, just, just give me a second! Fucking bullshit! AYE, Richie, that you?”

“Yeah it’s me.”

“You hear about Bobby?”

Richie wears long hair and a ragged white shirt, yellowed over time. He looks me in the eyes. We nod to each other and he quickly looks back down. “What about Bobby?”

The man in the stall responds: “He died, man. He fucking died.”

“No, man.”

“Yeah, man. He fucking died. That asshole fucking died.”

“Come on, man. No, man.”

Something from inside the stall cracks against its metal wall. Pressure against my bladder wall makes me wants this guy to hurry up.

“Yeah, man.” Says the man in the stall. “Bobby fucking died, man. I just saw him yesterday, dude. I fucking told him. I fucking told him. I said, do not mix heroin and alcohol.”

“Really, man? Come on, man. You’re joking with me man.”

“No, dude! I ain’t fucking joking dude. I fucking told him, dude! I said dude, you’re going to fucking kill yourself if you keep it up. You can’t booze and dope man. You can’t mix it, dude. He’s fucking dead dude, Bobby’s fucking dead, dude.”

The man opens the stall. He’s holding large canvas, and is wearing a blue backpack. His hear is pulled into a ponytail and there’s paint on his shirt, and cargo short. His skin is tanned by the California sun. He and Richie are clearly without a house to live in. As he leaves the stall, he turns to me and says “Hey.”

“Sorry about your loss.” I say.

He doesn’t say anything back to me.

The Asian man standing ahead of me in line walks into the stall. I hope that he’s quick because I really need to pee.

A black man in a bright red suit with a large hat comes up to me and says: “Shit crazy round here today, huh?” he’s got large golden rings on most of fingers and two large golden necklaces.

“Seems about that way.” I say.

“You know something?” The man in the suit says, beginning to tell me something I do not know. “It’s way worse here than it was back in Chi Town. I mean sure, motherfuckers crazy in Chi Town. But the motherfuckers here, I mean, do you see that lady right?” He says, pointing to a woman sitting alone on a bench. I notice he’s got a few golden teeth.

For as long as I’ve been here, the woman he’s pointing to has been rocking back and forth on the bench, calling different people ‘Bitch,’ and laughing to herself.

“Why’d you leave Chicago?” I ask. I hear the toilet flush and bite my lip in anticipation. I really need to pee.

“I mean, this weather? Shieeeet. I mean, it’s nice out here ain’t it?”

“It’s been hot out, man. Ain’t you hot in that suit?” I ask him.

“Man, lemme tell you somethin’.” He says, before telling me another thing I do not know. “You know why else I left Chi Town?” I do not. So I don’t respond. I assume he will tell me. He does. “Man, if you dress like this in Chi Town…this ring? You can’t dress like this in Chi Town. They’ll beat you up. They’ll beat you up.”

The bathroom door opens and the Asian man walks out.

“Glad you decided to move, then. Glad you’re safe. Imma use this bathroom, now. Stay safe, man.”

“Yeah, yeah, man. You too, brotha!”

I walk into the bathroom and relieve my bladder. It’s 10 a.m. and the next thing I’m going to do is find some breakfast. I zip my pants and head toward the Mainstreet. The woman rocking back and forth on the bench wishes me a good day as I pass her.


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End.

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