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Archive for September, 2011|Monthly archive page

Giving Up The Tyrant by Ricardo Calzada

In by New Author on September 29, 2011 at 4:35 pm

My life has revolved around a vision I developed in my childhood. A
mature boy, I made my vision objective and devoid of overly
speculative details. The wider the target, the straighter the arrow.
The future me and how he would form my life was well envisioned. This
formulation was an escape from bounds suggested by my predecessors.

As I steer towards becoming the man I created, the vision gets grainy.
The surety that helped me bud in the poorest soils is no longer there.
The tyrant that propelled me beyond life’s joys is no more and I am


In by Michael on September 28, 2011 at 8:09 pm

Ok, here’s what you need to know. I’m from Kansas and I went to Harvard. The most influential people in my life are people I’ve known only for brief periods. I’m young in that I’m idealistic, and I’m grown in that I’ve got a better grip on life than people 10 years older. I smoke cigars, like my dad, but we’re different in most ways, so I get along better with my mom. I’ve always had a girlfriend, but I know I’ve never been in love. I think you’re beautiful, and all I want right now is to kiss you.


In by Chris on September 25, 2011 at 9:50 pm

“Did I hear you say Marc Jacobs?” shouted Dauntay Shalom. His cultured, effeminate, horrified voice rang out from the cigarette-littered front porch of a brick house in Chico. “I don’t give a shit!”

Only Dauntay was on the porch, his angular eyebrows casting streetlight shadows over a lean face. Partiers stumbled past below.

“Keep having your beer conversations about Marc Jacobs! I don’t give a shit! I’m a diva! I’m a fashionista! I don’t give a shit! Report cards? Students? Fuck that, I’m a diva!”

He fell silent and took a long pull from his cigarette, his manicured hand shaking.


In by Lara on September 23, 2011 at 4:15 pm

The restaurant was bustling. Hardwood floors and old infrastructure made for plenty of noise and not much else to hide behind.

“Want to split the truffle gnocchi in brown butter and sage?”

The prospect of yelling at each other all night wasn’t appealing, but this was one of the trendiest restaurants in the city right now. It was sure priced that way, anyway. And now, they could afford it. They looked at each other.
“Wanna get outta here?’

Come Find Me

In by Chris on September 23, 2011 at 11:17 am

If you want to know where I am you can ask the man smoking cigarettes in the Elks bowling alley in Casper, or the Iowans holding hands on the boardwalks in Thermopolis, or maybe the dinosaur excavators, or the signs that say you’re on the trail of the Sand Creek Massacre. Just look out in the mystical sculpted barrens of the West my sandstone sojourn look for bullet casings in creeks or tumbleweeds blown in Morse code from Owens Valley. I’ll be out there in the fungus forests the birthplace mesas of America the myths and tractor-trailers, come find me.

I Imagine my Idea for New Theater Being Very Edgy and Popular for a Period of Time Before it Becomes Imitated and Played-Out.

In by Michael on September 23, 2011 at 12:38 am

A performance where the performer goes on stage silently. The medium-sized audience begins raising hands and asking questions, and he answers each one. Through this process, a story is revealed. The story, which the performer knows ahead of time, is a prewritten work of fiction, and, as such, the performer is bound to a predetermined universe of answers. In this way, each performance unveils the same story, but through a new lens, unique to the particular audience and particular showing. Audience members leave whenever they want, and the show goes on until no one has any questions left to ask.

Appearances Can Be Deceiving

In by Lara on September 22, 2011 at 9:18 am

When I was thirteen I started stealing the decals off of expensive cars. I would make them into long chain necklaces and sell them to my friends for fifteen bucks a pop. Sometimes more if it was a really nice car like a Porsche or a Mercedes.  I don’t look as unassuming and innocent as I did when I was a little kid in a private school uniform and a cookie monster lunchbox. Now, people just expect these kinds of things from people that look like me. But the irony is, I don’t do that shit anymore. I just steal cars.

Four-Month Anniversary

In by Chris on September 21, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Oscar took Jaime to dinner on the observation platform of the Space Needle for their four-month anniversary. After they finished eating, she wiggled a photograph out of her wallet.

“Look, it’s me when I was five,” she said. “I’ve never even shown a boy this.”

He peered at the tiny image. “Why not?”

“I’m giving it to you. It’s…it represents the most innocent part of my life. I think the core of me is still like that picture.”

He silently examined it, never looking up to see how different Jaime now looked. He pocketed it and signaled for the bill.

Alligator Purse

In by Chris on September 21, 2011 at 6:47 pm

At Goodwill Outlet World, great blue bins of secondhand junk were hourly wheeled onto the floor. A cadre of retail buyers, bored and shabbily dressed, filled their carts in bursts of searching.

His first time there, Marcelo found an alligator-skin purse buried in one of the bins. He tucked it under his arm with the strange feeling that the other customers, the regulars, wanted it and had their eyes on him.

That night he spent hours at his kitchen table trying to determine if the purse was actually made in Paris from alligator or if it was just a fake.

A gathering

In by Wyatt on September 21, 2011 at 4:46 am

With cheers they all smiled and hunkered down, comfortably cradling their hot cocoa or zealous masala chai. The room was warm with the heat of their eager bodies and a shy breeze brushed through the screen door.
Skin prickled.
“Who’s going to start?” asked Sarah, the most enterprising from day one.
“I will,” Matt offered after a tingling pause.
“Who with?”
Matt glimmered. “You?”
Sarah’s cheeks darkened like the crepuscule and her cool confidence wafted away. Silently she offered Matt her hand and he led her to the private room at the back, all the others’ eyes watching them, sparkling.


In by Wyatt on September 19, 2011 at 3:34 pm

What exactly fits inside this familiar nugget?
Three months two days sixty-eight malaria pills fifty-nine gigabytes of six thousand photographs and a sliver of cloudy quartz nicked from the kenyan savana.
A sunny monday by a pool in which the water wiggles seductively.
A lost home whose temporality erased your mark and who flourishes on impossibly easily in your absence.
A crumbling redwood.
An opulent anemone wallowing in the salty shallows some meters under the fog.
A freedom, a plan, a sense of urgency, a delight in patience, more than a couple paradoxes and three melty squares of rich milk chocolate.

There’s this park

In by Lara on September 19, 2011 at 2:23 pm

There’s this park which is filled with weeds that look like daisies and shmoopsy couples laughing and kissing behind oversized sunglasses that make them look like old movie posters and wet grass that looks comfortable to sit on anyway. A man eats a large tuna sandwich slowly. He throws the plastic wrap diligently in the trash can.  An old Chinese woman gathers soda cans and water bottles that have been dotting the wet grass since midday. The sunny afternoon is gradually losing to the inevitable turn to dark and the bugs are starting to gather, but no one makes any moves.

OK and maybe, or

In by Chris on September 19, 2011 at 9:01 am

OK and maybe, or
the that which
was be and can
to not or were
for more and
to be, and because
the not or which
of the who without
the can’t into, or
often the under,
the and or and and
aren’t to what which
with for who
to be of how, or
OK and maybe but
what of are have
were and will to
can, the or or and
of are to can’t of
yes, and with can be
to had a who
but not of in, or
will an if the of
to maybe with to be.

New Books

In by Michael on September 18, 2011 at 8:43 pm

Starting a book, reading the first sentences and paragraphs, is always a painful experience for me. You’ve got a guy in a cab talking to the driver, and the writer tells you what the guy is holding and what the cab driver is wearing (corduroys) and you have no idea whether the book’s about the guy or the cabbie or the history of corduroy pants, and you don’t know which details to pay attention to because they matter, and which ones you can let go of because you’re not here to memorize each word. I don’t know how I survive.

Heavy Metal

In by Michael on September 18, 2011 at 8:42 pm

Metal is music for musicians. There’s a lot of complexity to the music, Jay tells me, as though he’s been waiting a long time to have this conversation with an attentive but uninitiated audience such as myself.

It sounds busy because there’s a lot going on, and only a sharp ear can hear the intricacies. This stuff doesn’t just happen by accident. You’ve got to be pretty gnarly on the guitar to make this music, there’s no denying it. Metal hasn’t made its way into the pop sphere because, frankly, it’s over most people’s heads.

Yeah man, tell me more.

New City Run

In by Michael on September 15, 2011 at 1:23 pm

I left Rick’s apartment on 14th street in the East Village and ran to the East River. I went south, under the Williamsburg Bridge and then the Manhattan Bridge. Once I reached the Brooklyn Bridge, I jogged the wooden path held by two massive pylons, dodging tourists and letting bikers dodge me. I hit Brooklyn and went left, back to the Manhattan Bridge and across it, looking at the gentle upward curve of the Brooklyn Bridge like a proudly finished project. The bridge left me in Chinatown unexpectedly, and I bushwhacked trough traffic, garbage, and crowds for the home stretch.

Artful Insemination

In by Chris on September 7, 2011 at 8:27 am

Tired of suburban pregnancy? Unable to get the dazzling conception you want from your man or all those milquetoast sperm banks?

Well look no further. Here at Artful Insemination, we never just impregnate you. We do it artfully!

Try our Random Enlightenment from Coincidence (REC) program, where several sperm donations will be mixed by half-deranged artists, increasing your odds of birthing a serendipitous Flash of Inspiration. Or, in our Beauty from Tragedy program, we’ll give you the pain of Gonorrhea along with the beauty of Fetus, so you can find true creativity in suffering.

Create life. Live art. Artful Insemination.