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And then    it was ten-fifty-seven

When her man stumbled through the door

Repeating the paper towel, recasting the ashtrays and counting all the daughters.

“Is it for the lack of a moon that you followed me

where the parked cars… Wait, is that the latest issue of American Male?”

 

But it was her lost moon,

the toothpaste on the cabinet and the

discount beer that splayed around.

 

He wasn’t the only prone guy she’d found,

Only the latest.  With a shirt to match his intelligence

And that old rabbit trick that no one enjoyed.

 

“Don’t brush that mustache.”  She threw her bottle on the floor.

“I like them Western.”

from Heavy Metal Performance Art Quarterly, Vol. 3, No. 4

The Heavy Metal Woman sat on the lumpy bed holding a can of off-brand, lemon-lime soda, a half-smoked cigarette dangling from two fingers of her left hand.  Her motel room was one of those soggy and efficient numbers that turn up in sparsely visited towns.  She was there to see a mid-level band play a rarely used local amphitheater on a date near the end of their tour.  I’d arrived slightly early for our interview and as she opened the door, she’d squinted against the morning sun, still hungover from the previous night’s Millers.  I started our conversation asking about her history.

HMPAQ: When did you first know you wanted to be The Heavy Metal Woman?

HMW: It was more of an event than a knowledge.  I wasn’t sitting in my chair and thinking about it. I was just in the middle of a place, a sidewalk.  And then I knew it had already settled on me.

HMPAQ: The whole identity, aura and glamour?

HMW: The whole bowl of nachos.

HMPAQ: Did your decision to legally change your name upset your family?

HMW: My previous name was prissy and had an oppressed heritage. I felt myself stepping away from that, but not falling into something similar. If I was going to be The Heavy Metal Woman, I wouldn’t hide from it. My mother didn’t understand and my father said that he understood, but I knew he really didn’t.  He later died in a truck fall.

HMPAQ: Do people call you Miss Woman?

HMW: (snort) People who know me personally call me Heav. People who don’t know me call me The Heavy Metal Woman.  People who don’t know me and might want to know me call me ‘babe’. People who don’t know me and don’t like me or what I stand for call me ‘that pale stupid metal chick’ or other things.  On instant messaging forums they call me THMW.

HMPAQ: What do you eat for breakfast?

HMW: Cigarettes, raw oatmeal and stale beer.

HMPAQ: Is the heavy metal woman a dying breed?

HMW: It never was a breed in the sense of a pedigreed amalgamation of genetic traits. But in the sense of a wild stallion-like expression of femininity at the edges of existence, you could call it a breed.  There is a kind of gentrification of heavy metal women that my practice attempts to critique.

HMPAQ: I read in a fan forum that you sometimes like to ride skateboards in the nude?

HMW: Fans say a lot of stupid shit! (snorting)  I did that in Barstow. I wanted to show that city how to open up to a new expression.  I also was really hot in terms of thermometer reading. Later, I bought a T-shirt at the Family Dollar.

HMPAQ: Is there room for just one Heavy Metal Woman?

HMW: In this motel, there is.

HMPAQ: How about in the world?

HMW:  At one time, I wanted to be a role model, but then I woke up and smelled myself. Who died and made you princess hot shit? If people want to imitate me, like, be a Heavy Metal Person, or be Heavy Metal Questioning with capital letters, they’re welcome to it, but I’m not out here on a recruiting mission.

HMPAQ: Is salad a heavy metal thing?  Can you eat watercress or kale?

HMW: Heavy metal came from the ‘burbs, and I eat ‘burb food. I ‘burb it up. I keep it ‘real’. I use a lot of mayonnaise, mustard and potato chips. Also beer.

HMPAQ: Can French people listen to heavy metal?

HMW: My philosophy is, no.  I don’t think about French people, but I can answer your question without thinking.

HMPAQ: Why don’t you think about French people?

HMW: They don’t exist on the heavy metal horizon. When Napoleon came and invaded France, they didn’t rock out and destroy, they just submitted. I want to shred the memories of submission, wherever they manifest.

HMPAQ: Napoleon didn’t actually invade France.

HMW: I don’t think about France.

HMPAQ: Have you explored the Swedish heavy metal scene? I hear it’s really dark and extreme.

HMW: I explore it in a way that doesn’t involve travelling to a country that’s not the United States. When a band comes to my country, I take them under my arm and wrap that band around me, and roll in them. But if I have to leave the soil that permeates me, that gave me my metal roots, I’m not cool with that.  I don’t want my metal roots to wither and decay while I’m on some un-American soil.

HMPAQ: You have your own fans that come to the shows, sometimes to see you as much as to see the band. Do you ever feel like you’re detracting from the main event?

HMW: No one can tell you what the main event is, because you have your own brain. (Pointing at the interviewer’s brain.)  Whatever happens in your brain doesn’t happen in anyone else’s brain.  There’s a metal song about that. I once knew a girl that tried to do what she thought happened in other people’s brains, but she lost her job.

HMPAQ: Five quick questions. Which fictional character do you find most terrifying?

HMW: Mary Poppins.

HMPAQ: What’s your position on keeping chickens in closely confined quarters?

HMW: As long as they’re not around me.

HMPAQ: Vladimir Putin?

HMW: I would go to their show.

HMPAQ: If you could be a playwright and write a heart-rending drama of staggering dimensions, what would it be titled?

HMW: Cleo in the Tidepools.

HMPAQ: Do you use underarm deodorant?

HMW: Does the Pope wrestle pigs?

HMPAQ: Thank you for your time, Heav.

HMW: Rock on.

My Bad Poetry #23

In the country of the blind men, no one-eyed dogs are kings

except dogs that follow the men who are no longer blind

in the country where bled men wander among the mongrels

no longer in the land where the bland man controls the curs

dug into the lead of the men who handled the course where

the men-eyed dawns of the blonde man underlined the dark blur

of the kind man behind the floor where the grim hand curved or

a bold man kindled a flour time hoard with minstrel’s sore

and more staid men with no sense fell into the cold wet moor.

  1. Cuban cigar stub on guest pillow
  2. Bedroom TV tuned to Nick at Nite
  3. Your portrait of Uncle Xavier is turned face to the wall
  4. You have a huge Andrews Sisters hit stuck in your head
  5. Strangely erotic dreams of Andy Griffith.
  6. Inexplicable piles of doilies on nightstand
  7. Strong desire to attend Robert Mitchum retrospective
  8. Your closet smells like Uncle Toby’s socks
  9. You feel compelled to change your will to leave out Cousin Scooter
  10. Your roommate says a dead relative has been visiting you in your sleep

gilly918


Moody sixteen-year-old barista Devin Mulwray is doing his best to ignore bizarre manifestations at his job in the chilly Northern California town of Arcata. Already teased about his recurrent ‘phase-outs’, the last thing he needs is to get pegged as a guy who sees ghosts. It doesn’t help his state of mind that his boss is a sarcastic slacker, his single dad is always on the road with clients and local occult fan girl Nayra is spreading ‘ghost boy’ rumors about him online.


But when violent paranormal activity badly spooks teens at an abandoned estate, Devin’s pushed into investigating by his eccentric friends Clive, a budding composer, and Rex, a tech head excited by ghost hunting gadgetry. At first reluctant to get involved, Devin’s encouraged when Emily, one of the more empathetic girls at Grey Bluff High, is impressed with his daring.


Together the friends explore the creepy Rousten manor…

View original post 210 more words

  1. Has never won her fantasy football league.
  2. Favorite Avenger: Black Widow.
  3. Has a secret husband, Norris, in Provo, Utah.
  4. Predicted the Pilates revolution.
  5. She insists on making her own meatloaf.
  6. Her sitcom idea about a wacky British colonial administrator with a panther fetish was turned down by the BBC.
  7. Favorite Angela Lansbury film: Bedknobs and Broomsticks.
  8. Had a youthful fling with Bismarck.
  9. Has secret plan to be the first Queen in space.
  10. Her rap name is Lazy-B.

 

She devised an electronic cereal

that detected her lack of excitement

but the alternatives suggested were damp.

Somewhere beyond her fictional redwoods

stood the monumental Kleenex box,

decorative live mice nodding, adorning its corners.

They would pretend to chew her until

the moon, with its poor sense of timing,

approved the impregnable shapes

oscillating just beyond the glassine limit.

Then the desiccated milk, deprived of speech,

made a detuned rasp of false languor.

 

I planned a documentary about your regrets

but the interview subjects besieged me

until I found a culvert with an apathetic dog.

Glum five hour talks left me Scotch-thirsty.

The brass spittoons were irrelevant and

the fictional sheriffs bothered me less

than the obtuse pantaloons.

Somewhere a forensic submarine

made an expedition into a foreign malcontent’s

residue of Francophilia.

It was just like watching a cardboard crepe

sink into the empty tub, analyzing your

claustrophobic row of decisions.

Check out my paranormal investigation parody:

American Weirdness

The Chicken Diaries

A Short Play

Glaring sunlight pours through the windows of a Mexican fast-food chicken restaurant.

Two cooks in orange uniforms busily cook chicken on the grill.  At the counter, Pedro and Jorge stand by the register.  The restaurant is empty of customers.

PEDRO

The funny thing is, I don’t even like chicken.

JORGE

This lady yesterday, she wanted extra hot sauce.

PEDRO

(chuckles)

Yeah, man.  Bet you gave her the sauce.

JORGE

Yeah, man.

PEDRO

(sighing)

Some people, man, they come in, don’t even know what they want.  Makes me crazy, homes.  Order some two piece and I’m like, what’s your sides and they stand there like they don’t know what’s a side.  Do I gotta do the whole list for you?  Cole slaw, corn, beans, tortilla chips.

JORGE
It’s the same sides every day, homes.

PEDRO

It’s not like it changes.  Hey, today we got a 2 piece with corn tortillas and, oh shit, look at this crazy shit: candied yams.  Lima beans and bok choy.  Greek olive salad, homes.

JORGE

Some people don’t pay no attention. They don’t know what sides are around ‘em, what kind of chicken’s in the world, don’t even know where they are.  They be going out of the chicken place, man, which way to the mall, dude, I forgot?

PEDRO

Forget the mall, they don’t even know from the mall.  That shit is so past them.  It’s like, where’s my home, dawg? I don’t know which way in the street to go, I’m so out of it.

JORGE

They get their chicken, they forget how to eat it.  What part goes in the mouth, homes?

PEDRO

Hey, boss, do I eat this hard white part that’s all round and looks like a q-tip?

JORGE
What do I do with this rubbery part, homes, that slides around and gets slippery and shit?

PEDRO

Do I got to mash this shit up? Or do I put it on a chip?  What the fuck?

JORGE

Yeah, some homies is messed up.

(sighs, looks out the window)

There’s a lot of chicken in this restaurant, homes.  Some chicken maybe nobody will eat.

PEDRO

Word.

 

Pedro leans against the counter.  Jorge leans back against the wall, and straightens his name tag.

CURTAIN