Tag Archives: mythology

Wait For It

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Wait For It

People don’t pray to me too much anymore. Not like the good old days, at any rate. Mostly just the occasional dingbat or screaming loon seeking divine direction for some two-bit revenge scheme. Sometimes I provide it, sometimes I don’t. I mean, after all, I’m a god damn trickster god, dig? Unpredictability is part of my charm.

But ol’ Hermes don’t get called on too much these days. It seems the desperate are more inclined to take their business to the major players: Yahweh, Buddha, hell even Satan gets more clients than me. I just ain’t in vogue in this modern age. Maybe my asking price isn’t high enough– I’ve never been interested in collecting souls, just punch lines. I just love a good punch line. I ain’t shook about the lack of clients though, because every once in awhile I get a real gem of a gentleman caller, reeking of resentment and pettiness and malignancy, and it makes up for all the down time. Lee Harvey Oswald was one of my favorites– that was a hell of a punch line, wasn’t it? Told him I’d make his little assassination dream come true and provide a patsy to boot. I stuck to my word, didn’t I? I guess I may have interpreted the deal a little differently than he, but that ain’t my fucking problem.

There are some lesser known good ones too, some real unsung heroes of tricksterdom that I lent my services to. I remember Foster Conley and his rumblefish restitution racket. That was a real knee-slapper. You see, Foster had this wife that he couldn’t stand. She was always on his case about this or that, chiding him over house chores and salaries and keeping up with the fucking Joneses (who, incidentally, lived next door). Foster may have been able to bear all this horseshit off his old lady if it wasn’t for her god damn fish. You see, she had this expensive as hell aquarium with these prized rare fish sporting stuck up names like Goya and Francois that she coddled and cherished and it drove Foster nuts because she treated those cocksucking fish better than him.

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Sailor Jerry Rum Label Love Missives: Argus Eyes

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Sailor 012

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No Nostalgia Sundays: Lessons In Greek Mythology And Bleak Pathology

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No Nostalgia Sundays: Lessons In Greek Mythology And Bleak Pathology

I dig allusions. I always have, and I probably always will. I like the idea of metaphorically pointing to something outside of a piece in scope and time and having the reader get a better, fuller understanding of what you’re going for without having to actually spell it out for them, which admittedly can be a painstaking process.

Don’t call it laziness; call it artistic license.

When I was younger, however, I saw allusions a little differently. Allusions were poetic street cred: the more you laid down, the more you were showing that you were down, dig? It works much the same way as namedropping within the music scene: the more obscure bands you know about, the cooler you are. See how that works?

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Author Reading “Slick Ick Goes On A Good One” (With The Ubiquitous Silent Film Style Piano)

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A Fleeting, Ephemeral Prometheus; or, Scapegoating Air Guitar

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A Fleeting, Ephemeral Prometheus; or, Scapegoating Air Guitar

When I was in elementary school, one of my best friends was a kid named Jon. Jon’s father was the vice principal of Dana Hills High School, which I would later attend (albeit very reluctantly and infrequently). Mr. Schlesinger, as his father was called, thought it would be beneficial for us young children to attend the air guitar there one year, so that we could glimpse how fun and exciting our futures would be. I was maybe ten years old, and even though the event would just be a bunch of pimple faced kids pretending to sing vapid pop songs, this would be the closest thing to a concert I would experience at that time.

I remember the hallways seeming really large and the ceilings really high. The students were so big that they were more adults than kids in my eyes; I was intimidated to be sure, but excited nonetheless.

As I would come to discover in time, the event wasn’t much different from nearly every other air guitar, pep rally, and school dance function in existence. Students did performances of popular radio hits of the day and classics from the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘80s. Some were more entertaining than others, but nothing really stood out too much in hindsight—with one notable exception.

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I Picture You Emerging From An Oyster Shell

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I Picture You Emerging From An Oyster Shell

(Written in 2010 about a former lover.)

Her face could launch a thousand ships,
but she’d laugh a thousand little laughs
and turn a thousand suitable suitors away
with a thumb-tucked fist
and an indifferent gaze.

The goddesses of Greece dare not mix her up in their silly contests:
the best they could hope for is a Pyrrhic victory
or a consolation prize,
but that certainly wouldn’t stop them
from inventing all sorts of nasty little rumors:
“Did you hear about her lover?
He’s not even a demigod.”

*Dedicated to Botticelli.

Dear Dionysus VI

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Dear Dionysus VI

Dear Dionysus,

It’s me again: the luckiest unlucky black cat there ever was. I believe at this point in our correspondence that it may prove beneficial to explain exactly how I, a boy of seventeen, was able to pull off seeing you so often.

Now, seventeen year-old boys can’t legally purchase alcohol (at least not in this country). Therefore, there were some logistical problems at first in procuring such things, but these didn’t last long.

I had heard whispered rumors about a liquor store that would sell anything to anybody, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender identification, sexual orientation, political affiliation and, most importantly, age. Supposedly this particular establishment would take a thirteen year old’s milk money in exchange for wine coolers and not even bat an eye or think of asking for ID. And they’d always give correct change, too.

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Dear Dionysus III

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Dear Dionysus III

Dear Dionyus,

You can let out a great big boozy sigh of relief now, for we’ve come to the point in my tale where I go into what is, undoubtedly, one of your favorite muddled recollections of mine: the night we first met.

But first, some setting and contextualization is in order. It was the end of the summer of my seventeenth year. I had largely played recluse that season, only leaving my house to ride my bicycle or to put in a few hours at the comic book store I was working at. You see, after many years of being the recipient of bullying gibes, I had decided that I would finally endeavor to lose weight.

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Dear Dionysus II

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Dear Dionysus II

Dear Dionysus,

Sorry for keeping you waiting. Well, not really, considering how many times you’ve done the same to me. I would say that I hope the expectation is killing you, but you don’t even really exist so that isn’t possible, is it? Of course not, but for all intents and purposes that doesn’t matter.

Let’s talk about when we met, shall we? That first bacchanalian reverie, back when it was all fun and games and drink and dance.

I was sixteen. Not pure, exactly, but relatively unblemished in contrast to what I would later become. Fresh-faced and wide-eyed and scared to death of just about everything. I hadn’t had much experience with girls (how that would change), outside of a fleeting and awkward courtship of a borderline mental case whose only attraction to me was likely that I was a bit more fucked up in the head than she.

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Dear Dionysus I

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Dear Dionysus I

Dear Dionyus,

This has been a long time in the making. I’m sure you saw it coming; I certainly did. However, I couldn’t possibly have imagined the circumstances being so trying. I always used to figure it would be until death do us part, which I also thought would have happened already (something about twenty-seven and some other such nonsense you sold me on). But I suppose that’s beside the point.

The purpose of these letters is to try make sense of it all, to attempt to put into coherent form that which is largely incoherent. Sometimes it feels as if we were together an eternity, while others it seems merely an instant, just one sodded drunken night out that turned into a decade and resulted in one hell of a fucking hangover.

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