Wednesday, February 29, 2012

decalogue in blue

Judas Iscariot: It’s like, why don’t you go mix your concrete somewhere else, you know?

John Wilkes Booth: Sure it is.

Judas Iscariot: Noise. Hubbub. The soft white tails of tugboats on the bay. Flags rippled by wind’s bratty fingers.

John Wilkes Booth: Also, you could note the surroundings with pencil. Sketches, adumbrations, like wholesale buttons punched out of toile. Does this help?

Judas Iscariot: I’m getting a burrowing sensation in my nasal cavities. Somebody out there is blasting Joe Walsh’s Life’s Been Good from their convertible. It’s nearly lovely.

John Wilkes Booth: In The City is better. If you wanna give me my druthers.

Judas Iscariot: It’s survival in the city when you live from day to day.

John Wilkes Booth: Yep.

Judas Iscariot: In The City.

John Wilkes Booth: In The City.

Judas Iscariot: Hammering, the screech of high-powered saws, and the lonely nightmare of prettiness all for naught.

John Wilkes Booth: Beauty?

Judas Iscariot: Nah. Just a flash, a fad, a here-then-gone mode, a part-time thing.

John Wilkes Booth: A paper ring.

Judas Iscariot: A guy calls offering me home insurance two or three times a day. I don’t own a home.

John Wilkes Booth: You live wherever it is that you are. Home’s just a lack of creativity.

Judas Iscariot: Bullshit.

John Wilkes Booth: Sure. But who cares?

Judas Iscariot: Not me. Not in The City.

John Wilkes Booth: Great Lucifer! Zounds! Holy Holy!

Judas Iscariot: Yep. Boom my badda. Badda my bing.

John Wilkes Booth: Cartwheels! The doves are turning cartwheels in the sky.

Judas Iscariot: Those are KFC wrappers, dude.

John Wilkes Booth: More concrete! Less grass! More bricks! No more trees!

Judas Iscariot: In The City.

John Wilkes Booth: Yep. In The City.

Judas Iscariot: Bananas ripen quicker than your wit.

John Wilkes Booth: I’m at a loss for gestures.

Judas Iscariot: The mash and moan of hydraulic brakes.

John Wilkes Booth: Erring on the side of error.

Judas Iscariot: My past’s so bright I gotta wear shades.

John Wilkes Booth: Zoo animals have got a better chance at freedom than a couple duds like us.

Judas Iscariot: Duds?

John Wilkes Booth: Yeah. All smoke with no fire. Faulty organs of perception built of dream logic and temperamental delusions. Unmotivated rage.

Judas Iscariot: Bullshit factories. We smote wildly at thick air way back when we still could pass as bored teenagers in love. I’m not dancing here tonight. I’m not dancing.

John Wilkes Booth: Walk it off. Take a chill pill. Register as an undrafted free agent when the mangy mutts of war come knocking. Dine on a yacht.

Judas Iscariot: I walk these streets. I walk into terrible basement rooms. I keep my nose above sea level.

John Wilkes Booth: Take me to the zoo, she said, take me to the zoo.

Judas Iscariot: Right.

John Wilkes Booth: Like that. We take brain-dead chances with beach sand between our toes. Like all of this interesting passing of time, like being famous for a minute, like rescuing love from the barroom floor. We’ve been feasting on peanuts for too long. Give me a leg of lamb. Let’s set the controls for martini weather.

Judas Iscariot: You’ve got a plug to put in there for the sweat of relief that comes after vomiting up your inhibitions.

John Wilkes Booth: I’ll get to it. Carefully planning these things swipes the gold from the hills, those there hills, over yonder, the ones you’ve been dreaming of, or perhaps dreading.

Judas Iscariot: That’s enough. I’m getting behind myself.

John Wilkes Booth: Soup’s down. There. Did that take care of that?

Judas Iscariot: This?

John Wilkes Booth: Petty. I’m at a gain for silence, here, and you go on about this and that.

Judas Iscariot: Don’t you worry. I get tired just like everybody else. I get so tired. I get so…

John Wilkes Booth: Mouthing, “Hi,” to old buddies. No noise is good noise.

Judas Iscariot: Exactly.

John Wilkes Booth: First times squared by disaster. A portico for a squid to fly through. Ticked off minutes you’ll always get back if you keep your voice up about it.

Judas Iscariot: Elvis is the bigger God. Anyway, I’m folding. There’s too much ineptness out there to contend with. It’s like betting your life against a giant swath of argumentum ad ignorantiam.

John Wilkes Booth: Swanky. Rustic. Out of touch with the marginal mind. We who sit and watch billboards grow mold. My eyes have gone on seeing way past their expiration date.

Judas Iscariot: Saffron bubbling up through busted sewer lines in the way we go about our business. Tell me about yourself in the second person.

John Wilkes Booth: He or she is mindful of how his or her actions affect the lives of others. He/she is not a copycat.

Judas Iscariot: Slashing is quite hip, isn’t it? Keep it up. Let’s leave no cliché unturned.

John Wilkes Booth: Me/you is/are going to breakfast/dinner at/in a/the cannibal/vegan club/fortress this/that evening/mid-afternoon.

Judas Iscariot: Okay. Stop. I’m bored.

John Wilkes Booth: Figures. These trite à la modes tend not to last in the de rigueur of a constantly fast-forwarded time present.

Judas Iscariot: Fuck my life.

John Wilkes Booth: Yep. Just like that. See? It’s all a marvel of circumstantial b.s. fluttering through the grates of our senses, of our conceptions of who we are at this dabbed finger of a confectioner’s latest and flimsiest treat in the whole mixing bowl of our thoughts and fears and lies to ourselves about what’s to come, and, also, what’s now occurring.

Judas Iscariot: The miniseries of my nightmares marches on. I keep telling myself, “Okay, just wait a little longer, just a smidgen more, and then I’ll start really living my life the way I want.” As if there’s some payoff just around the bend if I keep diligently chiseling away at these boulders that I can’t muster the Sisyphean gumption to roll uphill anymore.

John Wilkes Booth: The clanky rustle of sheet-metal dreams being hoisted up farther than imagination will allow. A small part of me is willing to join the fray, as long as it’s an idyllic one, something that’s a bit easy to believe-- but just a bit.

Judas Iscariot: Close off the borders. Shut down the factories. Make shoulder pads for the bereaved, swallow-it-whole, recently insane out of misguided sympathy and neon yarn. I will not be just another Red Vine in a heat-lamp-melted pack of Red Vines.

John Wilkes Booth: A crises of disbelief. A suspension of nonjudgmental attitudes in the face of a preemptive doomsday.

Judas Iscariot: Ze Plane! Ze Plane!

John Wilkes Booth: Precisely.

Judas Iscariot: The mechanical girl plays supply’s demanding guitar, and this morning a lot of sun hurts almost everyone. Spun backwards, busted, made lithe with contrived strokes of too-easily won harmony. I am a machine-made machine. My brain is worsted, almost gangrene in the clutches of over-stimulation’s dull lull.

John Wilkes Booth: Tightrope walkers of the wavy green line make way for the mundane variety of a life lived sitting in a car parked in front of a fire hydrant.

Judas Iscariot: Loosely based on real-life almost-true events.

John Wilkes Booth: I went to the vicar, and the vicar told me, “Son, you are not the picture of sickness.”

Judas Iscariot: A funeral procession passes, all the cars’ headlights dim in the daytime, and motorcycle cops are blocking off the streets for it, and I’m left here pinching myself, testing the wind’s flavor with a spit-wet finger, and attempting to recall the great catch phrases of 80s TV sitcoms. “Whachu talkin’ ‘bout, Willis?” “Norm!” “Whad’a ya think’s in the burger?” “I love it when a plan comes together.” “Na-nu, Na-nu.” “I kill me.” “Don’t be ree-dick-you-less.”

John Wilkes Booth: Cravings come and cravings go, dude.

Judas Iscariot: Being myself is getting to be a bit difficult. Perhaps I’ll stage a mugging, use my wits to get by, and coach a 2nd grade soccer team. I will go by the name of Nikoli Shafter and wear purple corduroys with yellow sweatervests. People will be delighted by my presence.

John Wilkes Booth: Shacking up with the Holy Ghost, I see. Well, there’s plenty of dabbling still to be done. Try comminuting the shards of your broken sorrow into a fine powder of hope. Maybe see what you don’t want to see, your own faults, the lost perspective of shinier times.

Judas Iscariot: There you go, vindictive stink and all, prating on about dissatisfied pluck you used to be so used to owning. I bet you’re operating on touch-and-go mechanics. I bet you’re fiscally unaware. I bet you have peony petals littering all of your so-called roads less taken. I bet you’re not often lost in thought.

John Wilkes Booth: Bragging gets you somewhere, I guess. Not sure where though.

Judas Iscariot: The tact of a prescription pain pill, you’ve got.

John Wilkes Booth: Wait. Listen! The rain’s tapping out a few secrets in the Morse code of cloud-riddled skies about that special gray sheen that smooths slick overhead. Flat bottoms. Fluffy tops. I am growling all about it in the colors and fuzz of moss on tree branches. Hear it? My cordovan overshoes slop through it. My heroes dye their wool badges of honor with beet juice and vinegar. Should I protest laughter in the face of brave octopi? Does that quite do it for you?

Judas Iscariot: It’s like, well, sort of like if Jimmy Dorsey’s Tangerine moves you, well, I give it 33 stars out of 47. Not bad, but not quite good either.

John Wilkes Booth: The bourgeois believes she’s a…blah, blah, blah. Close the door so I can leave. Close the door. There. That tears it.

Judas Iscariot: Okay. So go about your busy playful collecting of barnacles and sewing needles and alto saxophones. I’m all gushed out of likes.

John Wilkes Booth: Crowd me in. I just burped and yawned at the same time.

Judas Iscariot: Yeah. Sometimes real life just gets in the way. You’ve got to shower, eat food on occasion, and wear clothes. There’s TV to watch and rubber bands to snap at co-workers. You’ve got to lose to win sometimes, and sometimes, well, sometimes you get rain when you want rain.

John Wilkes Booth: My babies all dress in black and blue. Versions of sunshine come and go. We are speaking on the record. We are singing for the fresh-water cretins of the shallowest manors in the pale viridian sea. The past is drifting away, out to the International Date Line of my demise. I can’t catch its drift. I am left groping for favors.

Judas Iscariot: Snap. Snip. Snap. Snip. The warbling barber is crying, “Cassandra!” in the wilderness. There’s a rankled pitch loudly punctuating the silence between his roars. Every appetite whets another.

John Wilkes Booth: Consider my grits kissed.

Judas Iscariot: Will do, pal. Will do.