Tuesday July 5, 2016
In Search of Agamemnon
Bruce F. Fairley
It’s the hottest day of the year and the air conditioning is broken. We’ve rehearsed the scene what feels like a million times and Mario says, “Ah! Yes! The deaths… The deaths are… they aren’t working, mes amis. Let’s try them both in, in…” We wait, bracing ourselves, willing him to call the day, “in slow motion!” As he says it he does a demo, as if we don’t know what slow motion means. Eric and I look at eachother and try not to scream/cry/laugh. Mario wonders aloud why we’re stalling. “It’s forty degrees. I’m sweating my balls off,” I say. Eric blushes. Mario gets up. He has his water bottle in his hand. He looks pissed. He pours a bit of water into his palm and then throws it at me, right in the face. Pour, throw. Pour, throw. Nicola, the stage manager, almost says something but Eric silences her with a glare.
Monday July 4, 2016
Visiting my Sisters
Vince likes his creamed corn with beer. He eats this on Sundays, because Sundays are lazy. Mondays Vince has a tuna melt with three dill pickles. Counts as his vegetables. That and the celery. “Good amount of veg,” thinks Vince. Tuesdays Vince goes for wings with Andy. Might even have a beer if he’s feeling deserving. Always gets Honey Garlic. He can’t handle heat. Andy makes fun of him, every week, because he gets Suicide. Vince used to laugh but doesn’t anymore. He doesn’t get how a joke can be funny the four hundredth time.
Sunday July 3, 2016
Writing Down the Bones
She feels like she’s got it all figured out. She feels it so it’s real. At least that’s what she thinks. She turned twenty-three last week and the age stretches across hips and collar bones like medals – wrestling style and Olympic gold.
It’s too hot to do anything but breathe. She drinks some cold water from a beer stein. It was her father’s favourite, before she took it with her to university. Someone chipped the handle once and she banished him from her room. “That’s special to me, asshole.”
She uses her attitude to her advantage – a free drink here, extra cheese there, free entrance to the bus. She doesn’t smoke anymore, at least not cigarettes, and she swears off white bread.
Saturday July 2, 2016
Way down on the farthest reach of Highway 2, that’s where it happened. No one saw, because no one’s ever out that far to see that kinda thing. Did you know that only six cars a year make it that far North? Yup. Six cars a year. No one maintains a road that has six cars a year. So when Jenny hit the black ice there really was no way of knowing – … Sorry, just gimme a moment… I, I… She left me a voicemail and when I got it I drove as fast as I could, I really did, I drove and drove and drove and I listened to the FM radio because FM keeps ya awake better than AM. Have you ever noticed that?
Friday July 1, 2016
Trapped in the Mirror
they were the children of narcissists they were children of faces etched in granite etched with scalpels etched with picasso’s brush
they were children of self-obsession mirror gazing into infinity
infinity into their own eyes the colour oh the colour oh the
then they were children of wasted dreams always thought they’d get
further father farther fatter
they were children of a time when the tv was always on
and macdonald’s teased from every corner
Tuesday July 5, 2016 at Starbucks
In Search of Agamemnon
Bruce F. Fairley
Cut to me, 4 years old–MAYBE 5– and all the tiny humans in Mrs. Beliveau’s class have just come back from an assembly. We don’t have enough time to learn anything, not that we really ever did, so Mrs. B. tells us we can play on the structure if we can change as quickly as possible into our gym clothes. I see no one is on the structure and for some reason today I need to be the first one. So I strip down and throw on my shirt and I go running up to Mrs. Beliveau to ask her if I may “board the spaceship” (because we were in kindergarten and that’s what we called it, even though it looked nothing like a spaceship)and she looked down at me and said, “you may, as soon as you have some pants on.” And I looked down and I was standing there in my orange-starred underwear, in front of everyone, made to be aware of shame for the first time in my tiny life. I did whatever Macaulay Culkin got hired for in Home Alone then proceeded to die in slow motion; my face a shade of fire that burned me to death.