“The Mexican mafia was tied to the sales of asparagus up here in the Northwest. That’s because the people behind the war on drugs decided to create a subsidy for coca farmers if they planted asparagus. So the coca farmers just planted asparagus right next to their coca and took the money. Jump to the future and you have little orange men from other planets trying to tax imports coming across the border from Mexico, including the asparagus, so you’re tryin’ a tax shit that’s funded by the DEA as part of the war on drugs. Make America Great Again! Tax the shit out of the war on drugs…’cause you know that’s a multi-billion dollar fart in the wind. Trump could hang out with the Mexican mafia for 48 hours and figure that out, but good luck organizing that shit. I don’t think you could get him to come out here. I don’t think there’s any Trump shit anywhere near here, not even down in Vegas. And sure-as-shit people walkin’ around Vegas don’t know their cocaine comes from the same place as their asparagus. They just want to eat their filet mignon, blow a couple fatty lines, cum real good in the penthouse suite and say goodnight. Me and my fiancée of fourteen years went to Vegas once. It woulda been our honeymoon except we never did the wedding part; problem was I was drunk the whole time so the marriage part of things was more like the honeymoon for most people; I mean the honeymoon is a few days and the marriage lasts a long time if you can get along…but I was drunk all the time; I was drunk for fourteen years…and if we’d gotten married it woulda been serious for maybe a week or something and then we woulda gotten drunk again…which is why she said, “Fuck it let’s just break up in Vegas,” …so that’s what we did. That shit was ass backwards. We went buck wild in Vegas for a week and then never saw each other again. She manages a gas station in Connell now. At least one of us is happy. I may be heartbroken but at least I didn’t sell my soul to the devil. Not that she did; just talkin’ about yours truly. No one cares about an old cracker, addicted to talking, preaching from beside a dumpster…but the worm’s eye view is pretty good if you wanna peer into the eye at the top of the pyramid. Why’s that you ask? Had a friend who worked for NASA; he said when you’re up in the shuttle…’cause he talked to astronauts…you come back and your bones are all depleted and your system’s exhausted and you realize we’re just a pack a roaches crawling allover a little blue ball floating out here in space and that god’s not watching; we’re just paranoid ‘cause we know the truth and can’t admit it. So we make up shit like eyes on pyramids watching us an’ shit… I mean, I did my share of petty crimes when I was young. Took a television out the back of an appliance store up here on Broadway, back in the 80s when it wasn’t just box stores, and they were doing some maintenance work on a Sunday and the back door was open and me an’ my compadre just walked in, trippin’ on magic mushrooms, and lifted a big screen TV onto a ratty blanket on the back of my beater ’68 Ford pickup and drove off. Got busted a week later when my fiancée threw a beer bottle into it after my friend said her hair looked like a wig. Felt so guilty about my friend’s drunken antics I shaved my head after that. I had fleas, of course, but you know; it was the gesture of the thing. When we made love in the bathtub she used to like to pee on my dome and watch it run down over my nipples into the tubwater. Peeing is good for everything. I used to have psoriasis; almost got that shit cured because of our pee fetish. ‘Cause that shit is mutual, you know. The sex was so hot an’ slippery it’s a wonder we didn’t have kids. If we woulda done that they woulda been freaks for sure. Like that pair of three-legged children up at a local campsite who got in trouble being on private land…and you know you can’t sue a child for trespassing, or at least that’s what the lawyers said until they found out, because of this project based down in Quantico, Virginia, that they weren’t actually children at all, but robot aliens. Well, there was just one alien, an insect-alien that split into two bodies and then shape-shifted into a pair of three-legged children. They proved it in court. Needless to say those children were never seen on that campground again. Kids used to go up there and smoke their cigarettes and listen to Guns N’ Roses until the rangers got wind of it and confiscated their weed. At this very moment federal agents are roaming the wilderness high on pot telling stories about robot insects from outer space. At least they know the earth ain’t flat. Anybody who’s ever been on a sailboat knows that. Which I guess is reserved for rich people. Meaning that the earth is only round if you’re rich. Round and fat. But if you’re poor the sun sets on your block and then comes up on the other side. It’s like a ride at the fair. They run a mechanical fireball on a track. That shit gets expensive an’ that’s why the poor people are so poor. It’s expensive as shit keepin’ everybody ignorant all the time. Vicious fuckin’ cycle: Magellan sails around the world for a trading empire that wants to convert people to Catholicism so they can go to heaven after they get murdered for being brown. It defies all logic. ‘Cause then you would go to heaven and sit down for coffee next to the guy you murdered for gold and you’re supposed to be chummy ‘cause you’re the same religion and shit. Now that’s a fuckin’ hoot. So, how’s it been? Oh, you mean since the genocide, mother fucker? Sweet as can be. Hold on while I call Satan, ‘cause I think you got off on the wrong floor. And then POOF! That guy shoots down to hell on a fuckin’ rocketship. Jesus Christ you’d think we’d learn after awhile…”
“I am my own pimp.
“I am a hooker in a gold suit, the shiny stretch-tite legs of my shine-brite pants hugging my sack, flared and assless like disco chaps, my curve-tipped, painted-on mustache the only sign. Girlie-man is what I am…I stand before a mirror like a blue-jawed pre-op before the make-up. Only in private do I manage the man, bare-faced, in man-clothes (a hirsute, pasty suit of skins, with a penis hanging from the folds of my vagina, my thrust-out nipples nested in the hair). I am a man-growing-into-woman, infinite, like a snake eating its tail…a softly curved penis, covered in scales from the hide of an impotent, impoverished leper, lurching slantways in the dank alley, yellow and naked inside his trenchcoat, hocking his arm, its twisted fist a knot of dead skin, the giant head of a sleeping, muted penis, severed from an ogre, its veins like dead vines submerged beneath translucent masses of cheesy flesh.
“I cry my warped cry into the damp alley air. Alas, alack! …my penis-arm, my dead-arm…its fist a functionless head…tied off with surgical tubing until dried out, spindle-thin, papery, then splitting…falling off, the heavy mass of the bulb pulling down until the string-thin, dried-out vein breaks and it all falls…a gigantic cock hanging on a thread of papery vein…twisting and dangling for an instant, then dropping to the floor like a sack of frozen meat.
“I am my own self, yes…my own private junky.
“I put a nail in my vein, yes…I shot it aaall up.
“I sucked up some, too, and fucked all night to pay…lost my mind in a fever-dream, tied to the bed posts by surgical tubing, needles sticking in all my limbs while I got reamed…and sometime before the seven hours slipped away, before the seven roughneck firefighters slid down the pole to a false rattle-bell, to find naught but a pool of sweet cream…sometime before…there was a rager on the ground floor.
“Yes…a crowd of grimy roughnecks stood around the open hole of white light, erect penises craning upward from their hanging stones, the hot, milky flame slipping upward into a nostril of my brain.
“Why does it feel so good, pulling all the world up a tube?
“The answer is printed on my brain, on the pulpy gray snakes rotting in my skull – a casket, a pulp-mill, a bowl of luke-warm, blood-soaked-milky-rags, a chamber pot fashioned from bone and stuffed with shit (may it turn to liquid and trickle down!). My brain stem, my eyes and ears, my nose and throat, funnels for the blood, the oatmeal-textured-shit, the information I’ve digested (though you can’t read newspapers once they’re mush). The lost periods trickle down my gums, down, down, down from the the many slippery, bloody vaginas, the fecund, earthy vaginas, the ornately beautiful, curling-mud vaginas of my menstruating brain, all once fucked deep by the purest cocaine…blown from the tips of curved-bone penises, merciless ivory penises fucking me piercingly like the tusks of elephants, spearing into my brain through the gaudily opened pores of my fleshskin.
“Now there is only the aftermath, the blur-print letters dripping from my teeth…forming words that dissolve on my tongue before I swallow them, dissolving in the mucous. All the ideas are gone forever, a sludge that slides down my esophagus… It’s just the same as when you come inside me, when I suckle your wooden cock until it purrs, until it rattles like false teeth and squirts its beam. If you want to know, you have to open me up, take a look inside my mouth…
“These are my gums, my slippery teeth (A gooey column of semen descends from molar to molar, pinkish…because malnourished smokers suffer from bleeding gums.)
“I am ill! I am sick! I smoked too much…I loved and suffered. But not at all because of you…
“…or was it all because of you…?
“The iron here is cold and dead. I have no inflection; I tell no layered truth. I lie here on the cold tile floor. I’m a simple case of much too much.
“Like a snake eating its tail, I suck my own tip endlessly, with a tire iron rammed in my ass, a cold hard plug of metal and rust… I lie here in the aftermath, the after-rape. I fuck that iron and rail it with the deepest masochistic pleasure, hearing it scrape on the cold wet tiles. I loathingly fuck it and I cum. My whole body rots and shakes and falls apart from the intestines out, erupting into the odor of fermented fish. I am ever the viper. I chew my way out with rotting teeth, searching with my tongue for the gold that’s at my center, the dollar value of my heart, which has come up, a plum-like lump at the core of vomit…
“…I pick up my own dead arm from off the dirty floor, another one of the pieces in the pool. I start at the edges…
“Oh, God! Feeding on one’s own arm; it’s a pure pleasure. I chew and chew on lush dead skin. I swallow, feel the dopeness of that glow from within…
“Now, swallowing my own dear heart, I have become a solid gold baby returned to the beauty of infinite confusions, infinite wildness.
“I am dense with dollar value, the dollar value of a heart, a slug of flesh, a hot wet hunk of contraband, a bundle of greasy bills, a weight exchanged on the scales for equal pounds of cash…
“Even on the floor, even on the cold dead tiles beneath, I still blind you all with my golden, gaudy shine.
“My superficial sweet-ness, my assless chaps of tawdry gold: all yours…aaahhhhhll yours. I open my ass as you and your team of roughnecks troop in and wait in line, casually masturbating, preparing your phones to swoop in and scoop up the magic of your first pump-railing-of-a-dilettante. Meanwhile, my glister sprains your eyes and dizzies you into nausea…
“Why oh why does the slow, selfish killing taste so sweet?”
“Let’s talk about love. It has seven forms.
“This first one’s simple.
“You just pray. I’m not talking about that churchy shit. I’m talkin’ about a feeling. Sometimes it just hits you, a need to fall forward onto your knees. It’s not a habit, not something someone told you to do. It’s not training, or indoctrination, or culture. It’s the feeling of awe for the fact that you are even fucking alive, that you are overwhelmed by the hugeness of that gift. It’s the feeling of lying on the floor in the dark, with you arms open; it’s the feeling that you are so wide…and so fragile…that when all the weight of the world presses you down like beautiful, leaden blanket…you cannot do anything but cry, with tears running down the sides of your cheeks, down into the carpet.
“It’s the feeling of walking down a city street at the dawn of some accidental escapade, when light breaks onto the raindrenched asphalt and you know for an instant you’re the richest person on earth.
That’s prayer, in fact. That moment, that wave of sensation is a prayer.
“Some say it’s self love, which is, in its highest form, love of the universe, which again is prayer. And that’s the first form of love.
“Its inverse, its closest relative, is addiction, and oblivion, and the absorption of one’s self into experiences, emotional rides, waves of sensation. Its inverse is suicide.
“The second form occurs through the body of a small child experiencing true thirst. Eyes wide, she reaches out her slender, naked arm for a drink of water. But in the moment she begins to grasp it, it is snatched away from her, so that her fingers close on air. It is not the experience of the child, but of the witness, that matters here. That experience is heartbreak…which is the second form of love.
Its inverse is jealousy, and contempt.
“The third form of love is music. Whether it’s the ethereal sound of a boys’ choir in Oxford, like a shaft of silver light shooting into the stratosphere, or the gritty sub bass of an underground club in some hidden corner of Rio de Janeiro, rippling the mud and oil in the gutter, there are vibrations that subtly alter the body…and that bodily transformation is love.
The inverse of this subtle form of pleasure, and the transformation it brings, is judgement, and austerity.
“The fourth form of love is touch: holding a newborn, or cradling an old woman in death.
And yet, the awful reverse of this may come true…that we must cradle a newborn in death. Thus this fourth form is the form of love through which we can take the pain that is unfathomable, through which we can come to know, and accept, all suffering.
“The highest reach of touch is erotic surrender. It is the tenderest, most flowing, most embodied form of love. It can exist in the flesh, or in the imagination. Through dreams, it can become a form of contact, even communication, across great distances in time and space.
“Touch can also encompass other forms. Touch can be prayer, heartbreak, or play.
“Its inverse is fear, and lust.
“The fifth form of love is a child at spontaneous play, in the out-of-doors, with another child.
Its inverse is pettiness, and violence.
“The sixth form of love is the love among soldiers who have seen each other through war…or the love among friends, consciously chosen, who have seen each other through great adversity…or through journeys across vast distances or incredible stretches of time. It is the love of families intentionally re-united, the love of long-lost friends. It is the love of the B-girl crew, of the rock band, of the urban tribe. It is the love of teenage sleepovers. This form of love, though sought-after, and dreamed of, is rare, and hard-fought, and attained through will, and grit, and steadfastness, and humor, and care. It is the love of dinner tables, and brunches, and gatherings of friends. It is the love of laughter, and celebrations.
“It is the love of the future.
“Its inverse is drama, and dysfunction, and manipulation, and fakeness, and false images, and sentimentality.
“Sadly, the seventh form of love is revenge. It is the turning point of love. It is the shadowy borderland, the place where one’s rage displaces care for someone who has been wronged. But the feeling of failed revenge, when warriors grapple in combat, and both survive, and both forgive: that baptism of blood is a form of love, a terrible, unstable form.
“Its inverse is the false messiah, the victim, and their false claims of salvation. This inverse masquerades as prayer, which is the first form of love, and in so doing, the masquerade turns the seven into a figure eight, an infinity, a serpent eating its tail…”