Badlands

Posted on 2 min read

I was told the Badlands erode an inch every year. That’s a lot when you think about it. It’s a foot since I was last here. Measurable difference in a human lifetime. The Black Hills next door erodes 10,000 times slower. The Badlands are only 500,000 years old, and in another 100,000 – 500,000 years they will be gone. That’s one of the things that I love about this place. The impermanence. I always found the Rockies so foreboding. Like the ocean they felt primordial. But they were a dominating prescience. They cast a constant shadow. The Badlands are beautiful and temporary. And yes, extend the line out far enough, …

59 Minutes in Germany – Flash Fiction

They said I need a union What union An electrician’s union To install a light fixture I guess Why don’t you do it yourself I don’t know how, do you No… my father did it I look over at my daughter. She’s icing her shin, her leg propped up on a chair. Two neighbor girls sing to her in German. I need to go to the bank before it closes It’s 3-37 Yeah You won’t have much time I have to try. Can you watch her It’s no problem I listen to the singing and push open the door without understanding a word. I try to run and lurch down …

Contracts – Flash Fiction

The shattered glass is so fine that it’s almost like a powder across the floor. Tim’s already got out tack-board from the storage closet, and the new gap will take its place in the queue behind the rest of the boarded-up stain glass windows. “Did you reset the clock?” I ask. “Shit,” I hear him mutter. “I’ll climb up and do it as soon as finish this,” he says, stretching out a ladder to reach the window. I hear the creek of the door and move towards the entrance. Listening to their footsteps, I know they’re tourists: light, haphazard, without intention. I walk to the altar instead. I dust off …

Dissolution of the Mirror

Posted on 1 min read

I’ve never been able to get used to a mirror. Some of my ex’s might scoff at that. But I’ve never been sure what I will see staring back at me. This is what I look like? I can never seem to remember. It’s a continual reacquaintance with a childhood friend, often older, sometimes younger, then I remember. Lately skinnier: the stress and Shigella induced dysentery from the trip to Peru have taken pounds off me, deepened my cheeks, thinned my face. It’s a fight to get it back. Now I feel, more than I have in a very long time, the urge to know the guy. This time I …

Denver, Asylum

Posted on 1 min read

There’s comfort to being back in the regularity of Denver. I never thought that the job, the board meetings, and this city would be a comfort in my life. But that’s what it’s become. I don’t believe it’s the regularity of the days or the ease of the city. What I like are the people I see, and the way that I waste my days. …

The Day After

Posted on 2 min read

I woke up hoping to find a new perspective, that things would seem more optimistic with sleep and the light of morning. Instead the mental vomit continues, now seeping into my extremities. I knock over a carton of milk, and walked into a doorway, my body refusing to work. There’s static in all of me: my mind, my fingers, and I’m so exhausted, but I can’t fall asleep. At the Munich airport I try to board a flight to New York. They tell me I’m at the wrong gate. I stare at them glazed, on the verge of tears, until I realize what they’ve said. I run across the gates …

Court

Posted on 1 min read

The feelings in preparing to walk into a court hearing are unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. As a I sit outside the door, waiting to be ushered in, there’s a screaming in my ears so that I can’t hear or think of anything else besides what’s rushing towards me. And yet everyone and everything in the room is silent and austere. Not having control over your relationship with your child makes you feel like a caged animal, penned in and frantic. For me, it manifests in blistering headaches and a state of mild, but near constant, unease. Like I’m trying to sprint on gravel. And yet as upset or desperate …

Asia House

Posted on 1 min read

Hey. Hey again. Remember me? …Yankee boy! Of course I remember you. I’m impressed.  I have a very good memory. Yes you do.  You come here to see your daughter. You separate from your German wife.  Right. Right. Not my wife but same difference.  And you live in South Carolina.  Colorado. Ah. Same thing. Both have a C. I remember what you had last time Really? Sure I remember. Sit down. Sit down. I’ll bring it out to you.  And an apfelschorle please. Of course. Same as last time.  …

SF, Again

Posted on 2 min read

It’s been a while since my last business trip. As result my tolerance is high for getting up early, fighting the road warriors for an outlet at the airport, and waking up on the plane with neck pain. It feels good to be back in SF. How a Best Western in San Mateo can cost $500 a night still baffles me. But I accept it, because everything here looks unassuming and costs a fortune. It feels like a slight victory that most consumer goods are roughly the same price as their Denver counterparts. Yes, I paid $1.50 for a bottle of water! Writing about SF is like writing about New …