Dragon's Breath Magazine, April '92

Our Best Don't Run
by The Bald Man

     Our best don't run. They are not dead; somewhere they must be awaiting the moment of fire to appear like elephants with full ivory. In my code of honor celebrities merge screaming with obscurity, and anonymity is the heroic sense of being involved in a moment of history --a moment of cliffs and ice, a moment of smiling through tears, a time to hate what you hear, a day alone and separate in strained eye-contact, pale honesty cultivating the skill to masturbate; catching the yawn in the music that sleeps vicariously through snoring bleachers... does anything explain why our culture is in the eyes of smoke-vultures over foreign roads?
     Amazing what good friends will do to you to get what they want. There are deadly letters that we spread with tongue, with words that blister your skin. When I speak prayers into the many eyes of candles honesty melts like cellophane breath in a glove fire. Sometimes I feel like nothing more than my roles and functions, God.
     Amazing how willingly they violate your trust. A silent roadcrew staking warning signs on the edge of the desert --the sun falling -- act only pro-forma; it's much too late. I liked everything my last lover did, When the night-box closes its lid, when exhausted, the troll has shut his eyes, I'll descend to a further level of darkness the damp hot cellar air and find glinting through the dust in the corner aglow with radiant angry life, the hammer that reaches out from my eyes.
     I'll escape with the steel through the hunched-over shadows turned away to not look, the evening sounds slowing to mockingbird silence to welcome the dawn of primal darkness.
     My hammer will take down the moon and join it to our dark complicity; we'll circle the earth and shatter the cities like china plates, hammering buildings back to the earth and damping all light to extinction; citizens buried under the rubble will heave a last breath, feel the last sweat, taste their own blood and then fade -- memories whirling up from their hands will carry their souls through the smoke like sacred rags.
     The facade of the civilized will be gone forever; the heart will have pounded through the sheet of ice and the hammer will have become the bird: soaring grey streak of energy and chaos, striping the new morning sky the ribbon of the living God. outside the graveyard where I buried my past forever in caskets of dust. Rain poured from her eyes and lightning masqueraded in the alphabet of kindness, gentleness and hate.
     Amazing how we never know each other in the industrial buildings or in the stampeded gardens of strangers, and yet march on in caves with ribbon-decked walls, sunset chandaliers and echoes. It is not heartbreak that is so suffering, it is the prosaic immortality of this again, soaring infinite tangles into every ambiguity, every pocketfull of handshakes and blood-stitches, every riveted smile.
     The tin man and the woman of sand expecting rain and selling their land will touch the frosty window pane and see the sunset over the fiery waves that come in as slowly as cures. We did what we wanted and got what we deserved.
     Amazing, how much there is to forgive each other.

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