....and here I was, in the usual place, praying to yet another smirking deity.
I had just finished a mission for the last du'jour fair-weather god who had repaid me by doing a mighty work in pitching me out of a done deal where I had sworn my love and offered up as reverent swag having Tallahassee Trailer Babies with an emaciated, semi-retard, lawn-hippie. Now I was on to the next higher power in a much lower place named "What's the Use?"
I sat with the worst broken heart of my life, missing that hippie and the astral retard babies that had been promised, whom I had already named Bridget Ann, 'cause she told me in a dream that was her name, Joe Jr, after his daddy Wendel, and Leetle Wildcard Brak, to honor The Baby Jesus.
It was a sweet, sweet deal that wasn't meant to be I guess. Grander Plan taking effect, but I ask you: What could be better than a Florida double-wide surrounded by a big family?
A slather-jawed, liquored-up tabby cat dragged his already filthy tail through a fetid puddle and made his way over to me. He sat down on a crate like a human, and crossed his legs, and flashing a gold front tooth offered me a cigarette.
"Are you my new power animal?" I asked, thinking that I had contacted the Native American spirits in my semi-conscious rantings to have "someone" DO "some-thing."
"Heh, heh, heh," rasped the cat, and he pulled out what at first I thought was the largest lighter I had ever seen; but as he tossed the stainless steel into the air I saw something that was WAY better than a power animal: it was a power appliance! The greatest power appliance known to my ethereal being. A forgotten icon of the electrical Holy of Holies!
"You too down to earth, sugar ass," advised the rummy-joe of felines, "and I don't just be meanin' yo sittin' on yo ass in this limbo gutter. Look to the skies, Mizz Gabriel, the electricity that work up there, work down here, too... power motherfucking animal sh-ee-it. Now concentrate and get yoself out of this flux time, gal. Look to the SKIES."
And as the tabby passed out I looked up, felt my belly fill with the fire that only majick can fuel and the beautiful gleaming silver of the Toaster floated high and magnificently in the sky. The warm, radiating orange of coiled heat glowed like a halo. Here It was, like a genie in a bottle, the Toaster, the Blessed Damn Toaster that had sustained me for years, coming back for me even though I had denied It, turned my back on It's best intentions, thinking that I knew more than what the Universe knew.
The voices of thousands of gods and goddesses sang to me from above. The Toaster Choir, in the detachable crumb-tray pews, spoke to my heart and soul in a language I could understand, I could feel, recognize. A wondrous truth was ready to explode inside of me, purifying and resurrecting me for the great deliverance I had been waiting for all my life. I fell to my knees, the tears in my eyes causing prisms of colors to join with the shiny reflection of sky and steel. Crying with relief and joy I sang back, "O Silver Grace, Sweet Shiny Grace, I welcome Your words and will follow Your divine guidance without question...."
And They began.
"Beloved, Seester Rosa Gabriel... We can see your house from here."
And They left in a slow fade-out of yet more Toast that would never be.
I dragged myself up on my feet, back over to where the tabby had passed out in his own vomit, feeling like I always do when I experience life: slightly amused and enormously cheated. Not even a southern trash gator boy or one witless child to fall back on. "Baby," Kitty slurred through dripping fur mouth, "you gib me a kiss an straight-way I turns into a prince for ya."
"You have vomit in your whiskers," I replied in my growing bemusement.
"Yeah, heh, ok, I do... Blow me then!"
I walked away, directionless, thinking the thought: "There's got to be more than this."
And wanting an end to that worn mantra I suddenly found myself with a yen for Strawberry Pop-Tarts, no frosting, with a pitcher of Kool-Aid and for the first time, ever, wondered with more curiosity than dread, "What's next?"
Huh, that didn't feel so bad. "YEAH", I cried, "what the hell is next, I'm ready!"
I set my heart to "lightly browned" and truly felt like maybe I was finally getting the hang of this side-show life adventure after all.
Blessed be the Toaster, damnit!
I still miss that skinny hippie, though.
Copyright © 1998 Swagazine Six