Sparks Watching CamilaSparks wanted to kiss her.
Camila was seduction in sequined sweatpants. Barely 5'4" and definitely a bit more than 150 pounds, she was round and smooth. Her wild curls were a bit undone but her makeup was perfect.
Camila clapped at the girls and twisted her hips to show how it was done.
Then she backed up the music and had them do it again.
As the girls once again tried to perfect their forward ocho, Sparks stared at Camila.
Camila with her sharp eyes, with her flamenco wrists, with her Argentine posture.
Camila on the dance floor, in Sparks' arms, Camila in the bedroom, on Sparks' lips.
As Sparks watched her in the reflection of the dance mirror, he realized that he really did love Camila.
Just to check one more time, Sparks went back to the front office and picked up a pamphlet.
He lifted the pamphlet to his lips and lightly kissed it.
It caught on fire.
Sparks clapped a hand over it to squelch the flame and quickly stepped into the open bathroom. He gingerly turned
The Damn Downstairs HowlingDear Janice,
It's the howling. Every night of the week, now, it's the howling. I can take the way my cups rattle in the cupboard, the way my lights get dimmer and dimmer as the night wears on. Hell, I can even handle the constant breaking of beer bottles and the fist fights.
I'd try the management, if there was any. I'd call the cops, but I'm not exactly all kinds of legal myself. I tried bitching at the bartender and I bet you know how that went.
So I'm going down there tonight. I'm not taking any more of this "screamo" heavy metal crap going on every damned night.
I've kitted myself up in my old black leather and I've got a few things that will make a grown man cry. If they don't quit all that shrieking and howling they call singing, I'm going to smash that damned place to bits.
Well, I won't smash it to pieces.
I've got all our grandsons to help me with that.
I know, not very Christian of me, but you were always more pious than I.
Love and k
Overheard in the Surgeon's OfficeI stood on top of the dragon's smoldering head and announced, "I killed this burning bastard!"
The villagers stood there, gaping, for some moments.
Then one of them said, "We paid you to kill the maiden."
"I'm sorry, what?" I said.
"The maiden, the witch. She's the one burning our crops down."
Another villager piped up and said, "That's Old Bill. We rather liked Old Bill."
"You liked a dragon?" I said.
"He was a wyrm. But he's so old, he can't chew. We've been feeding him stew and he's been keeping the robbers away," a different villager said.
There was a long stretch of silence as the villagers and I just stared at each other.
So anyway, that's how I got this pitchfork in my arse.
Getting Away with It (All Messed Up)"I would sincerely love to put this down," Penn said.
Howie danced like a chorus girl, desperately kicking an electrical cord off his legs.
"I actually need to put this down," Penn said. Balanced on a stool, which balanced on the dining table, Penn was holding a crystal chandelier half his size and two-thirds his weight.
"Don't, I got it, I got it!" Howie said as he freed the cord. "You can make it this time, I swear!"
Penn groaned as he lifted the chandelier to the ceiling hook.
The girls got out their '97 Crown Victoria and looked up at the apartment.
"This neighborhood-" Anita said.
"They swore the apartment makes up for it," Jewel said.
"Augh, the girls are almost here!" Howie wailed.
"Where?" Penn panted. He heaved upwards and missed the hook again.
"It was mentioned in the last paragraph!" Howie said.
"Well I'm a little busy trying to save our shiiii-" Penn started to curse as he tipped backwards. How
Walking Off a DeathYou can't walk off the death. Trust me on this.
Sometimes walking will ease the sensation. But that doesn't make it go away, does it?
It's a wound in the back of your head. Walking off the hurt doesn't make the wound go away. Even when it's all scarred up and you don't think about it anymore, every now and then you'll run your hand across it. And oh, my, there it is. For a while, you'd forgotten about the death.
You have to combine the walking with watching. Watching the kids play soccer, the lovers giggle into each other's mouths, the dogs and the babies and the old man spraying down his driveway in a drought.
You can't walk off the death. Open your eyes and look alive. You've got the misfortune to still be alive. But dying is the biggest gamble in this world - you don't know what religion or non-religion wins that bet.
So keep walking, kid. Just keep walking.
Letter to Umtari, in the Year 4389Dear Umtari,
Today, I paint my oxygen lines red.
I will connect dots of yellow across my CO2 tube.
My gas scrubber will be whorls of blue.
Today, I will marry. My oxygen will be shared with his and our impurities cleansed together. My colors will mark me as a married woman.
Yet you will still recognize me, when you return.
My paint will be changed, but I still have the feathers from the Bird that we found when there was that gap in the Clouds, way back in 4377. I have all the same bells, all the same braided plastiweave. My crown is still the biggest, featheriest, and brightest of anyone's in all of Cloud Rider.
It has been many years, Umtari.
You have long since been assumed dead.
But I know your cleverness and strength.
I have not forsaken you.
Please, Umtari, please come back from the Ground.
All my love,