Read the new literary works published on CC for June 20, 2016
“I think that’s a little harsh,” Brian said. He shoved the door open with his shoulder. A cloud of dust billowed out. The smell of molding upholstery and musty curtains emanated from the building.
“This is the worst investment you’ve ever made.”
“You’re overreacting, Parker. Wait until you see the inside.”
“Have you seen the outside? This is bad. Chugging a gallon of milk bad.”
The two men stepped into the abandoned theatre. The creaking floorboards were painted black, as were the walls. The front windows were boarded up, but some of the nails had rusted through and the plywood was slipping, allowing early morning sunlight to leak into the deserted lobby. Old posters clung to the walls, held up by pushpins. Stark graphics proclaimed “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” and “Brighton Beach Memoirs” playing on the main stage. Brian beamed.
Some people are born with an artist’s eye –
celebrating the fall of light on faces
in several shades of umber.
Shadows are just shades of purple at night.
Sun is shades of yellow in the morning.
There is no only black.
There is no purely white.
The artist sees no absolute;
everything is dilutions
capturing the way light curves in arcs that blur
the ragged edge of words that wield knives
sharpened to serrate through a heart.
It was a cold January day. The kind of day when even God was snuggled under blankets, sipping cocoa. He must have fallen asleep on His watch, because the winter skies cracked open with a ticker tape parade of snow, inches upon inches falling on our street, our yard, our driveway. There was no filter to this storm, but rather a winter snowfall of such abandon that the dog could barely navigate his daily rounds. There were no intriguing scents, now, just snow to his belly, and he begged to come in and stretch out a bit by the fire.
My husband Ben was huddled under two quilts, shivering. Radiation to his brain left his body regulating devices askew, and he was just shy of hypothermia. We both kept our fingers crossed that the power wouldn’t go out, a common occurrence in our neck of the woods.
I am the fool for being so hung
watching from a safe distance.
I lock away my words,
every time they are uttered
They are brushed from your tower walls
To the ground.
The hanged man, the fool.
Okay, hang on, sorry, hon, just give me a second to breathe here and collect myself. I, uh—I just… Okay, so look, so I’m on my way home, right, and I see this car parked along the sidewalk with a garden hose running out from the driver’s side window around back to its tailpipe. I mean, I never seen nothing like that before—just like that, out in broad daylight for everyone and their mothers to see—but you know, you hear the stories, so I pull over to check it out.
I run over and rap on the window—rap, rap, rap—but this guy—the guy inside—he’s just sitting there, head slumped back limp against the chair, not responding to nothing. So I yank the hose out the window and I’m just about to—you know, just bash the thing open with my elbow—the, uh, the window, I mean, not the hose—but then I see the little lock thing—you know, like those golf tee looking things they have on these older cars? Well anyway, that thing was sticking up, and when I tried the handle, it opened—boom—just like that.