Dreadful WhispersI think it’s the anxietymedication, or the lackof, that keeps my dreams frombeing dreams, but not horrificenough to be nightmares.The images won’t linger longerthan a few minutes, but the tensionstays, a butterfly on my shoulder,waiting to brush my ear witha whisper of dread that sets my pulsethundering.
Lateral ThinkingI don’t remember where it came from – I always remember having it, at least since my teens. It probably came from Toys R’ Us, because that’s the only other place I ever saw the rectangular black-and-purple tin box with the word “MindTrap” emblazoned boldly across the top, blue streaks of lightning in the background. Within, some 500 lateral thinking puzzles made class time a little less boring.I used to take the entire box to school, whittling dead time away in class stretching the membranes of fellow students finished with their busywork for the day. I had every solution but the mathematical ones memorized – the math problems, I felt, were a form of busywork unto themselves, reliant on actual logic and numbers rather than creative solutions. The misadventures of Detective Shadow, Sam Sham, Sam Shady, and the magician Dee Sceptor laid the foundation for an obsession that continues to this day, and create a problem for my present day self
This must be how Gatsby felt.The dock slats of my Facebookchat list have a green lightat the end, flickering onand offand on again.That’s Internet in smalltown Virginia. So close.So far from your Midwesthometown, the one you leftme in, stretching my arms out.And then one fine morning –
The Problem with OmnipresenceGod went to the optometristbecause His eyes were full of graveyardsand tombstone-shaped cataractsclouding His vision.Sometime around the eleventhcentury, the lush green iris of Hiseyes had faded to the colorof peeled paint; then, over the decades toblack.The eye doctor couldn’t findanything wrong, but he prescribeda pair of bifocals to make Himfeel better.
OssifiedYour voice oscillates overthe phone – now strong, rushing,tumbling to get the words out; nowreceding, wearing thin, tired.Tumultuousstrainedunbridledhushed.The shoulder was built tobear burdens, to lift, maneuver,stretch – built to be a compromisebetween mobility and stability.Unyieldingflexiblestringentadaptable.The gash on your arm, eightinches of allografted precision, nullsthe purpose of a shoulder – to carrypain on behalf of others – and makesmy own shoulders heavy withthe weight of incapacity:borrowthemasneeded.
Heavenly FatherOnly Jesus gives Himties for Father's Day.
Father's DayJesus gave Him golfclubs one Father's Day.Every shot was perfect, sailingin perfect arcs overthe heads of the other fathersand sons spending timetogether at the course. Hisson's last ball sankin the water trap and Helaughed at the irony.
Sudden ImpactGod gets a pain in Hisfunnybone, but He doesn't thinkit's funny at all. He bumped His elbowon a continent once and accidentallykilled all the dinosaurs. He liked those.