Tuesday, October 04, 2005

their houses weren't really houses

They had gas caps, plastic windows, and small mirrors that made the desert seem bigger than it actually was. Their houses had plates made by prisoners and tubes that led into underground tanks of shit and shower water.
Your mom’s shit and your dad’s shit, and your shit, said the boy with the pubic hair, whose house was parked less than a mile away.
So, least I know where my dad shits, said Marcus, the boy with a mother and a father. His body was small and unclean. They were both unclean. They had bloody gums, rib-tight chest skin, shirtless out-pouched guts, belly buttons good for picking and smelling, the crust hot with the stink of dried summer sweat.
The boy with sprigs of hair on his balls was called Junior, named after his father, the famous soldier that went off to serve his country, but actually just left one morning and three years later got drunk and drove into an oncoming car on Highway 85, killing the family of four on impact, his own fatal wounds suffered from the bullet he shot through his throat two nights later. Junior’s mother doesn’t know about Junior’s father’s death, and if you told her, she wouldn’t be able to place a face to the name, having never heard it before. And so what if Marcus didn’t have pubic hair, at least he knew his father’s real name and what it felt like to get hit in the face.

Marcus always went over to Junior’s house because Junior’s mother had two jobs and was never around. She wore lots of makeup for the job at night, so she never noticed when they sprayed her perfume and tasted her lipstick. Unlike her, Marcus’ mother didn’t wear makeup— she smelled like a person, not thousands of drunk flowers.
Also, the abandoned junkyard was closer to Juniors’ house. The old man that owned it died facedown in dirt, between rows of broken refrigerators stacked high enough so the fall would easily defeat his already defeated body. There was still a mark from where his head cracked the hard desert sand— the rest of his body, like his life, left no impact on the earth. Marcus and Junior found the dead old man and put him in one of the refrigerators. He prolly laksit’n there, Marcus drawled as he started climbing the refrigerator towers.
This was the end of summer. The one where they both turned 10 and discovered jumping. Junior could jump higher, but neither of them knew this because when they jumped, they threw their heads back and stared at the sky so they could see where they were going. The summer they put an old man in a refrigerator. The summer Junior saw his mom fucking— it’s called fucking, the fucking man said, now close that fucking door. The summer that Marcus’ mom packed her things and left for good, but really just cried in the Plexiglas shower while everyone else was asleep. The summer they threw each other off mountains of useless metal machines and desecrated things out of ignorance.

2 Comments:

Blogger Jerome Jackson said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10:59 PM  
Blogger CM said...

You know, if you don't read that story too carefully it's like they're living in some postapocalyptic society... or -are- they?

12:01 AM  

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