New October decomP hits the net like a caregiver out back feeding the nuns leftover Cheetos.
I was in my tree stand, deep in the forest. I was reading the new decomP. I thought, “Is this issue about breasts? If it is, OK, I mean we all have breasts. Whoa, three deer just glided by. (That’s what they do–they glide, this ghost-like drifting through the underbrush and your mind goes, “How do they walk without a sound?” How? They glide.)
Tom Mahoney writes a flash fiction about cleavage and tipping. There have been a lot of sociological studies about how waitresses can increase their tips. Research has shown the best way is to PRETEND you like the customer. Also, establish an inside joke!
(Sir, I hope those onions on your plate don’t make the potatoes start crying!! HA HA….)
I think if you touch the customer you get 10% more or some shit. If you sign your name on the receipt. Oh, sorry. Men lower their tips if they doodle or sign the receipt; only women increase their tips.Whenever the waiter/waitress squats at knee level to look at me directly in the eye, to be Down Here, with me sitting, I want to punch them in the forehead.
A few days ago I was buying a six of beer and a bag of corn tortillas and some shredded cheese and some salsa and the line was empty and I walked up and the cashier said really loud, “Sorry about your wait, sir!” And I said no problem. See, there was NO WAIT. I was immediately there in line, and so was he. So what gives? Later in the car I thought maybe it was a brilliant way to deal with the public–to just open with an apology, to open with a fictional wronged-act, with a Lower Level. His line was obviously automatic. And I have been a cashier–the public thinks you are actually a cashier, the machine in front of the cashier. Etc.
I thought Tom’s story did a good job with conflict and concept, but could have been more. I have written flashes like this myself. They need more. Maybe punch up the language a bit. Maybe introduce a sister or a spleen or Aztec Queen.
Halli Melnitsky writes a flash about a girl wrapped in drug coronas and Christmas lights: “She brought her hands to a point above her head. “Look,” she said. “I’m a Christmas tree.” A red bulb pressed on her nipple and lit her entire breast. “I’m your happy childhood.”
What a flash (pun). I think it would be perfect for a reading. I like readings to be:
2.) Sexy or funny.
I believe the above hits all three.
“…from his artistic anarchy, or agony,” Jesse Tangen-Mills writes.
Now we have language, flow. Cool name, too, Jesse. There is no breast connection here, except for the phrase “God-thunder.”
This Comorbidity by Frank Hinton is full of the type of thing I like to teach young fiction writers: Fill your stories with STUFF. All objects are metaphorical. Give us a chance to let them breathe. Give us (reader) an opportunity to see, engage, supply the remaining gaps, embrace. It isn’t that we analyze objects like a classroom, etc. Not my point. My point is all objects are ALREADY metaphorical. They echo. We are like fish in the water–we don’t see we live within a metaphorical universe, unless you take us out. Or something. The other day I read a poem about a guy throwing a penny into a wishing well, and his wish was to get rid of that damn penny. So.
that night I cut a small incision under
my left breast, stuffed two fingers inside
pushed aside tissue, sternum, found a rock
the size of a plum, scooped it out
Or it could be John Sands. Ok, it could be. He doesn’t come out and says breasts, but you know…and don’t you think it very Frank O’Hara? That’s a compliment, Mr. Sands.
A Working List of Things I Will Never Tell You
By Jon Sands, Aug 28, 2009
When I said I wasn’t with another girl
the January after we fell in love for the 3rd time,
it’s because it wasn’t actual sex.
In the February that began our radio silence,
it was actual sex. I hate the tight shirts
that go below your waistline.
Not only do they make you look too young,
but then your torso is a giraffe’s neck attached to tiny legs.
I screamed at myself in the subway
for writing poems about you still.
I made a scene. I think about you almost
each morning, and roughly every five days, I still
believe you’re there.
I still masturbate to you.
When we got really bad,
I would put another coat of mop water on the floor of the bar
to make sure you were asleep when I got to my side of the bed.
You are the only person to whom I’ve lied, knowing
I was telling the truth. I miss the way your neck
wraps around my face like a cave we are both lost in.
I remember when you said being with me
is like being alone with company.
My friend Sarah wrote a poem about pink ponies.
I’m scared you’re my pink pony.
Hers is dead. It is really sad. You’re not dead.
You live in Ohio, or Washington, or Wherever.
You are a shadow my body leaves on other girls.
I have a growing queue of things I know
will make you laugh and I don’t know where to put them.
I mourn like you’re dead. If you had asked me to stay,
I would not have said no.
It would never mean yes.
OK, ok, I’ll join. Yesterday I was on the roof writing my Drink and Ebay Flash series and I was writing about this guy whose one goal in life was to date a gawky girl. The story goes on for a while and there is a small house fire (in the story) and there is a mention of soda jerks and file clerks and other rhyming occupations and then the story moves over into “I’m going to call a cop!” type drama then has this letdown section I’ll cut later and settles into sun, sea, sand and finally, finally I write this line: “She had pepper grinder bones and breasts like Socrates.”
So there, I joined the breast theme.