Image credit Braden Piper Photography
Green note: since a tooth is imploding in my head and I’m on massive doses of a voodoo codeine concoction, I thought this the perfect time to bring home my hallucinogenic “Zero,Zero” flash that the “Full of Crow/MiCrow” folks were gracious enough to publish in 2010 yet left in a semi-functional state…
I barged into the nasty bar bathroom, drink in hand, coming down off acid. It was one size fits all, just a dinky sink and a dirty toilet with a fucked up woman straddling it, staring at the wall. Her dull, brown hair was matted at the back of her head and straggling wild in front, like from a nightmare of a sleep. A moth-eaten tan sweater barely stretched across her kickball belly, was buttoned wrong, all bunched up under her tits. Tatty sky blue knit pants were stretched down around her ankles. My feet froze to the floor, my hand to the doorknob, my eyes to the sight of her.
The woman began slowly to swivel her head toward me on its x-axis. I was sure if her head didn’t fly off and kill me on impact, the worms that leached out of it would slap around my legs and suck me down into the piss and dirt on the floor. My traitorous eyes wouldn’t shut to hide me. I was forced to watch as her head kept turning toward me until it found my y-axis and locked there at zero,zero. I braced for a bad death.
Her face was unloaded, wiped blank of everything but dried pathways that had once held tears. She didn’t move her head from zero,zero. Only her downcast lashes lifted, dragging up with them leaden eyes so dark there were no pupils. My skin turned to gooseflesh in their wake as they rolled up the front of me in their sockets—hounded, forgiving, pitiful, all-knowing—like Jesus at the ninth hour, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?! And when they fastened on my eyes, I relaxed into them, and I heard her say in a low, cigarette voice, “I just gave birth.”
I felt my body sacrifice its weight with an infinite sigh. My drink glass slipped from my hand and bounced in the filth. Jack Daniels and ice washed over my feet and I let loose the doorknob like breaking from rehab. I moved toward the woman to embrace her as innocence, but stopped, now cold again with fear. “Where is your baby?” I whispered, suspicious.
The woman said nothing, only held me steady in the darkness of her eyes, regarding me impersonally. Then, without warning, she let me drop. And that’s when I saw it, as I fell, between her thighs…
As blameless as a baby I floated, half dead and drowning in human tissue and bloody toilet water, questioning the price, My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?!
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