Camioneta

21 Jul

This short piece lives now at Fictionaut. I wrote this originally for this site many many years ago (2005ish?) and it was much shorter, maybe 300 words. (It’s 633 now.) It’s a sort of “memoir” but not really. It’s fiction. But then again, isn’t all memoir fiction. Isn’t it?

I was lucky enough to tour Romania by car at a very young age, before I left it for good in my 10th year alive. It’s a beautiful country geographically. Although I haven’t been back since I left at the very end of 1979, it’s definitely a land that needs to be seen by more people. A simple Google image search will yield wonders; it’s a cross between Germanic influence, Greek influence, Roman influence, and Middle Eastern motifs…even in cuisine…and better yet, even in the salaciousness of our curse words.

To this day what strikes me about having briefly lived in a communist regime were the contradictions. We were an atheist country, yet it was littered with Orthodox monasteries. Priests were informers, yet people still went to church and lit candles. Maybe they wanted to be heard. The Marxist doctrine was about sharing, yet everyone fought like mad to survive…everyone for himself. Everyone (or nearly everyone) informed on one another. Sons on fathers, fathers on sons. People lined up  in queues and had no idea what stores were selling. Usually it was nothing. Or they ran out of whatever little they had. But citizens lined up for that, too. Nothing was often worth waiting in long lines for.

One day I’ll go back; I owe it to my daughter and my wife. Before I get to east Europe, though, there are many many other countries I’d like to see. And therein lies the problem. My country’s geographic location puts it at a disadvantage with me.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the piece.

Been a Long Time, Been a Long Time, Been a Long, Lonely, Lonely, Lonely, Lonely, Lonely Time or The Longest Title of a Post on this Blog

13 Jul

Tons of events have transpired since I last posted here. But I won’t talk about them because they’re mostly personal. Trips have been taken but not for pleasure. Business has transpired. Life has rolled by. I have new aches and pains. My new favorite song is Eminence Front. My favorite bands are this and this. I’m still struggling to place The Sun Eaters with a publisher. I have devised a great way to make an existing crash cymbal sound like a trash can (place a smaller cymbal directly on top of it), thus saving me at least three-and-a-half C-notes. I’ve tuned my kit a bit lower than the usual jazz kits, but I like it that way, so stuff it purists.

Mostly the good news is that I’ve begun to write again. My second novel is tentatively called The Long, Oil-Stained Life of Rosetti. The catch this time is that I’m writing it by hand and on paper. I can’t spend too much energy fudging with saving it on different devices or in different clouds or mediums. Regarding this issue, a writer named Karen Guzman shot a few questions out my way about this (GASP!) low-tech approach, and I tried to answer as best I could.

You might like it. It’s here.

Other than that, I got nothin’. Summer days are hot and long and I’m dreaming of Iceland and Italy with a detour through Toronto. One day I’ll win the lottery and take up residence on the QE2. It’s still sailing, innit?

Los Mochis

29 May

one thing we still manufacture locally
as well as globally
is barbarism
bolaño would be proud
last week in the city of Los Mochis
in Sinaloa
police found the dismembered body of a man
whose face had been skinned off
and stitched
onto a soccer ball

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