heaven or

8 Dec

coming down the hill, off a the Hoover Dam with Westerberg’s “Skyline” on the speakers, it’s friday evening. rush hour. and Vegas is ahead, a lit saucer of savagery in the middle of the heartless desert. i got no money to drop on slots or tables. just passing thru. up from kingman and down to L.A. i know. a weird detour. a parabolic trip through hell’s waiting room, wearing shorts in forty degree weather and blasting the replacements. and all them bright lights. all them big cities.
where ya stayin?
the comfort inn.
it’s awright. they got poker machines there too and they’ll give ya a free seven-un-seven if ya play fer half hour.
where i’m headed is home to El Toro. southern california is under water from the march rains. in the fall it burns, in the spring it floods. when i was little we used to ride our bikes into Ojai in september and watch the valley smoke out the movie stars. chong lived there. had his home incinerated once. yea, that chong. we picked small oranges and juiced them in the morning. no lines connect points.

i spend the night in my room heating chef boyardee on a portable electric burner. i eat it straight out of the small saucepan with a mini spoon. the tomato taste mixes in with copper and bourbon from a paper cup, and on the tube Jerry Tarkanian bites down on a towel as UNLV falls into the amoeba defense and tops such-and-such in the ncaa tournament. it all gathers and blurs into a meaningless snowball of information and geography. petrified wood. meteor craters. canyons. diverted rivers. joshua trees. stray dogs. rodeo drive.

nothing connected properly.


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