R e v o l v e r

A person not only ticks, he also chimes and strikes the hour, falls and breaks and has to be put back together again, and sometimes stops like an electric clock in a thunderstorm.

-James Thurber

The electric clock on the dresser was blinking the incorrect time of 12:39. The Shenandoahs were pale and grief washed.

At night his blanket and his brother’s lit up with faint blue strands, dancing angels, one night they were so thick his brother threw off the quilt in disgust and ran down the dark hallway and splashed cold water on his face as the wind howled and lashed at the log cabin’s windows. Bright blinks of industrial St. Elmo’s Fire, chartreuse birds on the winds of the underworld.

They played boggle and cranium and the princess and the dragon as the lights flickered on and off and the fire crackled. Rose-edged snowshoes hung on the wall. Lydia Mountain Cabins, $250 a night. The hot tub steamed and he and his brother’s hair froze in the roaring windy night. He dared not tell his family of the cosmic plot against him. The Year of the White Metal Tiger.

The snow slid off the grand gullies. The winds were fearsome, the accumulation thin. The air went sideways. Nothing stuck.

He stared into the bathroom mirror. As Harvey Pekar would say, Now There’s A Familiar Disappointment.

F o o d . . .