Up Us

I’m driving this piece of shit rental car while my baby sits in the shop getting her dents hammered out.  I won’t name this crappy car because it’s popular, and I wouldn’t want friends who might own one to be offended.  I mean my head touches the roof, so there’s this constant rubbing sensation. The gas pedal is about as responsive as a dead mongoose.  You step on it, and it’s maybe a minute and a half before the engine responds.  Hold on then ’cause it’s a lurch forward like liftoff from Cape Canaveral, hitting how many Gs, I have no idea.

So we sit down for coffee, and I can tell by your face that you’re down.  Way down

The first thing you say is that there’s been another mass killing, and of course my stupid car problems fade fast into the distance.  It’s a nightmare.

You stutter out the statistics, your despair at the regularity of these murders.  I support you with dumb head nods, not knowing what to say.

You sip your coffee and fall to silence as if the weight of the world has been placed on your tongue, one of those globes, a glottal stop, the words of a soothsayer pinched tight.

You’re the one who always reminds me there is a price to be paid for silence, and I know, for you, it’s much more than just these never-ending pointless deaths.  I wait, silent too, watch your eyes water, and you begin to speak again.

“Welcome to the world of cats,” you say, heated. “Where songs of righteousness trill very few tongues, I can tell you.  You know, you give the breed a bad name, your fake meows, your offkey tweets, tone-deaf imitations of birds you’d like to kill.  Believe it, your shrill squeeks are falling more and more on deaf ears, Mister.”

We both sip our coffee.  You continue.

“All you uncool poser cats play in your crystal towers, or stroll daily in your manicured fields, like Nero burning down a mighty country, frolicking in green pastures — While, sadly, we citizens only fiddle.

“But we’re gonna stand up, I hope, begin to light the matches to singe your hair, that odd burning crematory air.  Then we’ll see in your furrowing brow how everything is rotten for your concern.

“We’ll come to watch you, gather together not to praise you, but in anticipation the call to take off your head, see the setting orange sun rolling down for the final time, then even your once well-wishers turning bone dry against the flames.

“Why do we have to keep waking up to cry over spilt milk, to see daily how the barn doors are swung wide open and all the horses are scattering through the countryside?

“We can’t sit here mumbling, stunningly helpless.  We gotta rise up, Lanning.  Force him to touch his finger to his nose, oh how he stumbles on his lines, the glass of power was too large for his little hands and too heady for a brain that dead.

“Yeah, Mister, welcome to the world of cats.  You will not do well here.  You will be clawed, joyfully, and very soon we will nose you coming up the stairs or anywhere.  The stench is already heavy, but an even thicker cloud of choking fumes would be all the more welcome, enlivening us as we bury you for a little worm that’s looking for its turn.

“And then,” you lift your coffee cup and we toast, “the air will clear and the party will begin.”

I sip my coffee and marvel at your ability to speak this way.  You smile now, ask me what’s new with me.  I can’t think of anything to say except, “I’m ready for that party to begin.”

* * * * *

Today’s word is


Use it in a sentence or two or more, then post it in the comments below. I’d love to read what you write : ) Happy Wednesday / Pōʻakolu.

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