Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Before dawn, the harsh slam of the back bedroom door jolted my brain. The landlady's guest crashed through the bathroom like a lumbering giant. My hair shot straight up and then curled tight against my skull as my eyes narrowed.

I shot laser beams from my eyes through layers of sheetrock and wood and insulation and house-stuffs. The beam erupted through the medicine cabinet on the other side of the wall. Pills and q-tips and nail-trimming devices and glass exploded outward. Her gaze jerked upward in alarm. Too late to recall the beam, I blasted her through the toilet to the outside of the house.

Her panties held their position wrapped around her ankles as she flew backward in slowing time through the outer wall. The magazine she read flew from her hands and bits of ceramic from the demolished toilet reflected the outer sunlight creating a brilliant white halo about her. Somehow her modesty was preserved during all of this. My instantaneous guilt at behaving thus toward a guest and rather a kind person kept her privates in shadow so that they might not be subject to public review. Her dressing gown fluttered downward to conceal her nudity as she accelerated out of the house.

I heard her mosey toward the downstairs kitchen. Coughs and chair scraping echoed through the house. Bits of ceramic dust fell around her coffee and onto the morning paper. She swept it into the crease so that she might still read the headline:


The driver was my friend Tomas who had consumed a drink some hours prior, and the other had been I fading into half-sleep as we drove home from late dinner at a friend's house. My left eye wandered open from time to time and wobbled about underneath my shuddering eyelid. But the instant I attempted to waken, I happened to see that streak of light whooshing out of sight past the upper left corner of the windshield.

Tomas asked me "did you see that comet?" I only spoke a simple "yeah" - the sound of it spinning outward and landing in a breath. Inwardly, I questioned the reality of this situation and the chance that I would waken to even see such a thing. That we would both see it. That it could possibly really be a comet instead of just a weird bird - some strange white thing that flew across the field of our vision; some creature or portent.