Hand-Built Books – K. Shawn Edgar 2015
Rubberized Jackdaw & The Fountain of Peninsula:
A Writer’s Life
This process is difficult. The kind of difficult that makes over-eaters and alcohol drinkers, or obsessive housecleaners. Those actions are easier than staying in the chair and writing. The mind can turn away at the slightest entertainment. And will. It will be turned, twisted, and tulip-infused. The lights will seem too bright, the room too cold, and the sunshine outside too invitingly warm. Resist these distractions. Focus your eye-beams on your fingertip grenades. Write hard.
But first, to breakfast.
There are a lot of birds lately. Huge Crows, Poorwills, and Tyrant Flycatchers. More than I can remember. Yesterday. Or maybe it started last week with a cloud of them pouring over the reservoir walls, high up and then low over its sloping turf sides. A swirly, carnival-curly living cloud—all flapping their wings and yet, in a way, none seemed to be flapping at all.
I begin. Again. But this time it’s personal. (No need to research and debate; yes, it’s a reference to that action movie.) The ball-and-chain pull of pop culture gets even with me, jerking me back, whenever I try to stray. Some of these referential brands are so deep they seem like memories of summer birthday parties or foreign explorations, like the time you spent six days walking from London to Holy Island; sleeping on the street in recessed doorways or in the fetal position under a bird blind near the sand dunes, a plate of peas as your dinner at The Ship & Cove. Yesterday. Or five years ago. Or ten years ago. Or whenever.
Last night—right after a dream ending with me saying, “Well, gentlemen. Emus….”—I had this thought: The name of my blog is Pull of the Sun. If it were instead, Pole of the Son, it would have to be some kind of porn site involving incest. Or, if it were Poll of the Son, it might be a generational type political blog, like something Ron and Rand Paul would endorse.
In a particular area in Washington State, the local police are running a new program they call Handguns for Meth. Out of respect for the people who live there, let’s refer to this area as Peninsula. The new program works like this: Any citizen, without fear of legal action, can bring in their meth and receive a shiny handgun in exchange. It doesn’t matter how much meth; could be one ounce or fifty pounds, you still walk away with a shiny handgun. Now this, on its surface, is brilliant on two levels. Firstly, the meth can be resold in Tacoma to bring in a whole lot of cash for the state. Secondly, it gives the police a way to deal with all those confiscated handguns that have been piling up at the station. You know, it’s like reduce, reuse, recycle. Right? Hints of the New World Order goals. Debase, reduce.
After the brief—and quite pleasant—plague of birds the rain’s falling day after day. Dark rain, from clouds the color of old motor oil that produce an endless pounding of heavy lead confetti. The primordial piss of a pack of angry gods. Predawn gods. Blind, cave dwelling gods, on a time-without-measure dunk, who stink of some ancient rum booze. Thoughtless, antisocial gods like the ugly masters of Wall Street, only so far beyond recognizing that there’s something for their heavy-metal piss to fall upon they believe this endless release is helpful and joyous. Pigeon poo. This rain! Bring back the Crows and the Goatsuckers.
Crepuscular, I begin twinkling. Tandy has the dark tropic marmalade of a second son’s second son. So what? Bitter oranges. The sun is setting. And daughters are on the rise! I must break for dinner, and I will slowly serenade the sauce as the pasta boils in salty water.
I percolate the coffee. Sickness always revives me; my teaming masses need a trillion foes to fight. With every cough, my immune system loves to bounce back from a Pearl Harbor style pounding. Rapturous explosions of my old cells dying bring forth the new. Decline, revive. Decline, revive.
I begin. Again. My mother arranged thick, flat stones in rows across the lowest part of the trail where rainwater pooled after winter storms. She wanted to encourage foot traffic to the fishing ponds. They were stocked ponds, brimming with rainbow trout. She charged $25 per hour. Some with nimble fingers and quick reactions haled in a worthwhile number of fish, while others overpaid to stand around and swat bugs. To maintain this duality, mother also collected (read trapped) various types: flies, gnats, mosquitoes, and the occasional bunch Buffalo Treehoppers from around the state and introduced them to the ponds. This way, winners and losers of the fishing wars would have something to do and even gain a sense of satisfying accomplishment. That was my mother. And, as I’ve often told friends, one could safely say she was a true businesswoman, entertainer, and self-taught Entomologist as well as a determined smuggler.
K. Shawn Edgar | Midnight Writer | Hedge Goon | Goth Goatsucker