Saturday, October 13, 2012

As it Gets Colder

Most of the months we were together were cold. Sometimes freezing. And we drove many places to break up the monotony without numbing our toes on a walk. I liked sitting in the cab with the defroster blowing hot air into the car and onto the windshield as you, in a muted brown, chunky coat, brushed and scraped the snow off and waved at me to make me smile. You looked so responsible and manly, like when you wore a suit and told me about backhanding that kid in middle school—fifties manly—the kind of man who works hard and demands respect from others. You’d get back in the car, making “brr” noises, the kind where you blow out air and shake your cheeks to get some feeling back; it involves a lot of “huffing”, then you’d rub your hands together for a minute or two or give them to me to rub since I was already warming up.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Asleep at all Hours continued

"Okay. Okay. What if. . .what if he was so fast, nobody ever got a hit in on 'im? He could win that way. I've seen him move. He's fast. I just don't think it's right to tell people they should give up on their dreams. And Jake's such a good person." -Karen Scott


"I've already said it once. Un. Realistic." -Paul Dempsy


"Hello, I'm. . .Jake Krantz. Uh, I want to be a boxer. I'm not sure why you're asking me this. . .."

"I want to be a boxer. . .but. . .I have my defense. Are you sure? This is embarrassing. Aren't there other people you could ask about this stuff? I don't see what makes me so interesting. I want to be a boxer and I fall asleep to defend myself. It usually works, okay? Can you get this stuff off me? I have things to do."


On a Friday after school Jake approached Mr. Dempsy with a proposition: "Hey, Paul, wanna go to the gym and spar with me later?"

Paul's response was calm, but less than positive. "Jake, man, can we talk about that?"

Mr. Krantz laughed to himself in response to his sixteen year old friend and answered, "What? You sound like you're about to break up with me."   Jake's demeanor changed when he saw the unamused expression of Mr. Dempsy he then fumbled out a worried response. "Uh. . .what's up, man?"

Paul's answer was, "Man, I don't see the point. You're not gonna be a boxer. You just aren't. . .you just don't. . .you know what I mean?"

"You know, I just remembered that Karen wanted me to help her can some apples. Forget I asked. It's cool, man, don't worry about it." Mr. Krantz's cheeks visibly reddened before slapping his pal on the back and reassuring Mr. Dempsy with a half hearted, "No worries."

Monday, September 17, 2012

Asleep at all Hours

"Jake, come on, man, wake up."


"Well, yeah, it's his dream to become a professional boxer, but. . .every time he's threatened he goes to sleep. I don't want to put down his dreams, you know. . .but he has to know it isn't gonna work out, right?" -Paul Dempsy


Jake has a girlfriend who fully supports his dream. Karen, the aspiring boxer's girlfriend, age fifteen, enjoys canning apples as her hobby.

"Why wouldn't he be able to do it? If a cripple can win a marathon, why can't he win a boxing match? I mean, I guess it would be hard if he couldn't stay awake, but he might get a K.O. on his first punch, right?! Then he'd win!" -Karen Scott


On a cloudy afternoon Jake Krantz and his friend Paul Dempsy were assaulted on their way home from the local library. The assault took place around 2:30 P.M. on a Saturday in November. The perpetrators were looking to confiscate the young boys' wallets. Mr. Dempsy gave the perpetrators his wallet at the first sign of trouble, but the attackers, presumably after a good time more than money physically assaulted the two boys despite already attaining their prize. The first strike directed at Mr. Krantz's abdominal region resulted in the boy's capitulation to sleep. The teenage assailants, upon seeing the boy fall to the ground, fled the scene in panic. Mr. Dempsy cleaned the blood from his battered face and moved to check on his friend, making sure not to touch, sixteen year old, Jake to be sure the boy would not shut down further. Paul attempted to awaken his friend with the words, "Jake, come on, man, wake up."

And People I knew were in the Hall

And People I knew were in the Hall
You and I were
bathing in a white
tub with green claws holding
it up. Your pants
were still on
because you’re a little self
conscious about showing
your legs to me.
I was naked,
and we were watching a movie
on the TV across from our tub.

Kissing your jawbone,
“My mom will be mad
if she walks in on us.”
You smiled with the smile
you use in devilish pleasure
rather than out of joy.
I focused on tiny, dark hairs
above your lips, and you told me,
“We’re fine.”

I got out and started

Water sloshed from the basin
and you were out.
“Oh, hey,
I’m gonna take off.”
I became a cape
around your neck.
“You can’t leave me
And you were already
in the doorway when you said,
“But I like England;
it smells like Spain.”

Night Melting

Night Melting
Remembering real life
exists coincides with feeling
the lemony soreness
of my shoulders. Realizing
I never opened a door—one
with little turquoise
gems and gold paint
incorporated lavishly into the framework—
that led me to a stair-filled
world of demons, is exactly
the same as finding
a miniscule mound of gunk
piled in the corner of my eyes. I’m always
trading love-filled ship rides
for bright lights and bad breath.

Something Much Needed

I dreamt about my grand—
father last night.
He trembled oddly
as he hugged me. I thought
perhaps it was because
of his age, but
he seemed no older
than I ever knew him.
He was still sturdy,
round and wearing
I’d call him Grandpa
Malcolm if I had another
who shared his title;
just like I had a Grandma
Marie and
Grandma June.
But there was never a reason
to do the same for him.
And when he died
I stopped talking
about him altogether.
Not that I spoke
of him much in his
But I’m certain
there’s something bringing
him back. Because I
never knew him, never
received his sagely
advice, I must have
called for his hug
in some way.

I've Never Heard a Heart as Strange as Yours

I’ve Never Heard a Heart as Strange as Yours
In truth, those are little red
marks of love.
Or passion. Maybe just
lust. All those tingly bits
of abstraction. Stars in the sky,
right? Rose petals
and all that. . .
But it looks like my neck
was mauled by
wolves with a vendetta
and yellow teeth.
I’m certain God
has cursed us. I think
He does it in His
free time. Bored,
so why not curse
those dear children?
He’s given you a milk jug heart
that emptied out long ago
and keeps pumping
with the violence of
the hungry wolves
living in my fingertips.
I’m not sure
what He’s done to me
but it has something
to do with everything underneath.
The houses and cold nights
bubbling inside my skin
and the pancake of colors
behind my eyes. The ones
I see overlapping whatever
might be in front of me.