Monthly Archives: May 2015

“Loretta’s Poetry Career”: Flash Fiction from DIFFICULT PEOPLE (watch your step, you never know)

Loretta’s Poetry Career

 (remember, nobody gets out alive…)

          Loretta stepped off the curb. Downtown traffic. Backwards. Not looking. She was killed immediately. The delivery truck trying to make the turn before the red-yellow still, meaning –“go” in Boston—she was gone. That quickly, poor thing. Literally, never knew what hit her. Top of her poetic prose publishing arc. Latest book a cultural breakwater—Raisins in the Looking Glass.  To those friends and admirers, a dozen or so devotees there on the corner of Crown and Sheffield…well, consensus was Loretta’s smile, triumphant after this final city reading…this backward step into eternity was as elegant a departure as typical as her sudden leaps of transcendence in her poems, stories and essays….she had reached her full powers and like a meteor arced the zenith with her glorious flame of truth and joy. As one friend from college days put it…she had no more to say on the downward slope. Her life arrowed up into infinity, going ahead, leading us always into unmapped terrain. The blow to her head knocked her soul clean free…The body surprisingly unmarked, no visible sign of trauma, stepping off into the Void, as a critic put it in Poetry Now, she achieved monistic unity with the unseen she had learned to gift us mortals ordinary, gravity bound. She was now in retrospect a kind of astral messenger, barely of this world by the end of her artistic journey.

“I tell you…” she said in her last interview, “There is progress. We do learn and truth and beauty and freedom are ours. Poetry has taught me joy because of its essential transcendence of the world of linear tedium and chronic pain. Poetry has set me free from fear.”

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TROY: Flash fiction from DIFFICULT PEOPLE

Troy

          Achilles kept saying he was sorry about the Greeks at Troy, you know, the anger and wrath thing and the death of Patroclus–that’s a damned shame he maintained…but it’s really not me. It’s just my friggin’ name!

This confusion over names was frustrating and that’s when he changed his name to Archie, but then people asked him about Archie in the comics and some stupid mutt he went around with.

So, he changed his name to Aaron…and then folks started asking him was he Jewish, or maybe wanted to scoot up the alphabet a bit further…but he pointed out they were taking Aaron as a last name, when his last name was really Petroni–and somebody noted a Jewish Italian name seemed odd, Aaron Petroni, kinda Mediterranean schizo…

So he yelled at people…and the pop name was Achilles Schizo for a few weeks until he picked Carling Black Label at a Friday nite beer bust, and shortened it to Carl Black–

–and went to bed in a drunken stupor in a back bedroom down at the Cape and awoke in the sweaty arms of a blonde from Providence, Rhode Island, who said her name was Helen of Troy and was he her Hector or maybe that sleazy cute Paris and he said no he was Achilles and showed her his Trojan horse and stormed the streets of Troy and took Helen totally, like totally by surprise…

#fiction DIFFICULT PEOPLE 172 EROTIC flash fictions, Zen tales revealing destiny-imbued moments. Adult readers only. http://amzn.to/Po18v7

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Squeeky-Matisse, painting to a loving playful cat, by Laurie Steinmeyer (acrylic)

For out dear loving cat as playful as Matisse.

For out dear loving cat as playful as Matisse.

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“Once in a Blue Moon”, (acrylic) Laurie Steinmeyer (abstract expressionist/ colorist)

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Once in A Blue Moon

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“Two Wild and Crazy Friends,” (Acrylic Painting), Laurie Steinmeyer, Abstract Expressionist

Laurie Steinmeyer Abstract Expressionist

Laurie Steinmeyer
Abstract Expressionist

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A few quotes from an early Hippie and “difficult person”: Henry Miller, Tropic of Cancer

Quotes from Miller’s famous banned, radical break-out book in his ex-pat down-and-out years in 1930s Paris as the Depression and the World War 2 loomed over an angry Europe and the world; for quite some time Miller was absolutely broke and actually starving in Paris; he finally discovered a clever way of surviving by making a dinner date with employed friends for one day a week on a regular basis. Eventually he found writing and editing jobs to carry him through this extreme, marginal bohemian period.

—“This is not a book in the ordinary sense of the word. No, this is a prolonged insult, a gob of spit in the face of art, a kick in the pants to God, Man, Destiny, Time, Love, Beauty… what you will. ”

—“I need to be alone. I need to ponder my shame and my despair in seclusion; I need the sunshine and the paving stones of the streets without companions, without conversation, face to face with myself, with only the music of my heart for company.”

—“Everybody says sex is obscene. The only true obscenity is war.”

—“And for that one moment of freedom you have to listen to all that love crap… it drive me nuts sometimes… I want to kick them out immediately… I do now and then. But that doesn’t keep them away. They like it, in fact. The less you notice them the more they chase after you. There’s something perverse about women… they’re all masochists at heart.”

—“I have found God, but he is insufficient.”

—“Do anything, but let it produce joy. Do anything, but let it yield ecstasy.”

—“I’ve lived out my melancholy youth. I don’t give a fuck anymore what’s behind me, or what’s ahead of me. I’m healthy. Incurably healthy. No sorrows, no regrets. No past, no future. The present is enough for me. Day by day. Today!”

—“I’m a bit retarded, like most Americans.”

—“I made up my mind that I would hold onto nothing, that I would expect nothing.”

—“An artist is always alone – if he is an artist. No, what the artist needs is loneliness.”

—“Paris is like a whore. From a distance she seems ravishing, you can’t wait until you have her in your arms. And five minutes later you feel empty, disgusted with yourself. You feel tricked.”

—“Side by side with the human race there runs another race of beings, the inhuman ones, the race of artists who, goaded by unknown impulses, take the lifeless mass of humanity and by the fever and ferment with which they imbue it turn this soggy dough into bread and the bread into wine and the wine into song.”

Tropic of Cancer, available on Amazon at link below:

http://www.amazon.com/Tropic-Cancer-Paperback-Miller-Author/dp/B002VH3AMK/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1432652632&sr=1-1&keywords=tropic+of+cancer

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“Errands”: Flash Fiction from DIFFICULT PEOPLE (for busy list makers out there)

Errands

It was all worth it. The doing of so much. You hit the floor running and ahead of you lay an infinite list. Of course, you don’t tighten up and die over that. Hell no! You pick two or three gotta-get-dones and you work ‘em for the day. I’m the oldest. I like getting shit done. At the end of the day, I put these big red checks on my to-do list. I take a deep breath and thank my stars for letting me be so damned productive. Imagine the pride you have getting a package in the mail. All the steps…need I elaborate…down to the interaction with the postal clerk’s forced smile. Or the sense you’re slipping through time at the traffic stop and the woman pushing the baby carriage is now fifty feet further down the block and the space-time she consumed in her own life has happened in a blink as your mind turned inward to some other item on the list, like which credit card to use at the appliance store, what route was most efficient and where to park to minimize. You know the routine…and your mind comes back to the traffic light…waiting for the “walk” yellow flashing light to end and you wonder if the order of all this is a kind of tyranny of interlocked forms…and we only see a few frames out of the infinite choices…and you realize, still waiting with the giant SUV breathing on your rear bumper…a tiny woman’s new shoe slipping off the brake pedal…you think this could all be an absurd busy-ness, necessary but finally empty of value…metaphysically…and thank the cosmos the light turns green, and you get to lurch into the intersection driven and flawed by all these quotidian desires!

P.S. (note: It’s Memorial Day: the Post office is closed! Sit still, stay off the roads! RELAX!)

#fiction DIFFICULT PEOPLE 172 EROTIC flash fictions, Zen tales revealing destiny-imbued moments. Adult readers only. http://amzn.to/Po18v7

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