April 8, 2018

I caught you smiling, half asleep in the dark. I leaned in a little closer to be sure and it turned into a giggle. You rolled into my arms still half asleep, still giggling, breathed lazily into my shirt, and I forgot all about how you kicked me really hard in the face twice while sleeping next to me the night before.

Your twitchy little fingers smell like buttery bread again. I reflect on the day and think about how you’re turning into a little human right before my very eyes.

Henna Part 2

After waiting about a day and a half for the dye to release, I tested the henna on my hand, and it stained an orange color, as the instructions had indicated. I used an applicator bottle that came with different sized tips, and after experimenting with the thickness and speed of the dye coming out of the tip, I initially chose one of the thicker applicator options, but felt the lines were still too fine, so I went for an even thicker one and from there just went for it freehand. Maybe a little risky, but it’s temporary and all for fun anyway.

 

The paint dried a dark greenish black color and looked really cool, but once the dried henna peeled off (all over the house, every time I bent over or brushed by something, oops), the end result was pretty light. To contrast, the henna I did on my hand was much darker and noticeable, perhaps because the skin on the palms is thinner/softer?

  

Denny’s

she was the straying lover smoking triple purple haze across his street, while watching the lights in his window. a heavy euphoria weighing down the eyelids, limbs, and the air until the night wore thin and she was aware only of shadows converging before a shuddering luminescence, forced to confess to existence, imaginary rapists coming in and out of the dark in handsome form, with mundane names

she took the corner booth at Denny’s, and suffered crucifixion among tattooed waitresses and tired, leering men, and her friend asked

are the holes in the pages symbolism for Tuesday

surveying the diner, a neon box of discord, she said no, just enclosing myself in blank pages pressed between hard covers until springtime erases this momentary solitude

as the sun arose again she noticed the remnants of the day were splattered on the restaurant walls

The Post Office by Charles Bukowski

I recently read The Post Office by Charles Bukowski, and I haven’t decided whether it is an ingenious work of dark comedy or an over-hyped hipster anthem (like Kerouac’s On The Road – don’t kill me).

The Post Office is narrated by Henry Chinaski, a drunk degenerate who works at the United States Postal Service as a carrier. He is constantly hungover at work, gambles too much in his spare time, dates flaky women, and spends the rest of his time drinking. His efforts in his employment as a mail carrier are characterized by his insistence on undertaking the bare minimum work and pushing the patience of his supervisors to the limit without getting fired.

He marries a wealthy woman 13 years younger at one point, but she divorces him because he is not enough of a gentleman, and released her parakeets into the wild because they were making too much noise and disrupted his sleep. He then knocks up an aging hippie, and is largely ambivalent when she leaves him and takes their child away to New Mexico. Chinaski is sometimes an abominable human being; in other instances one senses he is somewhat redeemable.

The books is humorous at times, and a bit dark when it comes to the obvious ennui and monotony of postal work and the people who endure it for decades. I enjoyed it, but did not find it particularly enlightening or compelling. The language is raw and mostly transparent, and I guess there was nothing in particularly that gripped me. I kept wondering where this whole thing was going, and never figured it out.

“Suddenly I had to sit down and shit. It was a good hot one.”

Notably, Bukowski was investigated and harassed by the FBI, possibly in connection with some of the revelations contained in this novel.  According to Bukowski.net, “In 1968 various branches of the U.S. government performed an investigation into the background of civil servant Charles Bukowski…Apparently the FBI and the Postal Service took offense to some of his writing…and had their ‘informants’ report Bukowski to higher-ups in the post office.”

Surely, Bukowski did the United States Postal Service no favors, and provided a special insight into the nonsensical bureaucracy and incompetence involved (those are some of the funniest parts). Even so, I don’t think the book remotely did such an injustice to warrant an FBI investigation, so I guess it just goes to show the FBI has always been full of a bunch of paranoid, meddling assholes.

So the guy shows up hungover at work constantly. But so did I, when I was 19 years old, as opposed to 36. At least he had his wrinkled carrier uniform on; I showed up at work hungover in the dress I wore out the night before. Perhaps this book is a glimpse of how my life would be at age 40 had I not abandoned my hedonistic ways.