Monday, December 13, 2004

One Girl, One Boy, One Heckuva Week

The stars at 4:30 am are big and bright deep in the armpit of Little Rock. I'm just back from dropping off one Ms. Ussery (whose car is experiencing technical difficulties sufficient--at least in her estimation--to warrant the good pleasure of her company in MY car) at UAMS, where she spends her very early mornings these days poncing about in scrubs, waking the sick and the dying to do unspeakable things to them with metal utensils chilled overnight in the hospital freezer.

Acting as her chauffer, chef, study nazi and occasional pillow is my primary occupation this week, as she goes into grand mal panic mode in anticipation of her GREAT BIG SCARY surgery final. The sidewalk won't end there, though, for either of us, so in the cracks I'm managing to work 35 hours at The Nation's Premiere Book Monopoly, apply at the Demazette for advertorial writing, audition here and there for some voice acting/broadcasting work, and await assignment from Kaplan test prep corp., whose classrooms I candidated recently to fill. Plus hunt for an apartment so I can stop being a couch refugee. Oh yes, and tomorrow's my twenty-fifth birthday. Ye gads--how soon hath time, etc.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004


Under the shadow of the Christmas tree
A spider carefully unwrapped itself
As a small child, December twenty-first
Might make a small, illicit inquiry
Through tape and paper of his pending bounty
Then, stifling his joy or his displeasure
Repair the breach and steal away, the spider
In luminescence, splayed, seemed to consider
Its happiness a moment, then retrieved
Again its compass-pointed legs and sauntered
Along the baseboard, where its fancied likeness
To cunning children died, for there I killed it
Rising to do so from a borrowed couch
Less citizen than fellow refugee
In the apartment but for that my hostess
Would rather die herself than lodge a spider.
Do not think my ungentleness to strangers
(At Christmas yet!) springs from antipathy;
Housing in Little Rock (in any season)
Is, for the jobless, worth the warring over
And charity a bourgeois luxury
Unfit for the unlanded such as me