Plague of Grackles
This afternoon in group, Sally told you not to touch yourself down
there and everyone looked. It was like being on camera again, all those
eyeballs aimed at your pussy. You kind of liked it. You looked for the
red light. There was no red light.
Once, you were famous. The kind of fame that reaches into places like
Nebraska and Tennessee. Where you have to tip twice as much as you
would in L.A. or else they'll say you're a cheap
bitch. Not that they'd be wrong.
You've been here thirty days. Tonight they gave you a stale
cake. You joked about a file. Everyone jokes about a file. You have
fifteen more days here. Daydream about snorting cocaine off a drowsy
penis, and wish you could project the image on the wall for everyone to
see. Who would laugh, who would close their eyes, who would whimper
from the want.
Oh, how you want and want and want. They don't get that about
you. If you don't get some action soon, you're
going to have to ride your roommate's face again, and Sara
isn't even a lesbo. That's what used-to-be-famous gets you in
a place like this. You've always been a take-what-you-can-get
kind of girl.
At bedtime, you read the prayers you haven't bothered to
memorize off a greasy sheet of paper jacketed in laminate, and let it
slip from your fingers when the lights go out. You pray for patience
and gratitude and a weeklong party with clean bathrooms and locks on
the stalls. Your prayers are like grackles scattering skyward, first
one, then two, dissipating into a confusion of hues until the dark mass
rises and with one voice cries: remember me.
Jim Ruland is the author of Big Lonesome and the host of Vermin on the Mount, an L.A.-based reading
To link to this story directly: http://wigleaf.com/201101plague.htm
Detail of manipulated photo on main page courtesy
of Roy Blumenthal.
Read more of JR's work in the archive.
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