The agent of God’s wrath rolls a ginger candy from one side of his mouth to the other and steps out through the sliding doors just before they close. He is not wearing gloves or sunglasses. You could not pick him out of a lineup. The briefcase that he placed with such great gentleness between the feet of several other passengers in the over-crowded subway car is an entirely ordinary briefcase; there is nothing to suggest that it might be capable of opening & opening & opening. He is one of a half million souls who will return another day, God willing, & will fold his newspaper carefully in order to avoid intruding upon his seat mates, reading the sports pages, the celebrity gossip, the updates on the manhunt for those who forfeit every claim to continued membership in the human race. This morning, he takes the stairs up to the street. A woman going the other way gives him the oddest look.

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Dave Bonta (bio) crowd-sources his problems by following his gut, which he shares with 100 trillion of his closest microbial friends — a close-knit, symbiotic community comprising several thousand species of bacteria, fungi, and protozoa. In a similarly collaborative fashion, all of Dave’s writing is available for reuse and creative remix under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. For attribution in printed material, his name (Dave Bonta) will suffice, but for web use, please link back to the original. Contact him for permission to waive the “share alike” provision (e.g. for use in a conventionally copyrighted work).

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