The locksmith’s daughter had beautiful bones that cast long shadows on her skin. She wanted to be thin. Cell phones were dwindling; why not those who pressed the sleek clamshells against an ear, as if to listen to the ocean’s test signal? She fasted, draped in hipster black, and learned to love desire for itself. Her hips grew sharp as blades of grass, and she trembled in the least breeze.
The doctor’s son wanted to be tough; he made the team. But then he began hearing voices, and thought it was the coach. They said that this was Olympus and the gods were near — take off your clothes. He took his chew out of his cheek and threw it on the ground. “To hell with you!” he shouted, and walked off the field with the scorched outline of his former life trailing behind.
They crossed paths on the cemetery hill, and stood smiling wanly at each other.
“Eat something, you stupid goth bitch.”
“Grow a brain, you dumb jock.”
But that isn’t what they said. And a good thing, too, considering how soon they would be sharing a bottle, a needle, a pipe.
“I can’t get the coach out of my head.”
“I know exactly what you mean.”
She didn’t know, of course — she had no idea — but it was, as in mathematics, a serviceable assumption to begin on.
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).