Saturday, January 23, 2010

5 - the mouthpiece

for previous episode click here

to begin at the beginning click here

sam kennedy was exasperated
in his experience he had seen a lot
nothing surprised him
confusion rarely entered his brain
eddie, though, was something else

he had approached sam about a month ago
entering his office by way of the service elevator

he had a proposition for sam
as always, sam listened
doubtless talk was cheap

regarding loyalty, sam had an open mind
eddie understood sam
at first, sam expressed surprise
loyalty is sacred, he insisted
i can't just blow kenny off
zero tolerance for rats is a law of nature
eddie just smiled
doubt never entered his mind

kenny was on the slide
events were conspiring against him
nothing he could do would matter
nothing he could say either
yes, thought eddie, i have him

when the first string is pulled
all the puppets look up
so long as he string is tight

fine, thought sam
out of all the guys he could have propositioned
lucky he chose me
little does he suspect
once he thinks he has me
when he's ready to spring the trap
i will be long gone
never to be seen again
goodbye, eddie!

ha ha ha
it was nice knowing you
mighty nice indeed

just then sam's phone rang
oh oh he thought
he picked it up
nick was on the other end
nothing he said made much sense
yes, yes. sam agreed

how come nick was calling?
always before it had been kenny himself
denoting caution

but now, was kenny getting careless?
everything pointed that way
especially now
nick was babbling away

politely, sam interrupted
right now were not a good idea
perhaps later
let's get together
eddie is the problem, yes
except when he isn't, of course
even when he seems to be quiet
doesn't this guy ever get to the point?

i wholeheartedly agree
no doubt

he finally got rid of nick
i need a thick porterhouse steak, he thought
so what if the doctor said no more

mulling the implications of nick's call
in the depths of his treacherous brain
notwithstanding his natural caution
decision time was reached

how had it come to this?
eddie had been nothing

was it destiny?
all sam knew was he wanted to pick a winner
so much for loyalty

continuing his train of thought
on his way out the door
nodding to the cleaning lady
flashing a big smile
under his restlessly probing eyes
sam never considered
eddie's true motives
decided long ago

6. ike

Monday, January 11, 2010

4 - mickey

for previous episode click here

to begin at the beginning click here

on mickey's ninety-third birthday the boys sent him a cake
nurse jones delivered it

three orderlies sang
happy birthday to you
everybody had a good time

outside the birds were making noise
too much noise
happy birthday was over
eternity beckoned to mickey
remorse smiled uncertainly at him

he ignored both of them
as the hours ticked away
nothing to worry about
despair was for chumps

mickey had plans
and plans for his plans
yes he did
behind his wraparound shades
evil schemes abounded

harry miller the haberdasher
everything mickey knew he learned from harry

down in the old neighborhood
in the seventeenth ward
did he learn his lessons or what?
no one learned better
things were good then

under mickey's placid exterior
plots spread like kudzu

'i need to sweep under the bed"
nurse jones was back

turning his wheelchair to the window
humming an old favorite tune
eyeing nurse jones surreptitiously

somnolescence overtook mickey
kicking cake crumbs under his wheelchair
yawning like a crocodile

but tomorrow
i'll get started he thought
revenge flickered like a volcano
determination like flowing lava
see if i don't come back

as mickey flopped forward in his chair
nurse jones did her job
duty was her life

plots and plans were alien to her
lately though she had been thinking
and certain thoughts
never before acknowledged
entered her brain
softly as summer rain

why was she here?
every day was the same
really what was the point?
explanations were lacking

feeling faint, she paused
looking out the window
yellow leaves lay under the bare trees
i'm like those trees, she thought
nobody notices me
guess i am getting old

turbulence roiled mickey's brain
a master plan formed
kerosene-like it flamed
in an instant it was gone
never to return
gone forever

ashes blew down the street

packing a shotgun
al brown stood on the running board
in the window of uncle dave's pawn shop
return to sender

open your eyes
form a plan

peeking at her
as she finished making his bed
nurse jones filled his vision
there was a woman
she was the key

"oh, nurse," mickey called
falling halfway out of his chair
fumbling for his brain

too late -
his brain disintegrated
empty hopes dispersed into nothingness

all over
it was the end

but his body remained
strong hands gripped it
"i've got him" nurse jones called
dr wilson appeared
equanimous as always

he had almost liked mickey
in a strange way
suspecting him of terrible crimes

but he was a patient
egregious though his deeds may have been
dr wilson sighed

jones had things under control
orderlies appeared
happy birthday was over
now back to work
never a quiet moment
yet they carried on

paperwork paperwork
until the cows came home
too bad about the cows

they never came home
how sad
eternity beckoned to them too

outside the birds and bugs were quiet
none of them cared about mickey

5. the mouthpiece