To Be Touched with Love’s Last Finger

Her face was a like a star burning out and falling into the ocean of a poisonous planet. She peeked from the upstairs window and I caught a glimpse, one brief vision, and the shadows of her eyes burnt into mine forever. I began beating the hedges with a sword and they bled and I gathered this violent ichor into the golden bowl I had brought for her mother and set it upon her doorstep. Dogs, rats, cardinals, humans, cats and lizards: I gathered these from the neighboring yards and set to painting them with the blood, demanding, “Twirl, fiends, twirl!” knowing that they would never twirl hard enough to pull her from her bedroom and into my arms.

Her father appeared, dressed in silver, smoking a pipe from which purple fumes floated into the sky. The smoke formed his words and his words spelled, “Duty before Honor.” My sword found his lungs (first the left, then the right) and the smoke that spilled out was as black as grave water. His screams set off a car alarm a few houses down. And yet, she did not appear to me, though she must have heard the racket I had dedicated to her velvet ears. Her father’s head came off nicely and with it I knocked upon the door. Impatient, I knocked again. A third time I knocked and this time rudely and at length.

Her mother, an ancient crone with fish eyes and a formless tail where her legs should have been, opened the door with an umbrella, which she pointed at me as if it were a gun. “This is a gun,” she proclaimed, and opened its canopy menacingly. Her bad luck came immediately in the form of my sword with which I cut from her her hands. The umbrella, no longer a gun if it ever were, fell to the carpet. She did not bleed, but merely stood staring, mouth agape, stunned that I would be so up front about my desires. I pointed my sword at her heart and motioned her towards the cellar.

When she had retreated into the sub-levels, I began my ascent of the stairs. For five days I climbed, through desert and jungle, over rock strewn ridges and icy crevasses, until I came at last to her door. A hastily made paper valentine’s card with her name on it stuck proudly to the door, reading, “Be mine FOREVER” and signed with a traitorous script, “Jeff”. My bowels slid from me and to the floor as I ripped into myself, hoping only that Jeff was worthy of her, and that he might be able to afford to hire someone to clean my corpse from her vestibule.

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