barry picked me up in his honda bird he hasnt named yet. i couldnt help but think of popsi and the only instructions he demanded upon my brothers and i : NO MOTORCYLES. it wasnt a "stay in school, make straight a's". it had nothing to do with his impeccable sense of money and workmanship that every midland texas banker holds. it wasn't like my father's words to justin, the eldest, warning him "i don't want to be a grandfather yet... condoms are at the QT." it didnt even have anything to do with the four stanley siblings at all! we were kids. we never thought of riding a motorcycle a day my popsi was alive. but i think... him knowing our compasses and which directions we were heading, he sensed the biting traveling bug and had only one sentence to warn. as i rode bitch with barry's pink bandana flapping in the wind, i waved hello to popsi in the sun. i knew i was disobeying his one rule he left us with, but the yellow-tinted aviators made san antonio street look like a road to nowhere. we revved our engines. i hugged barry tighter. i couldnt help but think of popsi as i pretended brendan and clay were behind us on brazilian soil.

barry rode us out to these country roads off ranch road 12. with the yellowed goggles on, i swore i was in germany again. a germany landscape that had cactus scattered everywhere. a german tableaux where the deer posed and stared as we roared through the curves. the wind bit at my eyes and i could taste the actual oxygen clear out my nostrils.

we joked like we always do. i thought of us borrowing leather jackets from friends and riding west til our skins howled. i suddenly have a different view on easy rider and those small town biker bars. the sun started setting on us as i smiled at every passer. i smiled at every passerby in my life, whether they be of past, of present, or future. i smiled and realized i dont smile enough. we never allow the wind to hit our faces on those zombie-like commutes in the deadening cars. i felt so alive, and yellowed, and secure.


it's killing time

i thought of you and your limousines today. "the face," they call you. faith sung that song tonight, only not in a hot tub but with a banjo and stand-up bass and an operetta and drums. she says, we don't like to kill things except fear and misery. and i try and try and try....

popcorn-for-one in the movie theater alone... everyone hears me crunch and then we all sniffle and laugh together as strangers. i thought of you and i when we frequented these dark spaces. how i wished you were there til the very end of the film so we could guess the last letter of the credits. i wished it'd be "w" today. i think it's always "a."

our heart-shaped cookie cutters look nothing like our hearts. i want to know why this is. i want to know why we always want to skip the healing process. we'll never slow down. we're always growing old. the graphs won't steady until we're in the ground.