From deep in the forest

In Japan, there is a place called the Suicide Forest. It is well-known. Many people go there to… well, there’s no need to describe what they do there. But there are photographs of tattered necktie remnants hanging from tree branches. Bones below them half-covered with earth and vines. For example. In the 1990s, a style…

Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back)

We were in Mexico, you and I, visiting your family, officially, but looking for your future wife, unofficially. You were, I mean — not me. Not that it matters. Anyway, you were lying on your bed, headphones on, listening to the new Flaming Lips CD, Clouds Taste Metallic, at my request. I asked what you thought.…

The Booth Option

Randy’s band is playing tonight. I haven’t seen Randy since that time I met him in that dive in Dallas. He got there ahead of me and was on his second beer, had his ear buds in at a booth by himself, black ball cap low over his eyes saying don’t bother me. And that’s…

The luthier

He hears in his head the rich, sweet note that has never been heard. The single, slow stroke from the bow sustained, before the bow is conceived. How can it be brought forth? he wonders. His heels crunch fallen leaves on the forest trail. His right hand on his cane, his left caressing the bark of…

The Art Inside

In his youth, he’d read a quote attributed to Michelangelo. The artist had answered the question of how he’d sculpted his masterpiece by saying he hadn’t sculpted anything at all. He had only chipped away enough stone to reveal the sculpture inside. The quote stayed with him. The Grand Canyon, too, was a beautiful thing…

Ode to Heavy Metal

O, Heavy Metal Music! You caught me unawares one night when I, alone in my bedroom, had the radio set to Q102, Texas’ Best Rock. You interrupted an endless parade of “meh” rock songs with “Two Minutes to Midnight” by Iron Maiden, the opening riff of which caused every ear attached to my head to…