Simeon Berry

(I, Pome) Beachfront Property

The nuclear material that seeps from our fleur-de-lis is retroactive, and must be contained. We jump the menace fence to go to the grave of Jim where he died just outside of Yonder, on the crepuscular beach. His tombstone reads: Amalgamated Jim, and we set the steel canister just below the day-glo trademark. Now the past tense will contaminate his stylish repose. One is never more than slightly sad at the beach. Drowned dogs bark through the surf, saying, Our eyebrows hold sway over your cardiac chart. We get to fuck sphinxes all night long. Don't come looking for us. But I am me and the pome is mine. When I stumble across an intimation, I club it like the white asterisk of a baby seal. I look directly into the fabulous batteries of solace, where the circuitry is waxen and absolutely selective.

(I, Pome) The Sestina Factory

I meet up with the Tween at the Sestina Factory. So it's true then, what they say about tapeworms? They repeat? The Tween nods. He clutches a white torus of donut in his hand protectively. All I know is that when they bring the equivalence, they bring it. Haven't you noticed that we're standing on lichen? That your clothes smell like cedar smoke? Next, you'll get lupus and become wise. I look down the factory line at the antique valves, the lime green screens where the workers watch the oscilloscopes. It's a simple assignment--the Tween interrupts: Yeah, see if the mirror image was in on it. Have you ever tried to decipher a fingerprint that was trademarked by a minotaur? You end up parroting back all the end words: thread, fur, hot, musk, corner, horn. And a sudden urge for oats. I'm telling you, the exactness you're after won't come from here. He takes a bite from the doughnut carefully, sugar drifting like spores over his shaking hands. Only grandmothers who read by the light of their chemo, and first cousins crosshatched with a fine lattice of model airplane glue. Something mathematical comes over the loudspeaker, and the Tween winces. Can't we--dropping his voice-- ditch this and see what's on Friday Night Cusp?

(I, Pome) The Tween's Near-Death Experience

The sound of something abrading and then featureless white. A tawny reek of vanilla, and metal rubbing on metal. The Tween thinks something heavy must have fallen on him; maybe the boxed, three-volume set of Absinthe and Abattoir: A Backstory. He opens his eyes to see corridors with linen wallpaper, subtle amplitudes of blank shag, milky Exit signs, and dead fluorescents that simply imply light. The only tint is his shadow, which he realizes is densely composed of small type: Yes, that's it: down here, damn it. Think you're so hot in your worsted suit and sleek ambivalence. Malignant cool. Big deal. So you're compromised: you brought the T-shirt with the cute obscenity and schooled that gerund as if it did something to you. Language startles the self into bas-relief while revising the world. The fact that it is vice-versa is what makes it awesome, so saying the grass is only something you scribbled is like saying your psyche is a full bar stocked solely with fifty bottles of peppermint schnapps. If you wanted to shut down possibilities, you should have gone into accounting. I mean, hello! Even now Audubon's corpse is ordered by the clockwork dialect of an agonized finch. Angels climax in the astringent light given off by a differential equation, and cancer continues to bud in dark, luscious clusters that keep botanists awake all night, dreaming of a closed system. So don't chain the doors on this Last Resort yet. There's still some speech that will fuck you up.