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Flakes of Wrath


by Jeremy Collins

June 04, 2003

Armored for battle,
cloaked in more aluminum than a penniless can collector,
Shiny toys dangle from either side;
resembling something from early Batman comics,
or possibly a high school science experiment.

I stand a knight, my sword drawn.
Todayís dragon overhung and pocketed as usual,
But a layback looms overhead taunting and jeering at my pursuit.
Obviously sustained, but nothing I havenít encountered before.
Deep breath and long sigh, fingering the cold metal at my side.

Midweek and silent,
Alone with Bald Eagle, Spoonbill,
and the occasional puttering of fishermen snagging the main course.
Occasionally I laugh out loud at my situation-
Golden weather solitude.
Then I feel guilty and realize Iím the foolish one.

After a long depressing winter,
The sun reintroduces itself, as I waste no time welcoming it back.
I pick away at the icing that coats my cake.
Limestone sheds skin like a rattler emerging from a hole too small
or a tree in autumn shaken of itís leaves.
Quality of stone leaves much to be desired,
but colors and textures scream to be touched.

Four bolts off the earth,
Hanging from a talon of steel curled precariously around a divot
smaller than a nostril.
Much exhaustion, sweat and decision making pass, then-
Finally at the crack, object of obsession.
Digging fingers in to second knuckle, the goal is worthy.
Plugging a Batman toy, I step from the face into layback.

Peripheral vision tells me a ďdeath flakeĒ looms above,
Perched on an edge unfit for a cup of coffee.
I had fears from the base, but little did I know.
Peering eye to eye with the dragon, I cringe in smallness,
Collapsing in my slings considering retreat.
Hammering another four inches, my arms collapse-
Steel pipes dangling from chains in sockets.

I lower myself defeated.
Now the decision process as I dig in the dirt plotting revenge.
The flake loses immensity from so far below.
However, I cower exposed and tender-
A glass figurine miniature.

I succumb to temptation and coil up.
A short hike; now on top of the dragon, peering from above.

Gently descending to my high point,
Eventually perpendicular to the beast.
I study my opponent; fractured and shadowed.
I tap it once, just slightly on itís left side.
Released from the wall,
Rotating sideways, arcing across the wall in a wide pirouette,
Simple encouragement with a flick.

Similar dimensions of a car hood,
Sharpened on all sides by time.
Cart wheeling earthbound in terminal velocity.
I suck at the paste in my mouth and swallow hard,
Grateful for my instincts.

I was alone not due to timing,
broken friendships or the like.
I bear no death-wish or hermetic tendencies.
Simply this- the others disappeared to the desert,
In the great Vegas Exodus of 2002.

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