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The Gravitron

I’m showering at 3:00 a.m., trying to decide if I’m having a stroke. My heart’s racing, there's a sharp pinch in my shoulder blade, and my head feels like I just got off a Gravitron.
Recent posts

In State In Heaven

She lay in state by the window, her face softened in final repose. Outside, the little birds she enjoyed fluttered and pecked at the feeder. Brave pansies shivered in the frozen ground.

Film Noir: My Top 100

Under the myth of the American dream lurks a dark, seedy side — a gutter littered with broken hearts and despair. And yet, a stubborn sliver of hope endures, a longing for all things brighter.

In the Ninth Ward

Thursday night. New Orleans. The moon’s in the last quarter. Outside Vaughan’s in the Ninth Ward, a white Mercedes rolls up, the doors open and a plume of pungent smoke billows in the air. Two skinny kids get out and head inside, soon returning with steaming bowls of butter beans. Word got out that Chris was cooking. 

Out of the Blue

Out of the blue and into the black describes the descent of a wildly dysfunctional family in this rambling, nihilistic film by Dennis Hopper. Don, a degenerate convict, pulses with Hopper’s dark charisma, devouring everything in his path. Kathy, his wife, numbs herself from the chaos with drugs and sex, leaving Cebe, their daughter, on her own to deal with the fallout. It doesn’t end well. Cebe, played by Linda Manz, seems to sneer at the brutal cards handed to her, but under that tough facade is a bruised child who craves the comfort and love that’s been absent in her life. Tragically, her signature walk, that strident march, leads her nowhere.

The Misfits

Oh wow, Marilyn. The Misfits is a peculiar film, dropping a sensitive and melancholy idealist into the crucible of crumbling western masculinity. Gay, Perce, and Guido would do almost anything for Roslyn, yet they resent her power over them. Their traumas are skillfully revealed, the emotional weight carried by Roslyn from which she cries, “Help.”  Roslyn, too, has become disillusioned by her own troubles but somehow clings to a fading idea of love. Perhaps she’s resigned to the idea that as a woman, this is as good as it’s gets.  Thank goodness for Thelma Ritter’s comic relief, but sadly she disappears after the first half.  The Misfits is a little wobbly at times, but it never bucks you off. The stellar star power binds it together making for an intense and heartbreaking ride.

Love Lifted Me | #365 Prompts

We’d practiced "Love Lifted Me" in GAs until it sounded reasonably good. Well, Anna sounded good. I suppose it was expected since she was the preacher’s daughter and honestly blessed with an angelic voice. She carried any number the trio performed. This time, however, it was a quartet. The choir director had reluctantly invited me to join—I guess she felt it was her moral duty to include me while knowing I couldn't sing.   But I would do for a Sunday night service when the pews were mostly empty. I wasn’t nervous really, even though I’d never sang in front of an audience. And I had forgotten about my bouts of hysteria. Now, these little fits weren’t debilitating. Just brief and inappropriate responses to stressful situations. Like when my dad fell from the ladder and caught his foot in the rung. He was swinging by his sickled ankle, and all I could do was laugh. He grew angry, livid even, screaming at me to help, but I rolled on the ground in hilarious convulsions. My ste