The Older, newly arranged. Brandon Joyce.

Recently, my body has been seized with an ungodly energy, enough to make my jaw gnash and quiver, enough to sprint for an unbroken twenty-minutes, enough to light a whole city-block, enough to fuel seven hour treks to Nowhere on my bicycle. The hours from three to twelve are relentless, and no actions can match or expel the pace and perpetual motion. At six, post-meridian time, I ritualistically prepare a cup of Maxwell House Instant Coffee, stronger than hell and sweet as love. The exact measurements, discovered under rigorous scientific conditions, are 1 cup of boiling water, with 1 tablespoon each of coffee, sugar, and offbrand Coffeemate. A Pythagorean proportionality for the subtle palate of an unreformed caffeine addict.
Twenty-minutes after downing my daily coffeine, I enter a phase-change, and at every instant I find myself somewh ere new, almost inexplicably. At one moment, I’m at the Morefield Gem Mine, in Amelia, Virginia, digging and sifting for semi-semi-semi-precious stones, mining for “crack rock” while others dig for treasure, sitting there punch-drunk, muddy, and adoring every heat-splintered second of it. Giving in to the Absurd, I brought home five-pounds of mica, a five pound netting of ‘pixie dust’ that I shake onto passers-by like crab-seasoning. The next minute, in a flash, I’m whorfing down sushi in Willie and Lucy’s cottage, listening to Big Top circus music, gagging on the dregs of Turkish coffee, reading bits of Venus in Furs. Then without warning, I awake from a hypnoidal Tetris session with 400,000 points and callous thumbs. I’m never sure where the next flash will transport me. As it happens, it was into the middle of a rain-soaked field, after a day-long deluge had carried away my driveway, and after a bizarre set of circumstances, which will go with me to the grave. Our resolutions sharpened after bathing in the architecture school drone, Willie and Lucy and I flung our poor bodies down the slippery slopes of Monroe and Carr’s Hill, in hubristic defiance of Rain and Nature. Our arms were striped pink and red from the grassblades, and I think I dislocated my pelvis with a slight miscalculation in the trajectory of a long superleap to bouncing assplant. But our ad hoc nature-slides solved the eternal problem of damp days, once and for all. We cannot trust the Sun, but Gravity, for sure, will never fail us.


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