The Frog Prince

The room is full of flies. One zips across me, then another, and I can hear the drone of many more inside of the bathroom. I don’t know where they are coming from, they’re all over the room. I kill a thousand a day. I walk toward the bathroom and throw open the door and there is this great black mass, forty thousand of them, and I spray fly-killer into it until the death fumes burn my eyes and nose.

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Mission Made Very Convenient

I started reading my book today, Mediodía de Frontera by Claudia Hernández, a collection of magic realist short stories set in the aftermath of the Salvadoran civil war. I first heard of the book in Chicago, while searching information online about the little country in which I’d been waiting not many hours before; waiting in San Salvador airport, looking into the dark glass of my departure gate because there was nothing else to do, just my own reflection to look at, this thinker’s face, the same face a Czech stripper had once described as a nice face, looking and waiting and not really believing that it was all over.

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Back O Da Bus

McDonald’s left me feeling unsatisfied, as usual. We walked around a bit afterwards. Talked about what we’re going to do back home. Went back to McDonald’s for coffee. It was the third time we’d been that day. Soaking up the Mexican culture. Well the coffee is good. Go fuck yourself.

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The Monkey

We were waiting in a garage
In the middle of Laos
When I noticed the monkey on a leash
Behind the garage
And the leash was tied to a rusted out car
As I watched
The monkey made crazy movements and fitted
Like it had a tic
From being tied up for so long

I watched it disappear inside the car
To be alone in another place

It’s a different sadness to the monkeys in Thailand
Where they’re forced to wear diapers
And have their pictures taken with tourists
And if they don’t look
Their heads are yanked toward the camera
So that you can put the picture on Facebook and show your friends
“Look! A monkey!”
Tiny dark unhappy eyes
Right there for the whole world to see

I wish there was something I could have done
For that poor lonely monkey
Behind the garage in Laos