Monday, May 29, 2006

Decoration Day

My friend Hank and I used to talk about what would kill a date, end it completely if one was so inclined. The least erotic image we had ever seen was on the Imagine documentary, rented one weekend night. Hank and I usually hung out with a group of people, but everyone was somewhere else that night, leaving us and us alone the horror of watching Yoko Ono take off her shirt during one tender love scene with John. Dear Lord, Hank yelled, Keep the shirt ON, Yoko! Hank couldn't see more than a few inches in front of him and with one good eye so he backed away from the teeny-tiny television screen until the scene played out, and Yoko had returned to the safety of her black turtleneck. Sometimes, Hank claimed, one good eye was too much, like the time a mutual friend of ours had tried to seduce him by showing copious amounts of a very mottled and chunky thigh during "Blue Velvet" in a much too small mini-skirt. "She was near my good eye, Michelle, and I could see everything," he said with a shudder. "I had to keep focused on Dennis Hopper."

Blue Velvet could kill a date, although it wasn't a sure bet. The surest bet we knew was Bad Lieutenant, a truly depraved work in which one sees far too much of Mr. Harvey Keitel. Leaving Las Vegas (one of my favorite movies) always tends to dampen the mood. One of my friends, in a truly ill-thought out evening, rented both Leaving Las Vegas and Kids for his new girlfriend, who in a few short hours was clinging to her side of the bed in what was to be their last rodeo. Now that Hank has been dead for a few years, I find myself wondering what he would make of certain movies that have just come out. Most of what comes out of the studios seems awful in a santized way that makes one long for the days of Bad Lieutenant. Although I'd like to tell Hank he isn't missing much, he would no doubt get as close up to the screen with his magnifier and see, whatever he could manage, for himself.

Michelle's Spell of the Day

"I couldn't read so I had to read the book God wrote for me." John Lee Hooker

Johh Lee Hooker's Diet Plan

"Your doctor put you on milk, cream, and alcohol." JLH

Benedictions and Maledictions

First published in Curbside Review

Party Lines

Sid likes me to fuck other guys,
says the costumed Nancy as she goes
from lap to lap at my brother’s Halloween
party. In two years they’ll be divorced
and she will fuck other guys, and Sid
won’t like it one damn bit. Instead,
he’ll become a vegan, lose his sex
drive to an overabundance of soy milk
and sit around the house they bought
wondering what went wrong. I’ll remind
him of the time she broke in on one of his
phone calls to me and said, “I think we
should split up.” We all sat listening to each
other breathe for a minute before she said, “Go
back to your conversation,” and hung up, but
neither of us could remember what we were
talking about before she came on the line.


Tom said...

Wow Michelle; I loved Leaving Las Vegas. So much so, I bought it, and the sountrack. One of my favs. Someone gave me The Bad Lieutenant, as a gift(knowing how much I hated it)Thankfully my copy had the gross scenes edited. I burned it. A sort of ritual I perform for unwanteds.

X O Tom

cindy said...

Dear Michelle,

Cute post and I love the poem! So good.


Wichita-Lineman said...

Hank sounded like a nice guy, funny too. Really like the poem, like how it starts from a memory and then "two years later..." It's different. Interesting too how you conceal the identities by using the costume names. Last, Harvey Keitel is always showing too much, it's in his contract; he won’t make a movie unless he can bare his soul so to speak. That’s why Tom loves him so.

john said...

Dear Michelle,

Wonderful post for "Decoration Day." The poem is delicious! Bravo. Your friend could use some pointers as to what makes a good date, surely. But best to leave people to their own devices -- makes it sweeter for the rest of us.

paul said...

Oh man, bummer on the Pisttons, but made it through Sunday, so that counts for something,right?

Here's to the Cajun Queen, stay cool, don't lose your poise over anybody, that's my wisdom, such as it is --

R2 C2, always

Old Miami rocks!