Three Shorts

Megan Martin


Lawn vs. Apartment

Our lawn glistened wet with residue of intellectualized genital excitements. Our lawn was perfect, crammed with oversexed gophers writing novels in lawnchairs, talking Nietzsche on the picnic blanket with dinner guests. Later our lawn quaked beneath us like a churchy blanky as we spoke perfect French into one another's orifices.

The lawn you picture is so often not really a viable lawn. I forgot to imagine soil, that crucial element. It turned out you had never read Bernhard, and spent your nights snake-charming up and down the cul-de-sac for booty. I hated dinner guests. On that lawn in my polka-dot bathing suit and blonde wig and non-prescription glasses, I was a total phony. 

I decided to become a real, everyday person, easily satisfied by microscopic things. Apartment with New Everyday Lover burst with plants and sun and bright paint and yet something about it stank nasty like an infection. While I was cognitively aware that the imaginary lawn was far worse, there was still that soft spot in me like a punched eye. When I cried it oozed Truffault quinoa all over our boring newsmagazines and floppy broccoli and synthetic rugs. 

I said to New Everyday Lover: Lover, you are sufficient, and so sexy, and a real person even. But had the imaginary lawn lived up to its potential, I would be there right now, basking in the brilliance of life.   

New Everyday Lover drooped. I saw how he had never been watered, or not for many years. How I had not, either, how wherever I was I was dried up.

It is stupid to say "I just woke up one day…" and anyway nobody believes you.   

But we went to sleep in a pile of sadness for seventeen years. One morning the sun was up: all our appliances and our peely wallpaper and even our wrecked teeth shined holy moly like the lottery, and we were holy moly, and it was so. 


Ten-Year Retrospective

I sprawl on a lawn in the heat. Nothing comes along, nobody. Every day people die on lawns in bikinis, in front of passersby who do not know they are dead.

I thought deeply about this, as much as one can, on a lawn. I thought how I would end up on the news.

Otherwise today was a huge tear in the atmosphere. Boyfriend purchased a steak the size of his face for an occasion he'd invented to create intercourse. It bled all over our countertops. It wrecked his lips with blood. Way back as a child, I knew, Boyfriend had won a prize for his sculptures of woodland creatures, but things were wrong with me, too. The outfit I wore was plain and dull and stupid. I was waiting for television to tell me what was going on.

Next week I will throw in the trowel, I thought. I will require assistance getting anything into my mouth, choosing kneesocks, etc. But I am me: I will put on kneesocks despite it, I will put on kneesocks despite it, I will put on kneesocks despite it, the ones with the sexy flamingoes somebody else I loved and who loved me more – though the shrink says just differently - gave me once. 

In the present moment, the kneesocks will greatly improve my opinion on my life and looks.

Boyfriend refused my napkins so I said fuck you Boyfriend and put on this unflattering bikini.

In retrospect, I was way too blonde to be killed by such a lawn. According to the television, what was really going on was this woman, this idiotic woman who could not accept truth, releasing a circus chimp into the dead of Africa, trying to make it who it was before.


Good Like Christ

You were very good on the rings, good like Christ. When I saw your bulging arms, I got what you could do for me because I understood a symbol.

I decided I should love you, took you into downtown where there were sirens and trash and a strand of bloody pearls I cleaned in a sewer and put on before you could see their truth.

When you went down on your knees, I went up over your muscles. You weren't expecting me to climb your shoulders to reach the greenery. I began eating leaves because I believed I could make myself mystical, even downtown in this godawful city, brightly glowing in the leaves' special light.

You got what I could do for you when I said I loved you. Your palms on me were bloody and crushed with all manner of jagged filth, smearing and scraping up my tits. You said my pearls were sophisticated while you choked me. 

There's nothing we can do for you, said the police when they came to my door.