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Antonia Sweet

The Last Time I Saw Elvis

I guess I need some full-body contact. I am dwelling in a weeping dwelling in my crepe-paper skin marred flawed dented bruised, quivering even at a standstill. Grandma, you live on in my upper arms and in the broken blood vessels of my cheeks. One hundred seventy pounds of nonrompin stompin shitsack.

And somebody like him would never even look at someone like me. He'd look at a girl with everything tight high packed, well-oiled, smelling like sin, red red paint, bright sculptured hair. Willing swooning trusting him like fuck. Aaaaaaaahhh god, he would taste like something loose and gleeful going down, something with a tinge of bitterness, with an easy open laugh and some sweet weight. A man with an unreliable eyebrow who'll let me wipe my greasy fingers on his pants, who'll make my bones pull apart inside me, my retina detach.

Four a. m. Let me go down to Wal-Mart and get some relief, walk around, get me something to stop this slidey wail. Aaaaaaaahh, can't stand myself, can't hardly see, my heart up all night choking and gasping. Fretful child, settle.

Freaking car knows the way in the late heavy damp. Two cylinders firing, fucked-up wiring, tires bald as a bat. Why all these buggies out? There must be eight thousand of them! Can't even get in the lot. Hope it's open. Shoot, world's second biggest Wal-Mart better be open 24-7. I'll just park on the road and walk on in. Wreck my tennis shoes.

Hey, what's that? A sliver of wet silver from the side of my eye and when I spin around quick a wall of buggies stands there still and innocent, just the faint ting of clinking metal on metal muffled by the fog.

"Let me pass."

Pressing up against my belly gently, wet grid marks. Herding me somewhere, like they're excited little kids, little yelps sneaking out, jostling, jingling.

Rip, something tore the last card for sound off at the perforations, let it flutter to the ground. The fog gulped and lifted up. Time was hanging out.

Bang, a spotlight illuminates something dropped into the silent liquid sky, held up against a scrim of moldy velvet for just a moment. A man.

Sashays, just a little flourish, turns his face away then snaps it back around to me. Slow grin. The jewels on the jumpsuit catching the hot light quite nicely and refracting through the mesh of water.

My eyes.

His collar rolled up around his black-hole hair, his parachute harness, his open arms: he likes the light. Not a solid bone in my body.

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