Somebody wanted to say there is no time to get into an argument, even if there were it wouldn’t be while you are driving this steaming CRV, and on this day, the anniversary of a hero, and please because I had seen in the news about what happened to J.D. Salinger. But somebody felt like a demi-god ether of dust upon a cross, that somebody might have been me. Morphed into a meme by the long hours of waiting for my continued treatment. The truth is, I don’t want delve into their personal lives too much, but I will tell you I was in the stressful center of the greatest hijacking scheme of all time, combusting just above the speed limit from the smell of salt water crab with most of the sand in southern California systematically backed into my suitcase and briefs…the heat would never be parried by any sun roof; the windshield must’ve been built proof. What they were arguing about is mechanically impossible to recollect but built into the swooping ink confrontation of illustrations I drew on the drive. A duel is never done. How is it that two people who lived in this world right up through to the 1980’s could be so bad at Let It Be? But I guess that was the decade John Lennon died, and I guess passed into the reflected folds beyond any collecting cloud of consciousness.
It was the year the white cover of The Catcher in the Rye was stained red with the blood of a messenger, and by the way, what twisted judgment system could shun Salinger into some random house arrest for the rest of his only short time here and his entire eternal reprinting. Was it trauma traced on J.D.’s mind from escaping World War II by a bit of this teeth and the battle of the bulge, his skeletal hand grasping the pasty bed sheet and thinking he was suffocating or that from society at large. I know, he seemed content enough alone to press it all into a few pages, so long as no one else played with the words he shaped from his own spinning clay apprenticed by even the most lonely hand of constraint. The way he swirled the clouds (into a halo) on the day he went would marvel the saint. But the autumn leaves will soon be racked into straight Christmas rows and that God will scrape his fingernails against the stratosphere to line up the sheep for sunset January 27th. I guess his endings are almost always soaked red.
The bricks and mortar had been formed into a grid around the Dakota on the day that a stubby .38 caliber revolver ignited like strawberries and John was punctured by four unique hollow-point bullets expanding upon impact. The blasts shattering more glass inside his heart cage than any voice alone could break. Hypovolemic shock sometime before Lennon bleed out the last pints of a merry-go-round horse already biting red arteries in its mouth. For Holden Caulfield plead it was a sacrifice for sacrilege offering walrus forever the fierce deity of wealth and corruption or else a home grown religion of truth to bruise bigger than Jesus, nothing short of crucifying that self-killing prophecy of a man. And as he gave up the ghost and murmured “this is the end” some townsfolk gathered around and Mark Chapman’s voice could still be heard hot as a gunshot steaming, “Hypocrite!” That’s a curious kid Chapman we both want to model our existence after that famous anti-hero. A distant trumpet could barely be felt like the great rivers of New York City Charlie Browning a critical strike that drones on: All you need is love. All you need is love. All you need is love, love. Love is all you need.
It was during this sockless return, on the eve of eternal winter, as I sat sailing down blue asphalt, sprawling with my tired road trip eyes, in the backseat beside my kid sister, I felt the car beneath me jerk—and I heard their anger writhing through the opening circles in the backs of their necks—as their head-rests split and checkered car fabric rips likes worm holes from 1980. Whose atom or stream used to be cruel to his woman and beat her. Who will be the first to admit it is getting better all the time? When I felt the stratosphere shake I should not have waited to say this: I wish you would not say some of those things in front of my little sister. I still tell my friends she is only about 12 years old and on this day, the anniversary of a hero, lower your voices, show some respect for the dead.