Assembly Line Blues

For a time,
they’d known how to put all the pieces together,
until it became more profitable for the Conglomerates
for them to know how to make only one piece.
Then came the day that none of them knew how to make anything,
for the robots did everything.
And so they built the robots–
until the robots were taught how to recreate their own kind.
And the Conglomerates owned the robots,
until the robots owned them,
turning them into what they had been,
even as these bots became what Pinocchio had always dreamed of becoming.

Fiction Friday: Novelines

I’d always had a feeling there was a special reason why we went to that little, out-of-the-way diner during the long drive home…

Foster’s Diner was like a place that only appeared when we needed it, awaiting us at the end of a tree-lined road that seemed to go nowhere.

The Diner was like out of a Twilight Zone—it had a timelessness about it that made one want to go back to a place one had never been.

Beth and Gerald Foster were friends of the family, yet they had never met my mother. Somehow, I knew she wasn’t supposed to know about them.

Only David knew where the Diner was; if I tried to find it myself, I’d be as Gretel, lost in the woods.  David was the magic that made it appear.

Years later, I would learn that Foster’s Diner wasn’t our hideaway, but the hideaway of its owners—for the woman David loved hated them.

Twas always summer at Foster’s Diner—the magnolias with their fat, white blooms creating a green canopy like a time capsule, preserving it.

The foliage surrounding Foster’s Diner was thick, so even when it was summer day, it felt like winter night.  We were always the only patrons

Leaving Foster’s Diner was like a drive-through car wash, but with leaves scraping our windows, like fingers trying to keep us there.

The light always blinded me so when I tried to look back, I could no longer see the diner, as if it had been a mirage—one David and I shared.

I’d accepted the mythical nature of my and David’s whimsical retreat long ago, never once thinking I’d try to find the answer to its mystery.

Only David and I knew of the Fosters—of their little diner in the big woods. When we left this earth, their memory would die with us.

Foster’s Diner was our Brigadoon, except it did not appear for a day out of a century, but for us only, for the time we were there.

Logline for Because of Mindy Wiley An Irish-Catholic girl coming of age in the Deep South during the New Millennium finds her family splintered when two Mormon missionaries come to her door, their presence and promise unearthing long-buried family secrets, which lead to her excommunication and exile.

The Burial Underground

Twined with rusting links resembling
tarnished jewelry,
wrapped like a mummy in white sheets,
like a goddess of ancient Greece,
a woman resides in the Lochness Lagoon—
an artifact of a domestic goddess
who identified with being a mermaid.
Her legs are tied together,
even as her hands reach upward,
unbound by wood or satin,
or the complexities of life.

In life, he imprisoned her;
in death, he set her free,
for there is no grave with his name on it
attached to hers.
She is free to remain alive in the hearts
of those who still love her above.

The water plunders her flesh,
even as it preserves her bones,
in this twilight zone
known as Davy Jones’s Locker.