Jim is sometimes his own best friend. He sometimes lounges about in his filthy white bath-robe and calls Isaiah, his bookie. What a strange name for a bookie, don’t you think? Jim looks down at his white feet while he listens to Isaiah talk of over-unders, speaking in that little bookie white-noise voice of his, hypnotizing Jim into betting more than he should. So Jim makes his indelicate wagers and when he hangs up the phone, he despises himself. Jim sometimes is not his own best friend.
So Jim Archive
Jim is hiding behind the hay bales. He is planting in the orange-yellow full moon. He’d give all he has for something new, but then the light of day is upon him, like a dream, and he sees her coming and the water shines like diamonds in the dew.
He is just getting up. He’s going to hit the road before it’s light. He is trying to catch an hour on the sun.
Then he sees her rolling by. He’s feeling like his day has just begun. Just then, he sees an eagle flying high in the summer sky and the river bending down the gorge behind his house.
He searches for his companions who are lost in the canyon beyond the river. It was then that he knew that he’d had just about enough, so he burned his credit cards for fuel and headed out to where the pavement turns to sand with a one-way ticket to the land of truth, and his suitcase in his hand.
How he lost his friends he still doesn’t understand. There was nothing that they needed, nothing left for them to find. So why were they lost, lost in the rock formations which became park bench mutations on the sidewalks and in the stations. They were waiting, waiting…. So Jim (being Jim) just got bored and left them there. They were just dead weight to him anyway. He convinced himself that he was better off without that load.
For some reason, this situation brought him back to a time when he was eight. He was watching his parent’s TV, and it was some Grand Canyon rescue episode where a vulture glides descending on an asphalt highway bending through libraries and museums, galaxies and stars, down the windy halls of friendship to a rose clipped by the bullwhip and the motel of lost companions with a heated pool and bar.
But Jim isn’t stopping there; he’s got his own row to hoe, just another line in his field of time. And when she comes, he’ll be stuck in the sun like dinosaurs in shrines.
But he’ll know the time has come.
*This is a riff on the Neil Young song “Thrashers.”
Jim is a cog that turns and turns, and like a cog he knows why he’s turning and the consequences of it. “What?” you say, “a cog capable of consciousness? I’ve never heard such a thing.” Well, apparently, you haven’t read the latest issue of Artificial Intelligence. Researchers at the University of Alabama have discovered signs of sentience in simple machine parts. So Jim is like a cog after all.