When the disaster comes upon us, it does not come.

Maurice Blanchot


Far outside of my warren, gray covered subjects sleep uncomfortably strapped to faux coach lights in front of each foreclosed home. They loll their heads from side to side in the diffuse and impotent light. Their arms hang at their sides. The bulges and recesses of biceps promise swiftness and power if they could act.

From the corners of their mouths, crude arrows of saliva stretch towards the yellow smoke that clings to the ground.

As I wander, I find a white boy.

My mesh eyes are deeper than the destruction around the white boy and me. Little is left beneath my fursuit.

A new book on flesh must be sought.

The subjects intrude on paper; their color bleeds across the serenity of blankness. Their Kewpie doll hairstyle betrays the insinuation that alone in this state man is complete.

I recline on a brown sofa that had been dragged to the curb years ago. I stroke the white boy’s hand. The rough wood staff against the couch is my monolith, the testament I belong.

This athletic young man spends his nights chasing, catching, being caught. Desire supersedes love.

These tiny blue words have been dug into his flesh. Alone in this state man is complete. These tiny blue words empty as light fades.

Short maroon fur covers the white boy’s body as he tucks the loose edges of my fursuit around his sides. I interpret this as a shallow and callow plea for my continued protection until our root systems become intertwined.

Dry leaves rustle above the blanching halo of streetlights.

The gamey subjects, posed with dead dogs, dominate the low, washed-out skyline and loom over the suburban landscape. Masculinity surges over land and sky. The subjects’ sneering, ruddy faces often bear down on the boy at my right hand.

Their half-hooded eyes size me up as their worn-down and wrinkled canvas clothes suggest the vast extent of this new wilderness.

Although this boy clings to me, he is psychically disconnected from this frontier and feigns a more cosmopolitan and stable persona than necessary. Even my walking stick from which bark peels promises only a faltering and temporary stability.

The white boy’s wardrobe is surprisingly sensible. Work clothes—a bright purple pair of sweats—he opts to wear them tight since they indicate the characters and environments already flattened in our physical adventure although he no longer needs such a direct reference to his alma mater across his ass in our precarious space.

Nothing can sustain him here.

The brown fur around my fursuit’s mesh eyes radiates around the boy’s pale image, but still his eyes are dark. I wake him, and he shakes his ass and grabs my white teardrop tail. He thumps his foot onto the ground pantomiming looking for Easter chocolate in a yew tree next to a hanging subject.

Resistance to the new world is at best skewed.

I pull his sweat pants over his knees. Heteronormative strictures and moral constraints have filled the space that would have allowed for a cohesive identity-driven population.

Rooted in insinuation and pornography, potential scraps suggest an emotional narrative. Graphic vintage porn juxtaposed against the arc of terror provides the only functional history. Innate lack inverts the fragmentary passages of historical invocation. Ultimately, the resistance of history includes the resistance to history.

This place where I manifest as unreadable brings me to question the nature and strength of time; this unreadable point is the brilliant and harsh white boy and mask that blot my face from the view of the tortured. Individual identity of the image holder is destroyed. The stellar void houses access to the modular for those who can no longer go to the glory hole, that ancient oasis of self-desire.

The subjects suffer the arrival of feral children who follow instinctual vibrations with ears low to the ground in search of the weak. I fear them and let them torment the bound men. They mumble as they claw and burn the calves and chests of these men.

The children believe the key to the arrival of ghosts is pain and brutality impregnated by their laughter’s tears. They leave their small, bloody fingerprints over the moldering ranch houses as they search for their spectral context.

Their high-pitched utterances about salvageable goods (canned foods, gasoline, propane, pornography, etc.) provide me with incentive to explore their abandoned cul-de-sacs during the day.

The ink (crude words and images) tapped over our skins does not have defined boundaries. I try to speak, but the words float through my head and mis-fire in my throat. Fucking white boy sleeping through my mysteries as they die for no fucking reason.

The restrained subjects suffer pains beyond the search for the churning dead. So any thoughts of premature release reeks of futility.

This character reveals a deep misunderstanding with three kids beating a small congregation of rats in a nest below the nearest subject. Supposedly sophisticated existence accepts the slightest critical engagement with younger boys and girls mulling in the corner.

I move my gloved hand, slowly over the boy’s head; liquid rushes over my bare tongue.

The kids are singular force whose persona like Whitman’s permits contradictions and provokes an urge to make myths.

I realize that it is not just the three kids doing the beatings but a network of triads. Each triad carries an ax or copper pipe.

Their words echo through the moans of inflicted pain, which numbs material consciousness.

Fundamentally, I have faith in the way the children tack down loose social issues. They change the very function of our current struggle with dissent on a more distant level.

This dirty, ginger boy moans that human existence is discontinuous, that true dissent is not fully expressed anymore in the deftness of heterogeneity.

The remaining torsos of the subjects hang awkwardly, balls of gray and red flesh. They swing with the swift and steady blows of children.

Beautiful and brilliant, their internal pain is resilient even to external torment. The death of culpability cannot be released from the reader. And it is the ax blows that lead to guilt and panic of the body.

The destruction of identity is through the most vicious acts that permeate the environment. The boy’s knees nuzzle my calves. Paranoid, the boy must face the absurdity of our situation and the ultimate danger of children who taunt and torment the hobbled men.

The essential flaw will be his refusal to turn to the new society. Even if his gestures suggest his return will be in disarray, injustice disarranges time; however, there is a necessary attempt to remain.

The red sky lightens. The white boy confronts me with ubiquitous uncertainty.

An answer machine in the nearest house creaks through its nineteen-eighties novelty message, “Nobody’s home, Nobody’s home…”

Quivering, my lip itches, burns.

This text shows us the early growth of romance in a shellac of filth. I try to speak but the words mis-fire in my throat and float through my furry mask.

As a liquid narrator, I must face the absurdity of this situation and the ultimate danger of this community.

Our deaths and inherent sense of culpability in the action of children, their chilling feats worthy of Napoleon, will not be escaped. The uncertainty, the fear, the plot of escape echoes the action of children moist with blood.

As laughter and the sloshing of liquid peels through the housing development, the white boy falls back asleep.

Dawn light catches the empty space around the boy’s errant, nearly invisible facial hairs. This fucking white boy’s entire skull is illuminated by the vast and hobbling pain of others.

I rear back to go, so the subjects can reject the new culture in pursuit of solitude. Behind in the back yard, words (victim, prisoner, homeowner, etc.) that indicate the failure of the low grade fervor of trying to name, to draw things from our world into the simulated world of suburbia no longer have potency.

I leave the boy to fend for himself as I head back to the city for an appointment. The dead but burning weight of the sun rises revitalizing the text and will perhaps grant him a semblance to the world passed-away.

Nicholas Alexander Hayes is an editor at Ignavia Press. He is currently working on contemporary retellings of Greek Myths with Terri Griffith. His book of poetic text, NIV: 39 & 27, is forthcoming from BlazeVox [books]. His recent writing has appeared in Word Riot, Sein Und Werden, and Madder Love: Queer Men and the Precincts of Surrealism.

Disaster Taxa