All Fucked Up
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2002-07-04 21:20:44 (UTC)

Jungle Dreams


There he was, the sunlight illuminating his sweaty immaculate face,
teeth grinning widely to welcome his newest grunt. Timidly, I
entered, the heat inside the hut being just as unpleasant as it was
outside-- it was like a sepulcherd tomb of heat, sealed off from the
rest of the world; it's rancid smell seering up my tortured notrils


"This is Benz," the more experienced grunt introduced me to the man
w/the toothy grin. He had been lying cooly in the hammock the whole
time, but now, before taking a bite of a banana-- "for iron", he
explained-- he sat menacingly upright in his hammock, seemingly
shrugging off death itself and that Gawd-awful reminder of it that
hung casually behind him on his shantily decorated wall-- a nearly
life-size black and white blow up photo of Ho Chi Minh. Also hanging
was a paper soiled w/bloody cursive which someone had placed
violently into the wall w/a jagged stainless steel knife. It read
w/an air of apathy:

Everyday in the world,
300, 000 people die
A human life means nothing

"Stick it there," he said, once more exposing the unforgettable smile
while he extended out his hand not occupied w/the molding banana


For a mere moment now lost in time I stood scrutinizing his sweaty
hand adorned w/veins-- like a network of freeways back home in L.A. I
imagined that I'd see the blood speeding through one of them, then
trying in vain to careen into another before bursting-- errrrrrrr,
crasssh. "Died of clogged arteries" his epitaph would read, "Didn't
merge lanes." But-- our hands merged and he held my grasp a little
longer than would otherwise be considered comfortable-- it didn't
matter much to me, however; his touch was soft and tender-- almost
embraceful-- unlike the others in the hut, whose simple touch could
harden your very soul


A pause. I stared up at his face-- smoky green distinctive eyes that
were only attained only after having seen many men fall to their
deaths, an almost too perfectly sraight nose in which, whose nostrils
napalm flared up in daily government prescribed doses, the crazy
white smile of pearls, full blood red lips, the tanned hue belonging
to one who has traveled the world in search of redemption and instead
got burnt in hell, the sweat pouring robustly from his sandy ringlets
tied up in a bandana. Then I stared back at his banana....the God-
awful idea of such a man clenching perhaps subconsciously to such an
awkwardly shaped fruit hit me. Noting my questioning look, he became
more alert and said, "It's to remind me of the dicks I'll be smashing
of our enemy. But mostly...well, it's for iron"


"They say Jesus was really hung," he concluded thoughtfully, a look
of contempt overcoming his gorgeous face. Then, unexpectedly, he got
up, leaving the fish netted hammock swinging in the staunch Oriental
air. I could tell that he was tripping now-- and badly, at that.
Another grunt explained that he often laced his bananas w/acid and
would play off that it was for "iron"-- such a "magic fruit" in these
remote areas was known as a "yellow submarine" after The Beatle's
tune. The man w/the toothy grin was stumbling aimlessly like a
frantic L.A. driver. "Jesus....they say His was teen feet tall, you
know." He then walked out into the steamy orange twilight-- that
awkward time in the Far East where the politics of ecstacy suddenly
become real and your soul merges surrenderingly to nirvana. That was
the last I saw of the man w/the toothy grin. Those who knew him best
say he was shot down, but I don't know. I think they crucified the

" 'does yr hard-on hurt, private?'
'no, serge"
'why not, private?'
'man behind me, sir' "
--kerouac, book of blues

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