By Lenore Weiss

What language do you think I’m talking? Yes, give me a cigarette. I’m feeling about as shitty as yesterday when they brought me in and my hand hurts. It’s bandaged. Busted it through the glass when I was trying to scare that stupid shit shrink that they sent to the house to calm me down when she Nancy said she was leaving with my daughter just like that after four years of being married she was going to chicken shit run out on me and leave me just like her to do something when I said we could go to counseling but she said she was sick of it and was taking my daughter Helene away and if she wasn’t there how was I going to be her father you tell me that how can you be the father to a child who isn’t there and she said that wasn’t her goddamn problem she had her share of problems and had tried to make it work but all I was interested in was being a lout she actually called me a lout I didn’t know she had a vocabulary I was the one who read everything but mostly she said she had her hands full just keeping the place clean from all the shit she said I didn’t know a lot of things she said I was good to her she said I didn’t know how to listen but I did. I didn’t have an inner ear infection. So why wouldn’t I get mad? I don’t mean I was mad. Not mad exactly. Upset maybe. I was always exact with language the one I learned I’m not sure which one you’re talking a lot of psychosis, thrombosis, or do I know this. You know I’m a Galitzen, related to Russian princes so you better treat me right. That’s right. Oh and. I was coming back from the street, went to the unemployment office to buy a fat pig apply for an extension and they told me I had one more extension I was upset was working odd jobs at the post office on temporary assignment and picking up extra change by doing jobs for friends I was trying to get enough cash going in the cash flow system of checks and balances but it was touch and go all the way so maybe that’s why she got upset she was smoking up a storm also don’t buy this number she’s Miss Clean she’s upset at me because I can’t keep the closet filled with smoke this daughter crap is just an excuse she’s from this family where even saying hello is a national event happens every few years but she doesn’t say hello to them she doesn’t say nothing but getting back to that day when they dragged me here you remember the day I came in the straitjacket they put me in a straitjacket in my own house in front of my daughter who was going away with her mother and I was never going to see them again because I hit my hand through the window and they said I was trying to assault one of your own in a white uniform not me, they were in white, so that’s why I’m here I scared his ass what was he going to tell me anyway to calm down after flipping living on the street you don’t calm down like that just because some one tells you because there are some things certain people don’t understand take for instance that once twice I died and now there’s a third charm the first time was when I was reading non-stop books about philosophy history and poetry Boris Alekseyevich Gallitzen he’s the one who tutored Peter the First taught him how we’re made of stars and it’s all one language one connection, raisins in a vanilla pudding expanding and I was holding on to infinity in my head got it but you can’t do that humans aren’t built for infinity and everything exploded the lights started bouncing off my head inside outside until I didn’t know where I was anymore except Nikolai Borisovich Gallitzin was Beethoven’s patron, I bet you didn’t know that to write three quartets while I was lying down it’s amazing how a simple concept an idea is powerful thing and I would’ve held on to it and died right there except I woke up the next morning went to the kitchen table to get my Cheerios, the breakfast of champions, you know it’s an old story the second time I was cleaning my insides with aloe drinking nothing but the plant which is green reduced to its palest color my eyes are dark green a segue of green to something else when I was taken by a small party of aliens from the corner of Johnson Street and El Camino they were my ministers upwards past the telephone poles to the top of the World Trade Towers because they traveled very fast and they said that they wanted to impart their knowledge I was ready and one of the few who was crazy enough for them to take away because no one would believe me and they didn’t want to be discovered it was their own cover story, you see, but of course they were making a big joke and after we finished laughing they brought me back down to earth and said adios of course I believe it happened I’m wondering what you have in your own mind here with this shiny equipment and what kind of death you’re wanting me to die when it wasn’t me who blew out the candles oh no I made a wish and that was to keep the home fires burning bright the hearth of learning and all that what are you going to do when the only thing you do is sit and let me talk what kind of dialogue is that even Socrates asked questions but you never say a word like a zombie in a cheap suit jacket I wonder if we shop in the same place I know you don’t have infinity here what are you putting on my head it’s not like a crash helmet it’s not a sea kettle with a blowhole and these little dots you’re drawing on my arm like a cold suitcase what are you going to do with me oh god god god stuffing my mouth and filling my head with razors. Is that the only thing know how to do? Nikolai Dmitreyevich Gallitzin. Step forward!