Nov 27, 2016

Possible Final 4 Words from The Gilmore Girls If It Was a Different Kind of Show Entirely

[Rory]
The rest is silence.

She dies, Paris cradling her head. Paris is in shock and shattered, but holds it together because someone must. The gazebo is scattered with bodies. A car screeches to a halt, doors opening to reveal Chilton headmaster Charleston. He surveys the carnage and shares an anguished look with Paris.

CUT TO BLACK


[Morey]
Now, do you believe?

Lorelai looks searchingly at Morey, who slowly puts his sunglasses back on. The world seems to ripple, if only for a moment. Lorelai looks over at Luke's, then back at Morey, but he isn't there anymore. Morey has turned into Kirk. As Lorelai looks around, all of the residents of Stars Hollow are turning into Kirk. All the Kirks begin running at Lorelai, who looks down at the coffee cup she is holding, which explodes into a cloud of unintelligible words (though we potentially see the word "poodles" in the mixture). The camera pulls skyward and we're looking down at Lorelai with all the Kirks about to engulf her. She bends her knees and takes off, flying right past the camera, her trendy parka flapping by and wiping to a blackout.



[Taylor Doose]
THIS. IS. STARS. HOLLOW!

His scream echoes across the green expanse of the town square. The warm breath of the Stars Hollow reenactment crew is seen in the chilly dusk, muskets at the ready. The boys are scared. The men are too, but have put on a warrior's face to mask their insecurities. A beat of silence, the calm before the storm. Then, the army of orcs rushes forward and war cries from both sides fill the air. The clash is inevitable and only moments away. Suddenly, a lone man rushes forward to meet them - Luke Danes.

CUT TO BLACK


[Dean]
It was a pleasure.

He pulls Rory close and the two stare at each other. They both want to kiss, but can't. This moment is too important. They settle on a deep hug. Rory walks over to the other terminal, key in hand. They both insert their keys, take a deep breath, and share one last smoldering look at each other. Dean nods, almost imperceptibly. The camera zooms out, past the bunker walls, past the facade of the destroyed diner, past the black helicopters circling Stars Hollow and holds as we hear the sound of keys turning and a growing high-pitched noise.

FADE TO WHITE


[Luke]
There's no more coffee.

Luke's voice trembles ever so slightly, but Lorelai hears it. She looks up from the half-filled cup into Luke's terrified face. Behind her, outside, a car crashes into another immediately causing a giant fireball. Word has gotten out. Everyone knows. Lorelai leaps over the counter, grabs Luke, and the two of them huddle together out of sight. There's the sound of breaking glass, screams, and an unseen body slumps above the two of them. Blood runs down the counter. The two kiss desperately.

CUT TO BLACK


[Miss Patty]
They all did it.

The assembled culprits try to protest, but Patty shushes them. The camera pans and lingers a bit over each member of the gang, as they exchange a glance with Patty. Luke is angry but proud. Lorelai is in shock. Michel is disgusted, but mostly with himself for getting caught. Sookie smiles, trying to make the best of things. Jess laughs and nods, giving credit to Miss Patty where it's due. The back of the police van closes on them and Miss Patty walks to her car. She gets in, starts it, and hits the open road. As she pulls onto the freeway, we see a sign telling us that she's leaving Stars Hollow. She pulls up a secret compartment between the seats in her car and a bag is seen, overflowing with diamonds. Miss Patty laughs to herself.

FADE TO BLACK


[Emily]
Time to go back.

She taps the screen, entering coordinates. A planet flickers up on the screen and though there's less landmass than normal, it is recognizable as Earth. A query blinks on the screen: CONFIRM? Emily looks around at her family. Lorelai rolls her eyes, as if to say, all right already. Rory giddily claps. Richard can't be bothered to look up from his paper. Emily sighs contentedly and hits the large button. We hear the sounds of the FTL engines spinning up. The camera zooms out from the control room, out through the door of Al's Pancake World, into the biodome above Stars Hollow, out into a wide shot of the exploratory fleet, just in time to catch each ship blinking out as its drive activates.

FADE TO BLACK


[Paris]
It's always been you.

Rory looks at her, sudden understanding in her eyes. She is flooded with emotion. We see quick flashes of many interactions that Paris and Rory have had over the past decade with this new lens. Paris is standing there, stuck, vulnerable, once again on the verge of being rejected. Rory shifts her feet, unsure, deciding. She looks up. She's decided. She steps forward, embraces Paris, and kisses her deeply. There's the sound of shutters as we see a photos from a photo album: a celebratory wedding, Lorelai and Sookie crying; Rory and Paris looking frazzled near a bassinet; an adorable toddler on Paris's shoulders as Rory jokingly offers the little one a coffee cup.

FADE TO BLACK


[Kirk]
It was always me.

He takes off the robe, the mask, and stands there, unmasked. It's Kirk. Of course it is, it's always been Kirk. His face is twisted in hatred and anger. He advances on the Gilmore girls with his machete, as they back away from him through the hallways of the mansion. Rory stumbles over Emily's body, and Lorelai grabs her, flings her backwards into the corner of the living room. Kirk is upon them, his machete in Lorelai's neck. She gurgles, then falls. A close-up on Rory, cowering in the corner, hands in front of her face. We see Kirk's legs as he steps into the frame, and the machete drops into view, still bloody. A droplet of blood falls onto the pristine white carpet.


CUT TO BLACK

Nov 26, 2016

Assorted Poems from the Past Few Months

Fall of a Sparrow

When I did chance to happen on this crew,
a team composed of stars pluck’d from the sky,
within my blood did fiery hope renew
to stake our fortune ere we all must die.

How noble was our work – how true, how swift!
Our sprints did show our speed from week to week
that all as one our many hands did lift
a motley matching mound to mountain peak.

But fickle fate did cleft our hearts in twain,
The ending sprawled before us that we see,
and no amount of hearts and hearts in chain
can realign to corp’rate strategy.

And yet our time, our team, the work begot
cannot be quick erased or soon forgot.


3 Limericks

We are living in times that seem dire,
like we're stuck in a great dumpster fire.
But when darkness takes hold,
inner light makes us bold.
May we all be Frodo of the Shire.

There once was a girl they called Ruby
who solved mysteries like that dog Scooby.
The hardest one she had
was the Dane who seemed sad.
She told him the answer was: to be!

There was once a young boy who did roar
when he was at the grocery store.
The strangers would all stare,
but they were unaware
he's a secret velociraptor.

Sep 9, 2016

What I'm Thinking When You're Eating Dinner

Leaning forward over the purple plastic plate -
It's like pink! It's close in the rainbow
and you buy it, you own it, you now ask for
sister colors where one can serve
as the other when your brother
demands the pink or moves too quickly
like the prince of cats
snatches, dashes, grins, guilty.

Leaning forward to scoop with your purple spoon -
It has to match! Of course it does
how can we even think of eating
if the spoon differs in shade
from the plate
what a catastrophe
a disaster, a meltdown
you can't imagine anything worse.
I can, of course, I do, but you
don't have to and if this is it
well, that's cool.

Leaning forward, the edges of your hair slip past your ears -
Oh no! My hair! And there's ketchup on the ends now
red drops clinging to the edge of you
and you scowl and point and yowl
for a paper towel.
How can we even think of eating
when there's ketchup in your hair
and it's a fair point.
Wiped off, you smile, I smile
you raise your spoon above your head.

Leaning forward, I stand because I cannot stand -
Avocado! What? I cannot stand how perfect you are,
how I sometimes want to squeeze you Steinbeck-style
a bunny, an innocent, a funny little girl
who calls me out when the hug's too long,
the kiss too strong.
How how how how from such meat
such imperfection such imitation as myself
were you made?

Leaning back, lips smacking contentment -
I'm full! And maybe you are and maybe you're not
and maybe I am and maybe.

Aug 27, 2016

Brothers (Part 1)

Recode Casper’s turbocycle flew down the 660, weaving in and out of the normal mess of hovercabs. His helmet blared an incessant alarm and he could feel the pain in his leg spreading. His brother was dying.

The cycle hit the maximum safe velocity for the 660 and the automatic speed control kicked in, disabling the accelerator. Recode swore as a jolt of pain shot up his left side, causing him to inadvertently swerve towards the sidewalk. The cycle corrected itself, though not before a mechanical voice admonished him for potentially dangerous driving practices.

The hospital building rose over the horizon - a towering spiral of calming curves - and Recode guessed that it was still a good 20 minutes away, at least at cruising speed. That would be too long; he could feel it. Cody would be dead by then, if the numbness in his thigh was any indication.

He could have left earlier, of course. He could have stopped surfing the metastream as soon as he felt that heaviness in his leg. He could have called his parents to see if anything was wrong. He could have hurried to his turbocycle with purpose and haste instead of standing outside his door with his helmet on, tracking his vitals, pausing, waiting. For what? To see if this was another drill, another test?

The message had flashed across his helmet as he stood next to his cycle, staring at the numbers that told him how alive he was: "HOSPITAL ASAP. -C" It was the kind of message that declared its sincerity with its brevity; this was no drill, and yet Recode found himself glued to the sidewalk outside his apartment. He hadn't gotten onto the road until the first spasms of pain had started to radiate out from his foot.

"Fine," Recode muttered under his breath. He reached down, pried open a panel on the side of the cycle, and pulled out the network card. He stuck the card into a pocket in his jacket as several warning lights lit up on his dashboard. The cycle was slowing down.

From another pocket, he retrieved a similar looking card, jammed it into the slot, and replaced the panel cover. He was glad he had kept his unlicensed card from his street racing days. It meant that he could get to the hospital almost twice as fast, though he couldn't count on the collision avoidance system anymore. The system was designed for the government-mandated safe speeds with maybe an extra 10% leeway. Recode hit the accelerator until his speedometer hit the maximum value and then rolled over to simply show all zeroes.

He arrived at the hospital exhilarated and exhausted. He hadn't been on the roads at those speeds for years - his parents had made him pay for a new cycle when he'd gotten his confiscated after a run-in with the police, and it had literally taken him years to pay it off. During that time, the rest of the family had kept a wary eye on him.

Recode's left side of his body, however, was by this point almost completely without feeling. He stumbled into the hospital, sometimes dragging his leg behind him and making every effort to stay on his feet.

He approached the front desk and a sweet looking young man gestured for him to step up to the scanner. Recode placed his forehead on the scanner, which lightly beeped as it registered his presence. There was a quick flash over his eyes. The orderly glanced at his screen.

"All right. Casper - room 6. Oh, are you the clone?"

-

"What wrong, mom?" His parents were wearing such serious expressions; even Cody was sitting nervously on the couch. Recode's father patted the seat in between him and Cody.

"Come sit with us, Reco," he said with a voice that began calmly but cracked right at the end of the sentence. Recode found his way over to the couch and planted himself between Cody and his dad.

His mother continued to stand in front of the three of them, taking small steps this way and that. The two adults began to speak in spurts, each attempting to pick up the conversation when the other dropped it.

"We know you've started to have health class at school," began his dad.
His mom took a turn. "That you've been learning about-"
"About babies. And men and women and -"
"Sex and pregnancy and how babies grow-"

Recode felt ill. He glanced over at Cody who had averted his gaze from the rest of the family and decided to focus on a bookcase on the other side of the room. His dad barreled on.

"But there's something you should know, Reco, about how you grew up-"
"You didn't grow in my belly like most babies. You're different. I mean, sort of-"
"What your mom means is that you and Cody didn't exactly - well, your mom and I didn't-"
"We couldn't have another baby. But the hospital referred us to a nearby lab that said-"
"They said they would take a bit of Cody and give him a brother that was just like him-"
"And we thought, well, of course! That sounds perfect. And you were - you were perfect."
"But that's why you're so connected, why you look so much like each other but Cody's two years older."
"The scientists said you might be able to feel what Cody is feeling, especially when he's hurting, and I think that's why recently you've been asking-"
"Like when he broke his arm doing tricks on his cycle, why you thought you'd hurt your arm, too."

Recode stared at his family. He opened his mouth, but couldn't think of what to say. Cody shook his head. "I'm going to my room," he mumbled, then left.

"We know it's a lot to take in," his mom said, trying to sound reassuring.
"But we wanted you to know. We still love you. And you're not Cody." His dad paused, considering this statement. "I mean, you have a part of him in you, but that's what brothers are, right?"

Recode wasn't so sure, but he nodded anyway.

-

He was used to it by now, of course. Clones were still fairly rare. Voluntary cloning had only gotten more expensive and the myriad of genetic risks that science had uncovered made Recode's relatively uneventful medical life the exception. Most people were aware that clones were among the general populace, but most had never known one - or at least, the ones they knew had never found cause to reveal the fact.

So Recode was used to the orderly's eyes growing ever-so-slightly before he professionally assumed as neutral a gaze as possible. He had seen it before, in the woman's face who had helped him fill out his financial aid document, which required the same disclosure that had popped up in his medical info. He had seen it every time he traveled out of the country for work, in the eyebrows of the immigration agent that checked his passport upon return.

He was used to it by now, but never quite escaped feeling like an animal in a zoo for that brief moment when the other person's eyes filled with surprise and curiosity and - sometimes - suspicion. He wordlessly took the nametag from the orderly, shuffled to room 6, and waited for the tag to beep and the door to open.

His parents were on him immediately, all hugs and tears. Cody lay on the bed, attached to various medical apparatuses. He smiled weakly at Recode, before a spasm contorted his face - his body - and arched his back for a moment. Recode felt it and pulled away from his parents at the same moment, putting a hand on a nearby wall to steady himself.

The three of them stepped outside on dad's suggestion, leaving a nurse with Cody.

"Is he going to be OK?" Recode asked. It was an unnecessary question. He already knew the answer, but felt like it was the best opening salvo in what was sure to be a dismal conversation.

"No," his dad said - almost shouted. "No," he said once again, more calmly. "Well, maybe. His heart is failing.The doctor's aren't sure why, but they are sure it'll give up some time in the next day or so."

Recode turned to his mom, who was quietly sobbing. His dad continued, "Thanks for coming."

"Of course," Recode replied. "We're a family."

"Yes," his dad said, his eyes widening in much the same way the orderly's had when looking at Recode a few minutes ago. "About that. We'd like you to consider-" His dad trailed off, attempting to push the next few reluctant words out of his mouth.

Recode's mother completed the thought for him. "Consider giving your brother your heart."

Jul 4, 2016

Nacho Rex

Two bites into the first fried nacho ball
I know this is no mistake. It is a revelation,
a flavor revolution, a texture portmanteau
that ends with a cheese plasma core
the dairy cherry on top of this county fair Benedict.

A bite into the second fried nacho ball
I consider that I may have bitten off
more than I can chew, but I can chew
a lot so I forge onward - ever onward.

The third fried nacho ball sits alone,
issues its bright orange challenge
to my face, to my mouth, to my honor.

I accept, of course, because I am
no coward. No, I am the hero
devourer of worlds
King of fried nachos.

May 22, 2016

The Second Date

When I was eight years old, I caught a leprechaun.

He was taller than I thought he'd be - almost my height. I remember him looking like a child with a grown-up's face, dressed in loose clothing. He didn't wear green, except for a bright green feather in his cap. He said his name was Ril.

Catching him was quite the task. I had made an entirely inappropriately sized trap that in hindsight would have only caught a dormouse. I was hiding behind my bed when Ril climbed into my window, and broke the trap with a single step. The pieces ended up slicing through the fabric of his shoe, and when he ventured into my closet to look for a replacement, I vaulted over my bed to slam the closet door and sit against it so the leprechaun couldn't escape.

He was quite agitated at first, and thrashed around the closet for a clip, knocking down hangers and kicking shoes this way and that. Soon, he calmed down and - as the stories my teacher had read to me that week in class had taught me - offered me three wishes.

I immediately wished that I didn't have a sister, which didn't make sense, because as I finished the sentence, I realized I didn't have a sister. I had never had one - I was an only child. The voice from the closet assured me that it was done, and that I had two more wishes, but I was furious at myself for having wasted a wish on a sister that had never existed.

Instead of making another wish, I stood up and opened the door. The light hit the inside of the closet and the leprechaun blinked, looking into my eyes at amazement. In a flash, he was running past me, jumping onto my bed, bouncing higher than I had ever bounced, headed straight for the window.

I shouted at him, wished that I had never opened that closet door, but he was gone. I ran to the window and looked around, but there was no sign of him. No green footsteps, no trail to follow. I sat down resigned on my bed, and that's when I heard it.

A rustle from inside my closet. I looked over and noticed that the closet door was closed. And there! Was the handle turning? I slammed back against the door, heard another bump from inside - or perhaps it was my body against the door - and waited.

After a few minutes, I spoke through the doorway, asking Ril if he was there. There was no response, but I knew he was. I knew that this wish had worked, and that I now had one more.

So, yes, Ruth, there is a very good reason why that dresser is in front of that door. And, yes, that's why I have full confidence when I say I can literally make any wish of yours come true. So, let's have it. What's your wish?

May 1, 2016

Things That I Could Get Away with Saying If I Was a Victorian Gentleman Suitor

1.
You have pierced my heart, Miss Sparrow, and I fear that I cannot now - nor may ever be able to - remove you from that most vital organ without doing irreparable damage as a consequence. You are lodged there permanently, and it is my burden to carry you with me for all the remaining days.

2.
You are blameless, Jane. Does one urge the sun to stop shining because one perspires? Does one command a stream to stop its course so as to retrieve a bauble that floats away? No, and neither should any man need you to acquit your smiles or shield your eyes. The fault, dear Jane, lies in my weakness and not in your strength. You must shine and I must bear it accordingly.

3.
My fondness for you grows day upon day, and I have more than once put pen to paper in a foolhardy attempt to use the written word as my ally in lovemaking. And yet! The words I write are nonsense, as like a child trying on the suits he finds in his father's bureau when left alone. I feel as if I have climbed the beanstalk and know not how to act. Your opinion dwarfs all other opinions, your grace overshadows all else, and your face instills in me a sense of awe that strikes me dumb. Speak, Diana, and restore my words to me.

4.
I find it impossible to imagine you as my wife, little Rose, and I find it impossible to imagine you as anything else. I did not come to Rook House looking for romance, and yet romance has found me. You are strange and ineffable and quite insufferable and have bound up my soul inexcusably in my short time here. Had I but heeded my prayers and avoided stopping here, I should have saved both of us a mountain of troubles and also doomed us both to an unhappy life. The truth of it is, Rose, that there is only one fact that we can seem to agree on, and it is that a marriage between us is inevitable, and I have never been one to stand in the way of inevitability.

5.
I'm not dancing with her. She's a peasant and the color in her cheeks is no maiden's blush but more likely from the heat of a kitchen fire. Good God, man, don't be daft. I'm a Duke.

Apr 23, 2016

#Shakespeare400

It's Shakespeare's 400th deathday! Here is a small collection of sonnets.

I wrote the first one today.
The second is from when our cat Daisy died.
The third is one I wrote in college for a poetry class.


Words, Words, Words
In days of youth when dreams were fledgling still
and fortune smiled not on my face or hair,
when those that dared to gaze would scowl until
their judgement they pronounced: more plain than fair.
Within that selfsame time when I did doubt
that all my qualities would ever sum
to any meat amount, I learned about
how Shakespeare wrangled language, made it hum
with sparks and passion ere I had not known.
This man was not renowned for strength he showed
or comely brow. No! From his pen had grown
his peers' respect amid the words he sowed.
From his example, I - dear reader - claim:
if one can write, all else is but a game.

Bicycle Built for Two
You were my present back before it all
became about string cheese and potty time,
a furry mewing skittish scuttling ball.
We welcomed you, feline partner in crime.And with the passage of the months, the years
steadfast and so aloof you did remain
in that November week when Princess fears
ripped through the house, a cliche brake-less train.
You cared not for human propriety
and chose to poop and pee where you did want,
raising a civil notoriety
each rebel yell a kind of loving taunt.
Each flower in the field can claim the prize,
but other than our Daisy, all are lies.

When half asleep 
When half asleep in sheep pajamas, late
at night or just before sunrise, you turn
and toss my hand from off your breast, create
inside my head some inkling of concern.
As I begin to ask myself what dreams
are cooking in your subconscious stewpot,
my own bubbles over with panicked screams
of woe, anguish, and others I’ve forgot.
But then you push your body back against
mine, like two twins together again at
last.  From your mouth a whisper of nonsense
about Jell-O kittens and that is that.
I realize, as I drift off to slumber

that two and one can be the same number.

Mar 26, 2016

It's Hard to Say No When Jesus Wants to Hang Out

"Do not be afraid," Jesus says as he plops himself
down on the couch, an exhausted sigh floating up
toward heaven but catching itself on the stucco ceiling,
"for I bring you multiple bags of Bugles."
He tosses them, one two three four -
probably two bags more than necessary
but who am I to tell Jesus how many
bags of Bugles are too many -
onto the coffee table.
He reaches for the remote, pushes a few buttons
ineffectively, realizes his mistake and picks up
the PS4 controller, muttering his annoyance.
"I'm going to put on an episode of Jessica Jones,
OK?" he asks then starts the episode
without waiting for my response.
It's fine, of course.

"It's Easter tomorrow," I say
making small talk
making any talk I can
but Jesus just grunts, rolls his eyes
like he's heard it all before.
"I don't believe in you," I say
and I regret it or maybe I don't but it's too late.
I want to leap forward and catch my words but they're gone.
"I don't need you here," I say
"I don't want you here," I say
and things are getting real
because Jesus pauses Jessica Jones
and I shout - when did I start shouting -
"why did you buy so many bags of Bugles?"

He touches my shoulder and I'm suddenly
aware of how much sadness he contains,
how his ocean so completely engulfs my thimble
and I want to apologize but I can't
because Jesus is talking.
"Sometimes shitty things happen
and the only thing I can do
is show that I know you like Bugles.
You don't need to understand.
You don't want to understand.
That's why I'm here."

And Jesus is crying now
so ugly and so beautiful
and I kind of want to lick his face
because what do his tears taste like?
But that's creepy, that's super weird
so I smile and nod and unpause Jessica Jones
and open a bag of Bugles.

Mar 20, 2016

Soliloquy

The necessary training of our lives comes not from the teachers
of our youth nor the extended speech of our fathers,
noble in their causes yet ultimately forgotten.
No! It comes oft too late or too slowly
from the simple passage of time, that fickle friend.
And so I find myself these few days as a man torn
between heaven and hell, limbs attached to a collection
of carriages, growing unintentionally taller each hour.
I cannot deny that I am filled with a great melancholy
that finds root in the inevitable losses humans bear,
but never comprehend 'til faced with a mirror'd countenance
so unlike our own that sadness's nature is revealed.
And yet, am I not blessed with the love of angels
in form not unlike my own?
Do I not yet have my own health and fortune
and the promise of the sun yet returning?
For a man may wish his time astride this earth be easy,
banishing every frowning rain cloud that dares appear.
Is not such a life fraught with the peril of the first snowfall?
Would not one stray flake undo such a man?
'Tis better then to face our troubles and answer
blow for blow when the winds of strife do come our way.