Friday, June 24, 2016


This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, places, or actual events is purely coincidental.

The room was dark and smoky. It smelt of gloom. A neon sign over the bar was buzzing, a monotone F, I think. Well, I'm sure actually.

Across the room, an attractive lady was sitting at a table by herself. She was chain smoking long cigarettes and drinking, something green. Not a grasshopper, though. At least I don't think so. A grasshopper is served in something like a martini glass. She was drinking from a tall tumbler, and the liquid looked thick, like nectar. For a moment, I wondered if she had ordered some kind of healthy concoction, like one of those "smoothies" that they serve in the gym.

The drink didn't matter. What mattered was the beehive hairdo she was wearing. It was piled on top of her head like a fleece of mottled black wool. Down along both sides, by her ears, there were little curls hanging like puffs of black rainclouds. I couldn't take my eyes off her.

Her face had a serene look about it. She seemed to know something the rest of us didn't. Some secret knowledge of something reckless, something that made her so out of place amidst the hustlers and the profanity. I'm not sure exactly when I fell in love with her, but something in me ached to be with her.

When she caught my stare, she smiled demurely. Her eyelids fluttered like translucent wings. Just once or twice, and then she looked away.

I was getting restless. I could feel sweat beading on my forehead. I wiped it away with the palm of my hand, but I knew my allergies to almost everything were kicking in. I could almost feel tiny welts beginning to bubble up under my skin. Then, the room started to become smaller and smaller. I knew I'd have to leave soon, if only to catch a breath of fresh air outside. So, I called over the waitress and asked her what my tab was. She pulled the ashtray away and dumped it on her tray. "Already looked after," she dead-panned. She glanced over her shoulder at the beehive lady and added, "Lady over there has you covered."

Her rooms were small, but neatly kept, everything slotted in hexagonal wicker baskets. On one wall, she had a montage of wooden flowers. Some were painted bright colours, mostly yellows and golds, often framed with green outlines. Others were charcoal black, as if they had been resurrected from a fire for display. One brandished what appeared to be a long stamen that curled almost obscenely upward.

I wondered what her obsession was. I drifted around the room, and my curiosity left me wondering if she didn't practise some kind of strange voodoo. My thoughts began to spin off into the catacombs of trepidation, when I felt her behind me. She spun me around, and her long thin fingers began unbuckling my pants. I relaxed. She pushed me onto a wispy grey couch, and I watched as her beehive of hair descended down and over me. I touched it gently, but it was like my fingers had sent a bolt of electricity through her body. She began to shudder, almost as if she were having convulsions, and she fell to the floor, her hands tearing her clothes off her thin body.

"Now," she said quietly, "right here and now."

Afterwards, the night came crashing in on me. I needed sleep, but she was mapping my body with her soft fingers.

"Too many scars," she whispered.

"Life," I murmured, "is full of scars."

"Mmmm," she buzzed, "you are a poet, I think."

"No," I said quietly, "I was once, but the words abandoned me long ago. I have not written for years."

"Will you write for me? Will you remember tonight in a poem?"

"I'm afraid all I could muster would be worthless clichés. To be a poet, you must be able to dream. I have lost my dreams."

"A poet is always a poet," she insisted, as she bent over to kiss me. Her long tongue flicked between my lips. There was a sweet sharpness to it.

Then, she suddenly pushed me away, stood up and walked across the room. I watched her closely, watched her naked body move through the air. She was like honey pouring through the cool air. Slow and sticky. I ached for her again.

When she reached the bathroom door, she turned and asked, "Do you want to take a shower?"

"With you?" I mumbled eagerly, somewhat surprised.

"No, I only bathe. My hair ..." her thought trailed off into emptiness.

"Your hair?" I wondered.

"Yes, I can't get my hair wet."

I looked at her with what must have been a stunned expression.

"Do you never wash your hair?" I blurted.

"No," she replied in a peevish voice. "No, it is sacred."

I was somewhat taken aback. For a moment, I was expecting the Looney Tunes characters to come barreling out of the television. Then, I began to laugh. For whatever reason, I laughed so hard that I lost my breath, and my laughter tumbled into a jazz-like fusion of snorts and wheezes.

Finally, I managed to gag out, "What makes it sacred?"

She walked over to me. She spun her lithe body around mine, her legs curling in behind my knees, as she lifted herself off the floor. She stared intensely into my eyes, and her green irises flared into a bright amber as if they had caught fire. Something deep inside her seared through me, as if she were looking directly into my soul. I became aroused. I pulled her over my body, as close as I could possibly have her.

"My hair is sacred," she whispered in my ear with a strange guttural click, "because it is full of bees."

In the next instant, a swarm of bees covered me. I could feel their sharp stings, could see them buzz over my face. In just seconds, a thick blanket of burning agony crisscrossed my body.

I threw her off me.

"What the fuck?" I yelled, my hands flailing at the teeming air.

"Exactly," she growled in a deep, dog-eared voice. "You have fucked their queen, and now, my sweet ambrosia lover... now ..."




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