Monday, April 2, 2007


Polyestra is the author of many stories and poems and screenplays and novels, and is the owner of the Independent Media Room bookstore in Livingston.

Irwin's mother sits alone in her tree house. She puts her cigar out in the “80” written upon her birthday cake with bleeding red icing.

"Foolish boy," she says.

She moves along the rope ladder like a whip snake into the vaulted laundry room. Hanging from her knees she rifles through the fancy pants in the dryer until she retrieves her special "going out" turban. Back in her one-room treehome, she sits before a candle. Her eyes close half-way and she begins to levitate.

"Foolish boy spending my money on this overpriced Bozeman dump," she hisses, hovering a good two feet off the floor. Her astral body peels off and shoots like a bolt over the land to the Berkeley Pit.

"Hello little lovely," she says to the angry wound below. The bright red stinking liquid filling in the massive void stares back at her with words emanating from its burned mouth like: arsenic and sulfuric acid and pH level of 2.5. "Soon, it will be soon."

Her stiff little body hovers along above the road to Uptown, where she meets her friend for lunch.

"He forgot my birthday because he's trying to make another stupid Montana movie," Irwin's mother says to Bob, who is astrally visiting from Jackson Hole.

"The pit is going to breach," Bob says.

"Yes, soon," Irwin's mother says, placing another french fry in her mouth.

"That stretch of track in the mine was especially steep," said a man at the next table. “A panda like that didn't have a chance."

All the dishes in the restaurant began to tinkle and vibrate and tip over edges. The astral travelers shot out of the roof and over to the pit.

"It will melt all the inhabitants of Butte," Bob said.

"We can divert it," Irwin's mother said. "I'll use my turban."

Laser-like rays beamed from the two elders' eyes, lifting a wave of red acid up onto I-90. Ducks and geese flocked from all directions to try to land on the heavy-metal-saturated liquid, but as they watched the Hummers pop and dissolve like effervescent sugar cubes, they turned north to land on the asbestos piles in Shelby instead.

As the last drop of red digestive juices joined the tidal wave heading east on I-90...


Sam Louden said...

One of my favorite mystery nuggets I had laid was the Screaming Panda bit. Presumably it is an important part of the Butte the Musical play. I hoped that someone would explain to me what it was. It must have a panda that screams and it must be of profound importance. Soren's Irish Fairy resurrected the seed and Polyestra teased out a little backstory, ever so casually inlaid in background conversation. I was happy to learn even this little tid-bit of the panda mystery.
To the twelve or so characters one is added and another dormant one activated. Best of all, Action takes place in Butte. One might assert that the Pit as a character is added to the mix much like the Seedy Bean. However, both seem more like mascots of their respective towns than characters. Still to see the pits disgorged contents on the move signaled to me that the machine's tension was powering the plot.
Interestingly, an element of consistency was also established in the repetition of Irwin's forgetfulness. He forgot the pangolin and his anniversary, driving the beast ostensibly Butte-ward as he forgot his mom's birthday, also freeing her to travel to the Mining City. Some comment on the metaphysical implications of an astral body enjoying a real french fry. I suspect that if astral travel is possible why not inter-dimensional manipulation of objects? On the other hand if it is non-sense, what does it matter if the imaginary possibility violates its imaginary laws. I refrain from an opinion due to lack of knowledge on the subject.

Ray Sikorski said...

If we can use "Ghostbusters" as a basis, I seem to recall one of the ghouls invading a very real NYC hot dog cart and devouring its contents.

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