the other side of the green glass mirror. there are puppies but no dogs. robbers but no cops. which is how i spend my wednesday, the enemy in retreat, our forces cresting the hill & hoisting out flag. till we at last rub the sand from our sleepy eyes & head home tucked together. my thursday evening the enemy's reinforcements show up, throwing themselves against our positions on the high ground in wave after pointless wave. arguments about mimosas, about mainframe hijacking. what a fucking joke. the knots get slippery with blood inside, the gordian mass in my chest. this tumor i call a lung. if it was a bad neighborhood, you would tell your woman not to walk the streets at night. tell princess to stay inside on her canopy bed, drunk on opium & frankenstein's frankincense. when she asks why you don't get mad, just tell the truth. you just...don't. you are basically a shroud inside, a ragged scrap of cloth torn from the angel's robe. kept in a chest along with a lucky cat's eye marble, a spider's molt, a small bottle of airline liquor. poisoned down to the last drop. you don't get angry but you don't get all sewn up like you usually do when she's around, do you? just a hole in the gas tank. really what it is more like is a faulty o-ring in the solid rocket booster.