Love

Love

Love's Not Blind, but Often Bored by Aborigen

The Daoists believed that life revolves around a tenuous balance of equal yet

opposite forces: good vs. bad, light vs. dark, dominance vs. submission, etc.

They exemplify this balance in the yin/yang symbol common to their art

deco. For them, the forces of the world spin around each other, off-setting each

other with their polar influences yet keeping the whole of reality perfectly

balanced one way or another.

The Druids, on the other hand, believed that perfect balance equals

stagnation, that a constant back-and-forth dynamic eventually cancels itself out

and reaches a terminus. To foster growth and development they throw a third

element into the mixture, like a rock tossed up against a spinning plate. The

balance careens and strains to right itself, and in so doing becomes stronger,

develops itself, becomes more than it once was. Three was a sacred number to the

Druids and endlessly recurs throughout their culture.

Which of them was right? Who can say? A good Daoist might say both of them

are right, being equal and opposing answers, whereas a Druid might suggest

there's a third option yet overlooked...

As the sun moved behind the earth, in relation to a certain midwestern city

in the United States of America, February 13th became February 14th. Valentine's

Day, named in honor of an ancient priest who wed soldiers to women against the

emperor's will, and was summarily executed for this offense. This is the day

people use to recognize and honor their love and affection for each other... or

to drink themselves blind due to the lack of that love in their life. In one

part of this city a young man dozed in the arms of two cheap floozies he'd

partied with the night before; in another area, a young woman cried herself to

sleep after losing this man in a heated phone conversation. Two sides of the

same Valentinian coin; the Daoist grins smugly as nature once again reaffirms

his position.

The Druid, on the other hand, indicates skyward where a very bored Goddess of

Love (of no particular culture or theology) reclines upon a pink, fluffy cloud.

Her huge, goddess-proportionate feet reach upwards into the heavens, wrangling

with stars between Her slender toes; Her brown, dredlocked hair hangs over the

cloud, pinpoints of starlight glinting off the gold cuffs interspersed

throughout Her locks. Her eyes loll melodramatically and Her hands hang limp at

her sides. The Goddess of Love was bored beyond all human capacity, and needed

some entertainment.

The earth rolled silently along its path, and its motion caught Her eye. A

rosy aura wreathed the orb to remind Her of this special holiday. Grateful for

something to do She scanned in closer to observe the denizens of this ball of

mud; they'd entertained Her well in the past, they might be good for a laugh

now.

She observed with approval the revelry of couples in love, holding hands,

toasting each other, blah-dee-blah, all that good stuff. At least people hadn't

forgotten all that over the course of the millennia. But then a soft weeping

caught Her attention, and Her gaze zoomed in towards this certain midwestern

town to observe its source.

Ashley awoke with terrible stomach cramps. It felt like someone had punched

her in the stomach with a garden rake and unceremoniously yanked her intestines

out across her bedroom. She couldn't identify the dull ache, guessing it had to

do with her abdominals clenching repeatedly during her fierce crying jag the

previous night. She cursed Brad under her breath as she stumbled off to the

kitchen, looking for food to assuage the terrible aching emptiness within.

Chewing Her lip, the Goddess of Love refocused her vision to include the

emotional spectrum. Immediately a red line of passion drew from the anguished

young woman to the male slut still asleep beneath the floozies. A deep growl

resonated from within Her throat and, reaching across the astral plane, She

slowly extracted Brad's consciousness from his body. The body, of course, could

not withstand the trauma and expired. It would be a couple more hours before the

corpse would cool enough to wake the sorority sisters, who would be thrown into

a panic and cripple themselves falling down the stairs, but that's another

story. No, all we're concerned with is the carriage of Brad's soul across the

dozen blocks between his apartment and Ashley's, the dozing spirit cradled in

the soft palms of the Goddess of Love. It was to be the last comfort he would

know for quite a while.

Sitting down heavily, Ashley's firm young buttocks smacked into the cushion

of the hardwood chair in her kitchen. Being that Brad had just been reincarnated

into this cushion, as per the Goddess of Love's sensibilities, this was quite a

rude awakening for him. Her buttocks covered his face, in his brief flash of

consciousness, squishing him back and forth as she settled into her chair. He

died promptly thereafter.

Ashley, still sobbing, wiped the saline from her eyes to pour herself a bowl

of Radial Oaties for breakfast. The intense longing she felt for Brad, her

partner of two and a half years, manifested as an incredible hunger welling deep

within her, and her immediate response was to seek out comfort food. She grew up

with Radial Oaties, and listening to them ring in the bowl as she poured brought

her back to the years of growing up with her family.

Being that Radial Oaties can't scream, she had no idea that Brad had been

instantly reincarnated into one of the Oaties. Brad's bewilderment at seeing

some dozen of his brethren racing out of a large waxed paper bag and into a

ceramic bowl was only outdone by rolling to his side to observe an enormous

ex-girlfriend looming above him. Staring in shock (one of the things Radial

Oaties do best, besides the Dead Man's Float) he was struck by her red, puffy

eyes and her case of the sniffles. Though he broke up with her to sleep with

other women, Brad still missed the cute little traits she possessed. When she

was sad she would sniffle quietly and it touched his heart; even now, he wanted

to wrap his arms around her and rest her head upon his shoulder until her spirit

was settled. Instead, he was jarred from his reverie by a deluge of ice-cold

low-fat milk.

Panic began to set in as his lactic landscape heaved to and fro, and the air

whooshed with the great metal spoon ripping through the atmosphere as

Ashley picked it up off the table. Her nipples poked at the flannel nightgown

she wore to bed, standing proudly upon modest breasts. Nipples almost as large

as he was now, he realized, staring at her chest that yet shuddered with her

sobs. The great metal spoon tore through his sky and struck just to his left,

scattering his compatriots across the bowl, then heaving him upwards with a

dozen luckless Oaties. His heart would have raced at this point, were he still

in possession of one, as the gingham patterned nightgown flew past his vision,

cresting with a collar of lace, which led to Ashley's ivory neck and soft

jawline. Curls of chestnut hair framed the enormous head, and then her pink,

full lips parted to reveal a glistening cavern of jagged ivory teeth, a

throbbing tongue, and a bottomless chasm beyond. Again, screaming a silent Oatie

scream, Brad was shoveled into the gaping maw, tumbling over other Oaties. He

rolled over her tongue for a moment, her hundreds of papillae tickling him

mercilessly, before getting himself caught between her right premolars and

shattered into crumbs. Brad died instantly, again.

He was still reeling with shock when his soul was tenderly inserted into the

next Radial Oatie.

The Goddess of Love can be a wonderful friend when one pursues Her earnestly

and does credit to that which She stands for. But woe betide the fool who makes

a mockery of Her church, especially when she's paying attention. Especially when

she's bored. The entire morning went like this: Brad gets reincarnated as a

particle of cereal; Ashley eats him; Brad dies; repeat. Brad had never

experienced such an emotionally taxing breakfast before in his life. One moment

he's floating in the milk (progressively soggier with each incarnation); the

next he's racing up towards his ex-girlfriend's sweet, sweet lips and being

dumped upon her tongue. If he was lucky he managed to remain some moments upon

her tongue while all the other Oaties were dashed and mangled effortlessly. The

echo of their bodies being rent asunder thundered in his ears, as his grainy

body rose and fell with every twitch of the young woman's tongue. Sometimes he

was swallowed whole, in Ashley's haste to fill up the empty space in her life.

This entailed a long, rambling descent through a satiny, quivering esophagus in

pitch blackness. Sometimes it was a freefall into her stomach; sometimes he'd

catch onto the side of a slimy wall of tissue, and the next sortie of cereal and

milk would wash him off. At any rate, he ended up falling through the narrow,

black passageway and land upon the corpses of those who had gone before him, the

oaty mess churning in her stomach acid. That was the worst for him, to be

dissolved and broken down by that slow process, and it got no easier to

experience each time he endured it.

At length Ashley finished her breakfast. Wiping her runny nose on a paper

napkin, she carried her bowl to the sink and put away the Radial Oaties and

milk. As her bare feet padded heavily across the linoleum floor, she noted a

slight, marginal lessening of her longing for her treacherous ex-boyfriend. Not

much, but a little. She figured she was just full, and trotted off to the

bedroom to dress for her day.

Brad's next incarnations were a bizarre pastiche of Ashley's working day. He

was a particle of bacteria aloft in her front yard as she walked up and inhaled

him. One moment he was just floating along, staring bewilderedly at the world

pitching and keening about him; the next, he heard a rushing sound and caught a

brief glimpse of Ashley's face, made-up for work, huge as a billboard and

approaching rapidly. Uttering a teeny bacterial yelp he rode a jet stream

straight up her right nostril. He was plunged into darkness as thick, coarse

hair raked his body. He finally found some rest on the mucous lining of her

sinus and slowly suffused himself into the tender, pink skin, when suddenly he

was surrounded by white blood cells and got the snot beat out of him. Once

again, Brad died.

He came back as a fleck of tree bark, from the oak in Ashley's front yard.

The cellular activity was sufficient to sustain his consciousness for a few

minutes, and his life consisted of looking up to see Ashley's sneaker descend

upon him, mashing him against the thin layer of ice coating the sidewalk, and

finding himself adhered to the sole of her shoe. She mashed and mangled him

through the snow on the way to her car, pulping him a little bit more each time

she stepped upon his tiny soul vessel. She really gave him hell, being stuck to

her right shoe - she drove an automatic, and crushed him with every rapid

acceleration and hasty brake. He died by the time she made it to work.

He came back as a small ball of butterscotch hard candy, and enjoyed a few

minutes of respite in a fancy cellophane wrapper. If he'd bothered to know his

ex-girlfriend more intimately he might have remembered that butterscotch

happened to be her favorite flavor: she snatched him up between enormous, soft

fingertips as he rested in the candy dish at the receptionist's desk. She

stripped him quickly and popped him into her mouth without a second thought. As

she greeted her coworkers and ran through her email she slowly eroded his candy

body over her tongue over the next 20 minutes. Brad would've gotten dizzy and

sick if he'd been in possession of a metabolism that permitted that. Instead,

she jockeyed his spherical self around her mouth, rolling him off her tongue

until he collided with the fencework of her teeth. Chips of him flew off at

times; many times he was deafened by her roaring voice as she answered phone

calls. Ultimately, however, her mighty jaws scissored open one last time and her

tongue rolled him onto her molars, and his body neatly cracked in half as she

pliared him to death.

He was several more bacteria after that, dying in similar ways as before.

The Goddess of Love rolled on Her pink cloud, laughing uproariously in the

heavens to witness the spectacle. Sometimes She would guide Brad into a new

body; sometimes She would simply let the Fates decide in what part of her daily

path he would appear. The results were always hilarious, to Her, and She was so

glad She didn't sleep in this morning.

Finally lunchtime rolled around and Ashley felt in the mood for something

light. She made her way to the food court next to her building and ordered a

salad. Brad was never much for vegetables, she noted, and she would enjoy being

able to eat a nice salad without him commenting on how good red meat felt to

tear with one's teeth, how savory its juices ran over his tongue and down his

throat. She realized she began to feel much better about breaking up, though of

course she would miss having someone around... Still, she could certainly find

someone better than that knuckle-dragger, couldn't she? The thought titillated

her.

Brad was still wrestling with the concept of being turned into a large leaf

of lettuce. He felt crippled as he realized he could no longer photosynthesize,

something he never knew he needed to do before. All wondering was brought to a

close, however, as Ashley's plastic fork descended like vengeance from the

heavens and speared crudely through his wide, leafy body. Agony shot through his

senses yet through the haze of pain he was able to see the familiar passage of

events yet again: racing up past those firm, delicious breasts, past her

graceful, swanlike neck, and getting stuffed inside her hot, humid mouth. As

lettuce, his body was broken into a dozen pieces and shredded by incisors and

molars alike, and his consciousness tended to last longer in that body. He

lasted slightly less in the body of black olives, slowly ground to a pulp

between her teeth and sucked into her throat. Death was almost instant as her

merciless ivory teeth crunched his shredded carrot incarnations, but there was

so much shredded carrot that Brad lasted almost as long as the lettuce, in

total.

Finally, the salad finished, Ashley wiped the specks of Brad off the corners

of her mouth and stepped into the bathroom to floss shreds of Brad from between

her teeth. Brad slowly began to break down and nourish her body, and he was

dazzled by the sensation of being distributed throughout multifarious blood

vessels and strained through various organs. He'd never felt closer to her in

his life, and he truly, deeply regretted not having had more to do with her -

not because of the five hours of torment and punishment in her mouth, but

because now he truly understood who she was on the inside and he wanted more of

it.

It was not to be: her body's natural processes took what they needed from

Brad and rejected the rest. It clung to the fibrous strands of Brad's other

bodies and gathered in sweet Ashley's colon. Brad slowly pulled himself together

and formed one short, stout lump of feces, which Ashley saw fit to expel. Brad

caught one last glimpse of his ex-girlfriend's firm young ass as he was dashed

into the chilling waters and flushed into the sewer.

Yet even this was not the end; even if Ashley had had her fill of Brad,

filled up the Brad-shaped hole in her life, the Goddess of Love was not done by

a longshot. Brad retained his consciousness as a lump of shit and figured he was

safe now, because who ate that kind of stuff? Floating down a dark river far

beneath the city, he realized who: dozens of cockroaches and other bugs swam out

to greet him, tearing his body apart and assimilating him into their own

metabolisms, and he retained his consciousness. Those bugs spawned and brought

new bugs into the world, and Brad was an aware part of each of them. Endlessly,

maddeningly this went on, and Brad wondered if this was what it meant to finally

become one with the universe...

The Daoists and the Druids may not agree on some large points, but they do

come to meet on smaller, finer details. They know enough to respect Love.

END

Love

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