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(​(​(​hairy moth owl 2​)​)​) | prod. Memory Man

from (​(​(​echo chamber​)​)​) by MC Paul Barman

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(((hairy moth owl 2)))

I was chilling in Powell's, chatting with Gary Groth, when I spotted some owls dressed like a hairy moth. I said, “Excuse me Mr Groth, I got to go eavesdrop. I can't believe he's shopping and not asleep in a treetop.” He had a “New York is Book Country” tote bag and, wherever he walked, he left a trail of dope quote tags. I said, “You going to fortune cookie factory or something?” He said, “Whoo-whoo, yes! And my chariot's the Great Pumpkin!” We jumped in. He nod-gestured his driver named Esther Equinox. She dressed like she'd caught sequin-pox. And the squash carriage progressed over creeks and rocks. We coasted up to a treehouse that hosted deep freak-outs. Guests decked out in human costumes exhumed from lost tombs. I kept my eye on Esther as she rolled across the room. Monkeyboard played a funky chord. It occurred to me to check on our ride outside in case anyone was hungry for our gourd. Hunkydory, the girl from nord country drunkly poured from the berry broth cauldron. Hairy Moth Owl lounging with owl kin around him. They played hopscotch. Instead of a rock they threw a topnotch stopped pocket watch. Toss, catch. Caw snatched it from a moss patch. Darkness started to cross-hatch. Then he asked me, “Does your affect and cause match? Do you treat your life with as much care as you give a song? You write for posterity but your kids can't live as long?” I said, “Why were you at the bookstore? I thought you were nocturnal?” He said, “We looked for this. My bound blackboard chalk journal.”

Prairie dog howled as her pup sucked a clogged dairy duct mouthful. Hairy Moth Owl Shorty parked, patient, peaceful. I stripped thorny bark off a branch for bare-tree bow dowel, bent them like a story arc to construct an easel. A productive way to weasel out of answering his question. He put his bound pad of mini chalkboards on the tray. Walked toward it then away. Made a sad sound. Whinnied, like seagulls that orbit the bay. I wanted to talk more, didn't know what to say. He said, “Cat got your tongue? Wrung dry? Stung fly pop flat your lung? Did the rung slat crack and for a hot sec you hung from one hand? Suntanned and clung? You better raise up like you're your own parents. Grown talent alone is prone to clone arrogance. I'm gonna go play now. If you think of something to say, then go and tell Greybrow.” He left me stumped like clear-cut old growth. He jumped, disappeared, steered toward the cold no'th. Greybrow's grey brows looked like my step-grandfather's moustache. Like a cigarette that's just ash. Like someone who don't trust cash. I couldn't tell if he was wake or sleep. Didn't make a peep. Space in front his face deep as a lake or pond floor. I picked up some chalk and drew a blind contour. Mind wandered like a flying condor. When I looked at the board, I was floored by what a blind line'd conjured.
H was the legs.
M was the wings.
O was the head. Ear tuft, crown for kings. Upside down, so tight. Snow white on pitch black, mirrored the low light.


from (​(​(​echo chamber​)​)​), released May 18, 2018


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