Goo Goo Pavement (Part 4)
I went home. The base of the hill. Just west of the clearing that smelled like rubber. I paced around. Nobody was there. I thought about eating, out of habit. It seemed like something I should do. I always have. But, I wasn’t hungry. I wasn’t thirsty. I wasn’t anything except anxious and confused. I started to climb the hill. Maybe she was on the other side with the fawns. I heard a snap behind me and turned. I saw them crossing the clearing. I called but they didn’t hear. I backtracked down the hill and met them at the base. I ran up to my wife, but she and both of my children walked right past me. I called again, just behind them. Nothing. I stood up tall and then slammed my hooves to the ground. Nothing. They settled into the corner, under the biggest tree and laid down together. They seemed weak. I approached again but they still ignored me. A voice from above said, “They can’t. You don’t. My favorite color. Excuse me. Distant burning. Purple. See you. Tires. Exist.” I didn’t bother to look for the voice. I shouldn’t understand, but I did. I laid down besides my family to rest.
I’m home. It’s too hot today. Summer in Portland didn’t used to get this hot. If I had thought ahead I would have installed central AC, like my neighbors. Maybe this winter, when they have the sales, if I remember. If it still matters. I’m sitting on my bed, sweating, with a copy of Goo Goo Pavement in my hands.
My lawyer got me out of the police station. They weren’t pressing charges. Yet. On the drive back here he told me to reach under the passenger seat. I found a copy of the book there. The same one they showed me inside the station. “Where’d you get this?” I asked. “As I was leaving my office to meet you, a girl was waiting by my car. She insisted I deliver it to you.” “A girl? What girl?” “She wouldn’t give me her name. She was wearing a jumpsuit. It was ripped and painted on with patches and safety pins. Lots of black makeup”
I open the book and flipped to the back page, the author’s bio, and there it is. My bio. Jeremy Lee Wilkins was born in 1973, which according to Wikipedia was “a common year starting on a Monday.” The day after his birth, Spiro Agnew resigned as vice president, but this event has never meant anything to Jeremy. The fact that he shares a birthday with John Lennon has always seemed special to him even though he never liked the Beatles. He has previously lived in Seminole, FL., Atlanta, GA., and Los Angeles, CA. Currently, he is a musician, writer, and digital retoucher living in Portland, OR. He is a snob about being left handed and struggles with a lifelong desire to be a better bowler. I hear the bathroom door open and within seconds Deb walks into the bedroom. “Oh, you’re home. How was the meeting?” “Weird” I said. “It was the police.” “What?” she asked, astonished. I shook my head and closed the book. “What’s that?” I held it up for her to see. Goo Goo Pavement : A Novel for the Crippled Attention Span by Jeremy Wilkins. The book I never wrote.