Life gushes up and out like water from a geyser. Under the influence of this complex chemical running through my brain, my heart is open, my mind unfettered, so different from my normal life in which the pump is a miserly walnut in a leather sack. Marijuana is legal in Colorado and soon LSD and other psychedelics will be, and heroin and cocaine. Pleasure seekers from around the globe will join us here in the Rockies and the shadows of the Rockies. We will fill Coors Stadium and life will explode into the sun like a new oil well.
Meanwhile, elsewhere, at the minor league ball park, we watch the Modesto Nuts beat the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes, only their second win of the season. Wally the Walnut and Al the Almond prance around the foul lines. We yell Let’s go nuts! I yell as loud as I can and the people sitting nearby keep an eye on me. Some move away—there are plenty of empty seats.
I’ve already sung the national anthem at the top of my lungs, my voice out of tune and ragged. I’m a disabled vet. Not really—I just feel like one. Next to me, John stifles his anger. He’s not mad at me. He’s enjoyed my clowning for the forty years we’ve been friends. His career is killing bugs for farmers. He’s gotten angrier as he’s aged. He’s now a staunch republican. He likes imagining bugs writhing in pain as they die. He blames the poor for everything. He’s not religious but he fumes about abortion. No one should have the right to take another’s life, he says. His beliefs come direct from the right wing hate-mongers he listens to as he drives his car from farm field to farm field. Mexicans are like wrenches, or chemicals.
Balls fly from bats, soar briefly, are caught by outfielders.
M. Krockmalnik Grabois’ poems and fictions have appeared in hundreds of literary magazines in the U.S. and abroad. He is a regular contributor to The Prague Revue, and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize, most recently for his story “Purple Heart” published in The Examined Life in 2012, and for his poem. “Birds,” published in The Blue Hour, 2013. His novel, Two-Headed Dog, based on his work as a clinical psychologist in a state hospital, is available for purchase here.