April 17th, 2009 / 11:58 am

Paragraphs I’d Chew My Way Through a Mold Barn To Have Written (2): Matthew Derby


Super Flat Times, pg. 156, from ‘Instructions’

Before I lost my wife I had only ever hit one other person, and that was in junior high. His face is like a cotton swab in my memory now–he floats there in slow motion, holding a black book bag over his groin outside the locker room. It’s the Sesquicentennial and we’re getting out early to see the tall robots. I remember the scent of a person, the way it changes the air in a room. Louis Burney smelled like hair and lighter fluid–he came from the developments, where kids pissed out their territory and traveled in herds. I hit him in the gut–the reason isn’t so important anymore. The sound, though, is the thing. Like two sounds at once–and one of them is like the whole world just lifting up and folding over.

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