Max

It became more than I conceived. It took a life of its own. If left unchecked the time consumed tic-tac-toeing across a symmetrical grid of personalities became immeasurable. Seconds to hours, hours to weeks. Where did it stop. I was somewhere in the middle of the journey. Couldn’t remember the beginning. Couldn’t remember if there was a point. Had there been, it was dulled to the softest curb, the smoothest dip, the easiest turn tacit erosion raw and chaffing. It wasn’t numb. It was calloused. Second nature breathed this reality on me, it beat warm blood life into existence. It was spliced memories and intentions, sewn together casually so as not to overstate the gravity of choice and impulse. It became its own legacy, and my lusting appetite the voyeur and exhibitionist of the vacuous mores we sank to in our eternal climb for relevance, recognition, understanding, and purpose. The gravity sank to the pit of my groin, tightened scrotum seizing the last life before its release satiated my nerves to crystalline halos, familiar and relieved.

 

“Max” is a vignette written by Michael Aaron Casares. All rights reserved.

Look for more Max Caulfield coming soon.

 

 

Grim’s Wall

He continued to gaze passed his son, his amorphous spirit calm and sullen. He saw in the distance the point where a pin light met the blackness of night, and twilight seeped into blue hues strong and matte. There were no stars to speak of. There were not even remnants, ghosts of the outer graveyard to utter reminiscence  into their mind. There, at the point the sun began to rise and cast fiery pinks and golds into the sky, he saw the promise of this land; he saw opportunity. He’d been taught well, young, his education meticulously curated for optimal discernment and perspective. He couldn’t explain how he received it, after all, he’d never met any of his teachers.

“Build the grim’s wall.” he whispered, half speaking to his son, half to the air.

“That’s what he wants.” he whispered again. His heart held tight, his eyes rolled silent up, his eyelids fluttering. There was something coming in. Something that resonated. He closed his eyes. A dark space suddenly bore corners as he walked forward. His footsteps echoed. He saw before him a black apron. It reminded him of a butcher’s apron, a hard plastic with a shiny veneer. It was unused. He reached to touch, but the wall fell away and he was hovering in the sky watching the world beneath him. He felt he should be frightened, but an instinctual certainty calmed him. Sights came to him; images burst into view and vanished fast. He saw a great upheaval, benign or not irrelevant; the energy spiked. A sun rose. A heart of gold born. The galactic light enveloping him in its warmth. Then the butcher and night. He cleaned. He took out the trash. He erased every fecal smudge and rancid piddle. He painted the roses red.

“Fire.” he whispered as he walked through the daydream, “He’ll bring fire; orange is his favorite color.”

 

Grim’s Wall is a vignette written by Michael Aaron Casares. All rights reserved. 

 

Remittance

It was in observation of manipulation. She used her mental prowess naturally throwing screens at conflict, hiding the truths needed, protecting the secrets accumulated. Her vast trail grew long like the shadows long tails tethered to the horizon sun. Twilight grew in her eyes. She was tired. The attempts at manipulation. The unlauded successes of its unintentional existence. A great book for the counter culture. She’d stood on one side of the line by necessity for so long she was unsure at first how to feel when good fortune brought her to the other side. And how at that time the magnetic draw she fed on increased and strengthened. She had no choice but to stand where she stood. The prewritten law, the contract signed upon (re)initiation, feigned at as a victim’s house, acknowledged the many paths to take, agreed the poisons of the world would overtake the soul if the sun was going to shine on peace and goodwill, to overcome the counter balance incumbent from this game’s inception. The trade off for those who will or will not exist in the heightened world of the future, the point being to assist another dying world, or to learn again. For now her resolve asked for piety, for forgiveness amongst the shadows. Her resolve to adapt to the onslaught of challenge and awkwardness, to grin through once regulated emotions of pain and suffering, to continue transmuting the darkness of the soul, to carry on as a beacon of higher awareness. She had once learned, deep inside a dream, the memory existed. Beyond the sun and galaxy, in a space accessible to opened souls, the maps of many paths reside. If she guided to it with her heart, she’d remember the choices she made; if open she’d easy navigate the river of the soul to starlight and the inner healing of its energetic core.

 

Remittance is written by Michael Aaron Casares. All rights reserved.

Art As Much As Comedy – A Review of Sticks and Stones by Dave Chappelle

chappelle

Dave Chappelle’s “Sticks and Stones” on Netflix.

When it comes to Hollywood people like Dave Chappelle, I learned about him just like many teens were introduced to him in the mid 90’s, by way of a jeering comedy all about the one taboo that mattered at that time: weed. Half-Baked, an instant cult-classic about cannabis culture lambasted joke after recklessly high joke. It’s all the guys seemed to care or talk about at school, so naturally it would become part of my library of reach when referring to Chappelle’s work. Fast forward nigh on twenty years, and the showman’s landscape has changed. Of course there is the “Cancel Culture,” which is relevant to many stars,  but there is so much more. The #metoo culture, the racist culture,  the PC police, and the phantoms of white supremacy, global warming, conspiring Russians, and Nazi Hitler. Regardless of all these sexy, racy (no pun intended) topics, there is no way an audience member does not feel even slightly awkward and uneasy as Chappelle traipses through the topic of pedophilia and Epstein. In fact the opening salvo just vomits Epstein all over the audience, forcing them to refamiliarize themselves with that faint memory of a name spoken once or twice on the cable news networks. And what now? This name is falling out of Dave’s mouth? What comedian starts a show talking about a serial child rapist that “committed suicide” while gleefully hopeful for a sentencing deal when finally faced with real justice. It makes no sense. Either way, Chappelle does not side with or incite anything by talking about Epstein. The punch line, a thought-full and particular narrative, rounds out to the stoic topic of convo in a quip so sardonic it had me loudly laughing!

Anyway, pedophilia, top of mind. He talks about Michael Jackson, Epstein, R. Kelly. Some of these jokes are quite controversial, and, yet, somehow it seems that there could be nothing more so controversial than talking about the “alphabet people.” The LGBTQ…. I’ve oft heard that there is some sort of Gay Mafia, you know that some one like Kevin Spacey may have been associated with. But, in the end, there seems to be a mafia for everyone. So whatever or whomever these individuals supposedly are, one has to wonder why the myth prevails. So much so Dave must retaliate. Some of the jokes he told about the dynamics and personalities of the “alphabet people” were nigh spot on from my personal experience, but the ones that didn’t land, I could understand where he’d get the idea. As a member of the “Alphabet People,” I didn’t find anything offensive or hurtful in his show. Perhaps the most controversial, though, was the way he laid into the “T”s, as we know: transexuals. Nevertheless, the most important thing that stands out about this comedy act, to me, is the way Chappelle takes his listless audience from topic-to-controversial-topic, in the most lewd, politically incorrect, rampage, ushering them from genuine laughter, to edge the of discomfort, through thought-provoking and fleeting enlightenment, to fits of applause.

I appreciate that Chappelle is able to take on such major topics in a way not many comedians can or do (a la George Carlin or Bill Hicks). Dave is, obviously, no stranger to controversary, and has stayed away from Hollywood for many years, most recently from what I understand, the second time he’d been away in as many years. Still, I can’t help but feel that Chappelle doesn’t just get in trouble with minority groups and descent people, he probably gets in trouble with producers, politicians and the likes. He ambles in and out of topics like racism, abortion, and even Trump all while jarring the subconscious. Speaking of haranguing the people in power,  in one of the epilogues to the show, where Dave lets audience members ask questions, he goes into this story about how Chris Tucker visited with him and brought his ‘friends’ over, namely: Kamala Harris, the then governor of California, and some important news anchor.  Barrack Obama was a focal character of this yarn, and again appeared later in the show to round out the punchlines. Albeit many of these individuals are now mixed up in some stuff in Washington, the Epstein case being among one of the primary leads. But even addressing a topic like gun control can go either way at the dinner table, and ultimately, leave a bad taste in ones mouth. And let’s face it, as funny as his solution to gun control is, it’s still controversial to the virtuously sensitive. Anyway, this is masterful art. I think one of the most brilliant comedic pieces ever written that addresses present societal conditions in a remarkable commentary the audience can’t believe it agrees.

 

Sticks and Stones by Dave Chappelle, an Netflix Comedy Event, is available for viewing now.

“Comedy As Much As Art: A Review of ‘Sticks and Stones’ by Dave Chappelle,” is written by Michael Aaron Casares. All rights reserved. 

 

 

“A Quiet Day at School” by Michael Aaron Casares, Austin, TX

I found this on the internet. It was written about 2010, and published in 2011. If I had to go back and re-write it, I would. I feels a bit sophomoric (pun intended) in retrospect. But, it manages to convey my message. Enjoy.

itacacontest

topic: 9/11 medium: TEXT

as submitted for the “9/11” Open Call

I was a sophomore.
It was after first period,
my second period class
was also homeroom
and lunch was next
so the T.V. was playing
in every classroom
from that point on.
As we all watched CNN,
FOX or MSNBC or local news
for updates and live minute-to-minute
coverage of the twin towers under attack
we wondered, Was it a bomb?
Did they shoot a missile into the building?
The reporter said it was a—
I saw on live television the second tower struck
by a winged entity shadowy and fast.
A brilliant plume of black dust and fire,
a chorus of gasps and murmurs.
People were afraid, because America
didn’t get attacked, and blood never spilled
on its soils. The fear ran deep.
Nobody had much to say that day,
we children more confused,
our teachers composed,
some…

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Resurrection Apollo

He glared sharply into the sky. Without a star or moon in sight, he was certain the sky glared back at him. He disapproved of it. At long last he’d become tired of it. It’s been dark for too long, he thought. He didn’t know where it came from, or why. He was perplexed at how deep the sky became. He seemed to remember a time like this before, and marveled how the shrouded moon seemed to veil the entire sky opaque. Still, there was a time when the single moon cast a silver sheen so luminous, it seemed the land and his surroundings glowed in that hazy white. There were times the moon was accompanied by a legion of stars, the multitude a shimmering carpet to the naked eye, ghostly yet familiar. Still, there was another. It changed the land all together. It brought a light so bright it made shadows hide in the crooks of their masters, and brought clarity and definition. This is what he wanted as the blackness surrounded his head. Daybreak was coming, he sensed as denser grew the shroud. The forces at work always worked their hardest before the sun’s return.

 

“Resurrection Apollo” is written by Michael Aaron Casares. All rights reserved.