Monday, March 30, 2009


March 29, 2009 Three Words
Tonight as I sat on the couch at Gram and Libby’s house, I borrowed Lib's laptop to Google the Random Word Generator I use for my word of the day writing ( I allow myself to look at three words and then I choose one of them for my exercise. Lib suggested I try writing something using all three words tonight, and I thought that was a pretty novel suggestion, so here goes (don’t look for any profound meaning in this, folks!):
There is a synthesizer on the shelf in the auditorium of the Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom Hall. It was donated by Carlos before he was disfellowshipped for repeated overt drunkenness. When Carlos was fully active he used to plug it in every Tuesday and Saturday night and stroke the keyboard with songs of praise. Everyone loved it. Young people attended meeting, and even brought their friends, so that the chairs ended up filled and the regular chill in the humid air warmed with the quantity of human furnaces singing full voiced in the large square space. By the end of the night that auditorium sort of smelled like the Jr High after their spring dance, stuffy and warm with the combined aroma of excessive perfume and aftershave mixed with adolescent sweat. There was a lot of joy on those evenings. They opened the windows and turned on the big commercial fan in the back of the room. The air flowed down the aisle and up the short two steps of the stage and blew through Carlos’ jet black hair, giving him the model rock star look that kept the kids coming back. Carlos fired up his synthesizer before the Bible reading began. RayAnn conducted the hymns, interspersed between the readings, her flap of an underarm swinging to the beat as she traced a triangle in the air. The words and the meanings and the music combined to create the rapture all good saints aim for. Carlos was a gift. So was his synthesizer.
When Charlene Dickson saw Carlos outside of Lucky’s Pub for the fifth time, stumbling as he crossed the street to his car, she could no longer hold her tongue and she made it known to the congregation. Broke their hearts to hear of it. They begged him to stop. Then they begged him to get help. Finally they told him to leave, which he did. But he left there, gathering dust in its silence, that slender black and white synthesizer, all potential and nothing more. Potential and remembrance, I suppose. A silent synthesizer on a lonely shelf in the Kingdom Hall.

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