The Fruits of Labor


by Peter Runfola

{Parameters} 400 words / begin each section with ‘It is raining.’

It is raining! Screeched the twins Ed & Mary at a moment as in sync with itself as was the DNA which made them the fraternal twins that they were. Look alike? Act alike? Think alike? No. No. And .. a resounding ‘No.’

Nonetheless .. technically and truly … ‘twins’ they were. Enjoying not only the same birthday but .. the same {more or less} birth moment. With Ed being the ‘older and wiser’ of the two by mere minutes.

Two moments in time etched, stamped, tattooed and otherwise engraved in their mom Chrissy’s mind – and body – as indelibly as the physical scars she now bears – and … dammit .. she was going to enjoy these two little graffiti artists responsible for them.

She started chanting .. barely audibly :“Rain rain go away come again some other day …” Then just a wee bit louder .. and a wee bit more. Until .. first, Ed joined in .. then – pretty much just like the moments of their actual birth – Mary, just a scant moment later.

Soon, the entire living room .. from floor to ceiling .. seemed to come alive .. sparkling with the bright, fresh, crispness of an apple just off the tree … two, really .. the twin apples of her eye.

* * * * *

“It is raining! It’s snoring .. the old man is pouring” a voice from the hallway began singing .. louder and louder as it came closer and closer.

“Daddy!” the twins screamed in a unison as perfectly aligned and in tune as was their inception into this world. In other words: more than just a wee tiny bit chaotic Which is to say ‘close, but no cigar.’

“Fee Fi Fo Fum,” Billdaddy – as Chrissy liked to call him – huffed and puffed in his most exaggerated scary Giant voice.

Eliciting one of the – if not ‘thee’ – most precious sounds known in the entire Amalgam of Anything Audible : the frittering, lilting, squeaky clean window offspring of Mr. Magic & Mrs. Love : the laughter of a child.

Saying exactly what it sounds like it is saying .. without, per se, actually saying it: “I LOVE YOU.”

Unlike .. as in the ‘real world’ 99.9% pure or natural’ / ‘may cause violent hiccuping’ or some other ridiculous CYA disclaimer.

No .. a child’s laughter is both 100% natural and 100% disclaimer-free. For the simple, straightforward reason that : they wouldn’t know how to be anything but 100% … its what kids – in general – are: 100%.

And .. in this household … it’s more like 100% cubed.


On the other hand


“Other than that?” asked the man in the crowd with the multi-colored mirrors on his hobnail boots.
“Other than that or on the other hand, there are five fingers.”
“Sorry, sorry .. uncalled for, I know.” But, I’m just having a spot of trouble trying to wrap my head around the fact that it was just your overactive uber-imaginative imagination running away with you.
I mean : ‘Please, Mister Please don’t cut down those trees.’ They’ve been their for eons and eons …through the Revolutionary War .. Suffragettes and the great depression .. Peace Love Understanding and all the tens of thousands of wet, muddy blankets and sleeping bags ruined beyond repair at Yasgurs farm. The Space Shuttle : 3, 2 , 1 & … “Oh My God” In the blink of an eye – what IS .. now merely WAS.
And that’s how it happens, little brother. THIS will make a blip on your radar screen. Surely as will it’s cousin and counterpart: THAT. THEY will do their best to inundate intimidate obfuscate even, now close your eyes as I say this next word: ‘masturbate’ your senses – all five – while simultaneously needling and nudging twisting and shouting .. any and everything they feel might have a fighting chance .. for them to gain access to not only your head and brain but .. your very soul.
For ‘THEY’ have no conscious. No soul. And will do not only ‘anything’ to gain control of such, but indeed ‘everything.’
It’s fate a complis in their twisted imaginations. That THEY will win out. With THEIR imaginations strong and steady and stout. For THEY are indeed YOU. YOU may feel – rightly, even so, at times – that no one else is here .. no one else is in your tree. And most – if not all – would most likely agree.
The others simply would agree to disagree. Regardless, the equation is simultaneously immutable inscrutable and as open to interpretation as is the age-old ‘what is the meaning of life’ question.

That, little brother, I’m sorry I have no answer for but … If you let this resonate .. permeate your person .. you’ll be on your way to understanding all that needs to be understood:
And One and One and One is three.

Oh yeah.

A 151-Proof Liquidation Sale




May 20, 2000 / 2:00 am

Arthur began – ‘finally,’ he whispered to himself – the task of organizing all the tools he’d been collecting over the years. Discovered willy nilly, haphazardly as a wind blown leaf here, there and pretty much every and any where:

  • Markets d’ Flea {as he liked to refer to ‘flea markets’}
  • Garage sales
  • Estate &/ or business liquidations

May 20, 2000 / 10:00 am

Hanging on the pegboard: every bit of 11 different varieties of hammers. Each perfectly in line with its predecessor. Assuring such precision via one of the 16 members in his family of levels. But … no matter the configuration .. that space .. that 3” space at the end of the pegboard. That’s all Arthur could see …

Googling ‘Vintage / Antique Hammers for Sale in the Buffalo, NY area’ .. No matter the size. Just as long as it was old and rusty and worn, And then …

There it was: the tiniest of tiny hammers – sized just right to tap tap tap in a tack. And not much else. “Come here, my lovely’ Arthur fumbled and mumbled into the darkness as he poured himself another shot of another of his favorites: 151 rum.

Pulling up a separate screen. Scrolling through his files until finding the one he was looking for : ‘buythisnow,’ its heading. Copy. Paste. Save. ‘These are just a few of my favorite things,’ Arthur finds himself whistling. His latest find tucked away securely, he continues scrolling .. and drinking.

May 21, 2000 / 12:00 pm

Through his now squinting little wildly insane eyes … screaming at all the other illuminated lovelies dancing before his eyes. ‘I Love You .. come to papa …” The ‘p’ in ‘Papa’ shooting silver strands of viscous 151-laced spittle all over the computer screen now no more than 5 inches from his face … all over their wonderfully, innocently naked selves.

May 21, 2000 / 1:55 am

But Arthur barely noticed. In his headphones the chameleon master, David Bowie singing: I heard, telephones, opera house, favorite melodies. I saw boys, toys, electric irons and TV’s. My brain hurt like a warehouse. It had no room to spare.’

May 21, 2000 / 2:00 am

Then … singing / slurring along … “ Smiling and waving and looking so fine …mumble .. mumble.. Don’t think they knew they were in this song” .. as his neck gave way .. head lowered onto his chest .. that tiny bit of momentum pulling his body along .. as he fell crashing to the floor . Still mumbling the last of Bowie’s tune .. ‘I had to cram so many things to store – everything in there ….

My I Me Me Mine

Out and out outrageously over the top!” Alice blurted out. Gushing and blushing and feeling and bright and happy as if she had swallowed whole the Sun itself in all its glory.
‘Seriously?” This is for me? It’s mine? You mean …?” She managed to barely stutter. Then, trailing off yet even softer: “I’ve wanted one of these since I was 3-years-old. Before that, probably. Since I was an embryo. Since that one night that you & dad, after having talked things over … each of you getting a little toasted on peppermint Schnapps .. no .. no .. no … I”m going to leave it at that. Yeech.”
Which took her mother, Agnes completely off guard. To the point where she literally had to bite the inside of her cheek a tiny bit to stifle the laugh she felt brewing.
“Alice, my lovely lovely Alice,” she started, once the stinging pain subsided and the nascent laugh faded into the background. “I know you have. Of course I do. You’re part of me. My DNA right this second – and every other – coursing through your veins .. your heart … your soul, no less. Of course I’ve known.”
“But, Mom .. how? How did you …” Was all Alice could get out before Agnes started to answer …
“I told you, Love … you’re part of me … you ‘knowing’ something equals me ‘knowing’ the same thing. It’s as simple, yet sublime, as that.” Agnes said in the soft, subdued voice of a churchgoer in the middle of the sermon.
“My precious little miracle. There are but a handful of moments in one’s life where there simply is no answer nor explanation nor even understanding of the ‘How’ or ‘Why’ which birthed said moment. Some things simply ‘Are.’
Agnes reached over to her one and only. Cradled her Mona Lisa face in the palms of her hands. Eyes to eyes. So close the tips of their noses touched. Warm flesh to warm flesh. With her thumb and index finger on her right hand squeezing ever-so-slightly Alice’s left ear, holding her close …
“Yes. My Love. My Treasure. My very Heart and Soul. My I, Me, Me, Mine.
‘This … This Moment … In all it’s likes and loves and overall inherent exquisiteness Is Yours. All Yours.”
“Treasure it. As I do you.’ Agnes whispered as she ever-so-softly kissed her daughter’s forehead.
A solitary tear uniting both of their faces in eternity.


‘Roger: Out & Over’



By Peter Runfola

‘Out.’ Such a tiny almost seemingly insignificant word. How powerful could it possibly be, comprised as it is of simply two vowels and one consonant? Three little letters in total?

But its implications could be nothing less than enormous:

  • “OUT of bounds,” screams the referee
  • “OUT of his bloody mind,” the psychiatrist offers his brief, albeit unprofessional diagnosis
  • “OUTSIDER,” referring to the same kid who just never could quite fit in at school
  • “OUT & OUT Bat shit,” the above psychiatrist’s follow up when asked to be more ‘precise.’

Of course, though, like the great majority of any of the 30 billion or so {a rough estimate, admittedly – as I’ve yet to count them all} words in the English language, its usage may transmogrify into an anti-mirror image of itself depending on context and / or human perception. Such as:

  • “OUTSTANDING Job!,” so says the little league coach to his up & coming superstar
  • “OUT & OVER,” utters the nascent ham radio operator not quite up on said lingo of same
  • “OUTSMARTED,” the competition, says the spelling bee moderator about its winner
  • “OUT & IN,” offers our same ham radio operator regarding his wait time at a particular site

To which, the above-mentioned psychiatrist – who has been closely monitoring the conversations of said ham operator – is becoming increasingly & completely convinced that this boy is in need of some professional help. And, the sooner the better.

For, although the lad in question is quite capable of posting both poignant and pity little diatribes on facebook – whose ‘likes’ help spread his comments akin to an out of control California wildfire – our psychiatrist friend is becoming increasingly alarmed over the state of his young subject’s mindset.

For, he’s seen this precise pattern and amalgamation of utterances and moods on more than one occasion. And is beginning to fear the worst: that this child, this purveyor of technology and angst, anonymity & anti-social behavior may well be on his way to being written up not in his school’s yearbook … but on the front page of his city’s local newspaper.

The signs are there: the outsider nature the youngster conveys, accented with his slight dyslexia, which extrapolated upon, our psychiatrist friend fears could morph the youngster’s status from somewhat anonymous facebook poster – into the infamous face of horror displayed on the news hour of countless tv stations throughout the country … and beyond.

……….. THE END ………..

gnizeens osla nwonk sa

Sneezing …

Anyway, they say she comes on a pale horse,
But I’m sure I hear a train.
Oh boy! I don’t even feel no pain
I guess I must be driving myself insane.

{Genesis / Anyway}

A Whole Body in flux what the fucks up with that?

Sneezing … One of the purely oddest things which visits we human beings

An uncontrollable guffawful & strangely lovely orgasmicesque reaction to an external Pie-in-the-Sky twinkle twinkle little star through the woods and onto Grandmother’s house we go.

As irreverently & whimsically hither & yon unpredictable in both intensity & occurrence as would be wave of Tidals suddenly deciding to both reign in & rain down their collective havoc upon you & you & you .. yeah.

A nighttime – but not always – freight train unfeigned untamed off the tracks as it records its final moments before defenestration occurs & it launches itself onto the crowd below.

Its obligatory aaa-choo somehow getting lost in translation .. instead appearing as an auditory electric shock shock shock around the clock .. elementary – my dear penguin. Elementary. As the birds and the bees the flowers and the trees – & this thing called Love

‘I said .. LOVE? Lord Above .. now she’s trying to trick me in Love’

Sign sign everywhere a sign ..

Breaking up the scenery ..

Breaking my mind …

Do THIS .. Don’t do THAT ..

Can’t you read the sign?

And .. so goes .. the mind of Runfola as he sits here .. no longer sneezing .. but still a tad overwhelmed at all the projects he has at hand – in one phase or another of completion

I need to get up .. make myself another cuppa .. have a smoke or seven .. whilst I contemplate in & amongst this workshop of mine .. this little slice of fuck me Heaven ..

My Heaven Haven …

Zip-A-Dee-Do-Dah-Zippa-Di-Eh …

My oh my .. my L!L …

I’m thinking someone must have snuck me a crazy pill …

In any event … Hi .. Hello .. Wake from thy Sleep … Love ya, L!L …