Missive from the Trash Palace: A Guttermemoir. by D.M. Jerman

It’s Thursday and I'm raging it up at the Trash Palace. The place is like the inside of a plank-and-iron cart, the kind Mexican metal-divers drive up and down alleys with creaky low tires.

My roommate is a horder and shoots slightly more TV than coke.

Here, there’s every thing you could need or want provided you can find it. I need a shower. It’s around here somewhere…

One beer in on a day off almost leaving my phone in the park. Snoozing and sneezing under the sun.

Just discovered the girl who moved in up top is leaving dog poo in the backyard bin under the back stairs. No wonder it smells worse out here than ever.


Trash Palace's air conditioners and other profligate electronics are silent in the wave of unseasonable, unreasonably beautiful indian summer just so hot to keep getting its sweet weather all over my moan and magic. The rush on rich substance can leave you homeless inside.

I wish someone might call. I know I'll see a different "him" this weekend. But I'm kinda lonely.

Picked up a cold from this same old new lover too, who is maybe going to cross my path at a party this weekend. He is auditioning friends like he auditions girlfriends and it is all the brilliant trash of gossip.

Anyway I've already got my get up planned and what I'm gonna take. Camera and dessert and my haute ass. That'll teach 'em. Just no excessive sneezing or dragging along back to bed anyone who can't get behind a filthy house.


Meanwhile I work out what I hope isn't a chest cold and play drums and go to readings and keep seeking hot jams and painting my nails and wondering if I want to go dancing with the weekend with its shrinking moon in tow…

Perverse recollection of a dream climbing up and down buildings, being followed, being watched.

Showing the sycophant from the past about a town rotted thru with old buildings. Always in search of a place to live.

I pick up rubber bands and forget to take photos in the fresh morning light. The train sparks toward dawn over the lush park, and it occurs to me a new bubble wand is in order. I could wear the furry coat again. Do new-ish jeans come first?


At the moment, nothing is really needed. We are all moving soon. Out, away, beyond. Breathing into the blissful minute of concentration tearing free of sunrise. A long walk is a healthy psychic shit. No way you can future any better than I can. Or maybe you can…

What I mean is nothing would be better than getting back yesterday. Keeping the blood flow instead of wearing a bra.

How about the wisdom in a pile of bad habits. The reduced emotive capacity of bad weather. Snow? Snow is a promise. But rain. Rain is a gag. The best bad excuse. A poor joke played while you're on a bike ride. A rude warning.

Then rain is a time-slower and a grit washer. A tight muscle memory sick-day reflex inducer. Unapologetic, and total hell on pizza delivery guys everywhere. People with lamps and chores survive it. People with train stations and paper cups drink it. Acid tears that taste like high school regrets. Leaks. Spring-chewed drip-holes of itself. Rough grooves made rougher. The roof forced to stand for truth, justice, and American warps.


Previously published in the online/print 'zine SKIDMARK.


Woman Near The Light by D.M. Jerman

Once in the not-too-distant past, and again in the not-too-far-flung future, a woman lived in a small house high on a hill in a quiet neighborhood of a small city.

She wasn’t young, but she wasn’t old, and her favorite room in her house was the kitchen. Not because she loved to cook, but because of the light. There was a table in the kitchen and a large lamp that hung close hovered over it from the ceiling. And this lamplight was very warm and pleasing in the nighttime. But the best light came from the daytime in thru the tall picture window beside the table.

It was the light and the view the woman enjoyed so thourally.

From her high house, perfect as a locket with its handful of modest rooms, she sat at her kitchen table, at her window, and gazed out onto the tall hills and the dazzling treeline that sloped lushly across them, leaving a beautiful series of gaps here and there thru which could be seen the pearlescent sparkle of the moving river below, and the pale blue arch of the long steel bridge and its pillars which crossed it.

The unmoving bridge. A fixed point: straddling the river unflaggingly thru all the seasons and their magnificent advances and retreats of color. At dusk, when the light grew weary, the bridge resumed its own glow. City travelers shuffled over and across it in a thankless dance of one or the other direction.

From the window, the woman could close one eye and hold the bridge in her hand, or pinch it between her fingers. The slow black waters beneath it glimmered the bridge’s glow back at itself, and the trees kept their green secrets in to rest.

The days, and the nights, and the woman and the window.

The house and the hillside. The bridge and the river.

The city and the woodlands all. All together in a harmony that had room for itself and its reflection in every way. The reality, and the dream.