Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Bill Floyd

ANTI-MADONNA (or Even Rough Beasts Have Mothers)

Jade lived east of Eden, but the walls of Bethlehem were ever visible on the horizon. The gyre widened, the center loosed, and Jade’s own mother downloaded lots of trendy books onto her Kindle, but never finished reading any of them. Hell, if they were any good someone would make a movie anyway, right? The ladies in her book club agreed, and after all there was always Jade’s brother’s soccer league to think about and school and the doctors and the dentists (even rough beasts’ mothers have cavities) and the bills, you simply wouldn’t believe the bills. Her husband kept saying there was no way they could afford an Ivy League slot without a scholarship of some kind, so Jade spent most of her junior year studying or running around the track outside the Academy or staring at screens or shopping, but she knew something was missing, something dimly remembered that would no longer reappear when she tried to summon it, like a falcon that had flown.

Some would later wonder aloud, as they staggered irradiated and dying across the scorched landscape, how the nominal Father gained entry into their gated community, but of course the security guards manning the gates were subcontractors, you couldn’t trust them not to be dozing or getting high on the job most of the time. Jade was over-worked and under-appreciated and just kind of fed up; hell, she was practically wearing a target on her skinny jeans. It wasn’t that the horn-mantled slickster really took advantage of her, so to speak—he just promised her something it wasn’t technically in his power to give, hardly an original crime where aroused males are concerned. In this case the seduction was sealed when the interloping Omega promised young Jade a slot on a televised talent competition, and it’s every young American’s responsibility to try and become famous for something, right? If anyone had ever bothered to teach the girl how to sing, or dance, or tell a story, the future might’ve been different for all of us.

© Bill Floyd 2012

Bill lives in central North Carolina. His first published novel was called The Killer's Wife and came out in 2008. He's been doing more experimental work since then, but is currently trying for a commercial follow-up so he won't have to go back to a day job.

1 comment:

  1. Jade. A perfect Floydian flawed character, and no other comments!! Something is rotten in the state of the irradiated community.
    This is one of those brief tales that burn a hole in the brain which can best be filled by rereading.


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