Read an Excerpt
Crab boats run up and down the river, devoid of purpose if you watch them from shore. Not quite able to figure out what the hell they are doing until armed with binoculars, you see these crusty old and young hard working fools reach down and pull up crab pot after crab pot and then you realize the point of these absurd looking boats. High at the bow and low at the stern, surreal in their frothy plow through the water, as if someone painted their pictures on the lens of the binoculars, I’ve been on one of these boats, long ago when I was young, only for a visit, not to work because that would be unthinkable. That’s real honest-to-god backbreaking work. I was out there, merely to visit, to laugh at them silently for I was better than they, smarter than all those fools because I knew how to avoid such work. I was a fool too, haughty, arrogant and unlike them but very much like the end of the crabbing day when all the many baskets of these little monsters were removed from the boat. I have since become as empty as that boat, as empty as the hot, unclouded July evening, not yet as empty as the universe, not yet as empty as the soul of every god they ever told me about, but simply, clearly and sometimes delightfully full of nothing.
Full of nothing. That is me now. I add up to nothing so I am now uncountable and content.
Also, and I almost forgot, I am a crab now. Or, I was a crab. I’m not sure when I was or if I still am because often I confuse the past with the present, as if mentally-challenged. Sometimes, it’s all very confusing anyway and I am so glad that I am sane and straight about the future. Nothing to it. In the future I am dead. It is very comforting. And scary. Relief and fear. Almost as good as rum and coke.
And keep in mind that the past is the future and the future is the past. That leaves us with the present which is an illusion. That leaves us with nothing, which is okay with me.
Yes, I am a crab but I am not the walrus. When I was young, the Beatles insisted on telling me that we were all the walrus and egg man and so on and so on. I sometimes feel as fat as the walrus. Friends and family tell me I am not fat, merely well proportioned but what do they know.