Night Needn’t Be

When it comes to counting blessings…

Night Needn’t Be 

By Tyler Lucas Mobley

Every time I see you I leave with more to say, 

I’m beginning to feel it could take a lifetime

to explain. I knew before you told me there was 

something different about you. Takes courage 

to mention aliens and simulation theory at a 

work orientation. What exactly do you mean by 

black and white when describing yourself? 

The braces were easy to overlook, setting your 

rubber bands down on a napkin to eat. Our 

schedules overlapped seldom enough for me to

stay engaged and not park myself at the frontdesk

whenever possible. You’d signed on for the graveyard, 

when it was time you vanished into the night. A blessing

in the form of mustache and pocket square moved 

me to the evenings. Those last fifteen minutes were 

the best, you’d still be rubbing your eyes awake as 

I wore the day’s work. Things started small out of necessity,

always a surprise to see you. I’d check in to see how

you were doing, the nights could get lonely. I had you

read my Cosmic Lottery piece trying to prove my interest

in aliens was genuine. Said to have experiences few 

others had, other dimensions find you interesting as well.   

“Really the nature of the soul and DNA, you don’t 

say?” We began to see more of each other then 

you disappeared for a week, there was word of

an ambulance. That night I was on my way out 

convinced I’d have to wait another to see you,

when you appeared across the lobby, I stopped

in my tracks as you continued in yours. Your

small delicate steps I deemed part of a careful

coffee walk trying not to spill were just your natural 

gait. I held the back office door then raised a brow 

at the four sugars you poured in, you weren’t messing 

around, they must’ve played a part. You returned 

refreshed and renewed and suggested I watch the show

Cosmic Disclosure, I started the free Gaia trial jumping 

at the chance to relate. Intergalactic warfare recalled 

through hypnosis, I had my doubts. When I told you 

I watched your smile lift us both off the ground, my

heart melted at your little jump of excitement from 

behind the front desk. I fell into your depths became

caught in your curls, summoned by the mystery of your

magic. I’d wait for you in the parking lot hearing your 

heavy sigh before your heels clicked off into the night. 

Someone left a copy of Dune at the stand, intrigued 

I stashed it in a cabinet and forgot about it. The week

of the premiere you told me it was your favorite book. 

“Hey remember that big book someone left here,” I 

asked Jaden, “do you know where it went?”  “Yeah 

it’s right here,” bending to retrieve it from where I’d

left it. Gifting it to you since you lost your copy, I made 

sure to say how I started to audio version since your

boyfriend never cracked it. The morning my feelings 

made there way to words I got the letter from human 

resources, they were forcing those of us out, our days 

were numbered. That night I wanted to show you what 

I wrote, I hadn’t anticipated fighting for your attention.

Not wanting to ask you out if front of another

co-worker, when you answered the phone I wrote my

number on a piece of paper and left it with you.

That weekend your text never came, I did the 

corn maze alone. You arrived early the following 

Monday catching me at the time clocks on

my way out. You tried texting but I gave you

the wrong number, how did I manage that? 

We exchanged and confirmed contacts, you

let me know the same fate had been made for

you, what were we to do? The weird planet in

the sky video you sent, you’d been thinking 

of me. I caught wind of a concert at the bowl,

“would you go with me?” I asked out of the blue. 

You’d have to skip work, “screw it they’re firing

us anyway.” An hour before we left you still hadn’t

received your test results. You handed a Mcdonald’s

receipt to the test site lady when she asked for your

appointment ticket. There you were walking 

toward me, it was really happening our first night 

just the two of us. Jeans and a sweatshirt as casual 

as I’d seen you. On the drive north the clouds held 

similar conditions as the video you sent where

sunlight burst through somewhere else entirely,

making our lone star appear as two.

The night was ours, deciding on the Mexican 

blanket in case the chill became too much.

I wanted to show you off to my friends, you 

wanted to stay behind. Our hands found each other’s 

under the blanket, sharing warmth under a gentle

sea fog. I said the guitar solo came on too loud you

didn’t feel so. When the headlinder came on the 

blanket came off, on our feet the stage transformed 

into spaceships ready for takeoff, a callback to our

first conversation. The night carried us away aboard

saucers dancing through a musical atmosphere, a disco

ball spun the light of all things good and present. 

You put my glasses on for one final look at the stage.  

How you held the stair rail on a cautious decent, 

knowing your clumsy tendencies, I cherished your

choice admiring what made you you. Taking every 

opportunity to pick a fuzz from your hair, wanting to

know the volume of your curls. On the drive home the

song I played for you put you to sleep. I tried another 

off the The Evil One hoping you’d understand, but you 

questioned how we are real in the night. Embraced in 

the parking structure you shy’d from my intent, but 

still texted in thanks of a goodnight. We made it to the 

corn maze, within a minute I pushed past a protruding 

stock that recoiled into your face, no way to start a date. 

I likened you to the Las Vegas shooter when you told me 

how you played GTA V, something I could’ve kept to 

myself. I pushed you off your crouch at Bank of Books

since you’d expressed a similar urge at the concert, but

thought better of it. We shared silence over lunch, my 

first question revealed my unease. Taking your mini 

Altoid I offered to replace it with one of normal size. 

After I took you under the big fig tree on Chestnut, 

you looked up to grasp it’s growth, I couldn’t take my 

eyes off you still hungry for your lips. I pulled you 

into me, if time stood still I wouldn’t have wondered 

why. You’d stop to pick up pennies like Louis Prima, 

all sunshine and ravioli. The Christmas music you 

enjoyed was your own, a filthy Frosty and jingle cock 

as season’s greetings. The story of your hip hop dance 

outbreak, the sorrow and the pity. We sat on a promenade 

planter holding each other tender watching ocean waves, 

was this a beginning or an end? In the spot of before with

my chin resting on your curls, I had to say how everything

felt right in the world. We said our goodbyes, I asked when

I’d see you again, your answer trailed off unsure of yourself. 

“Should old acquaintance be forgot?” may it all fall into place.

Let us carry on always to share the night that needn’t be,

just remember when you’re in my arms. 

P.S. Covid warden Wolf quit and went to Disneyland (trading five stars for fantasy).

Our Own Devices

An afternoon of adventure.

Our Own Devices 

By Tyler Lucas Mobley 

Dip into nothing

skipping town, 

Hawaiian slice 

pineapple underground. 

Arms no longer arms, 

but propellers motoring 

into any desired ripple

for a more simple eternity. 

Ocean collaboration

with visual dilation, no

hermit left unshelled from 

an encompassing meld.

Every stone turned from

Bikini Bottom. 

Wooing day satisfies night, 

their love a sight for our eyes.

A light reminder for the striving, 

be back tomorrow for the same 

lesson said the golden teacher.  

Clicking Reel

Clicking Reel 

By Tyler Mobley

Letting out line, mind a clicking reel, wonky

film projector tempting realities to

sprout from skull and politely ask the present 

for a dance, only to ruin her and take her place.  

Sea surface storms about how the heart wants 

if skin would show it, left with throwing rocks 

to ripple the calm, trusting it will return when 

our minds are ready. 

Marble monks on city hall contain all things and 

none with how they hold themselves,

conversing behind our backs, you’d swear on

their rolling eyes, unmoved movers of sacred bust.

Falling as a precious drop onto vacant dune, 

giving life to dust in a flood of visions, that

may last the next rain. 

All things looking of You

All things looking of You

By Tyler Mobley 

  

Ripples trail a seaward vessel

spreading curves, a rhythm we

rolled once or twice. 

Dewy garden mornings find web woven 

portraits by Picasso legged spiders, 

“a fly for the effort.” 

Birds gather in honor,

Roman starlings perform under twilight,

fluttering human forms sing songs

of dedication, they knew 

you always listened. 

A name glimpsed in bubble

breathes held on a tub floor,

before bursting nevermore. 

A lasting adieu when

all things looking of you. 

Oyster Jollies

Oyster Jollies

By Tyler Mobley

At it again an ole used to be somebody’s sailor goes walkin between a pair of century old dampers carryin martini olive eyes, soot curls, and a dirty mouth she’d put to use if it weren’t holdin such a cute little grin. A lump of wood at bars’ end lifts a shout, “ain’t you got some business somewhere Ms.?” 

The jingle of her boots fade, silence arm wrestles the room and wins, her head snaps to the call quicker than a wave in a whip nearly drawing the air from the room with the unanimous gasp it demanded from the crowd, silence pursed either as an effect of no soul dare speak or because a vacuum prevented sound to be carried throughout the room, nobody knew nobody cared.

Each step squashing peeps before they happen, she arrives face to face with Lumber leaned up against the bar, rising for a moment from his seat as if a flame were lit underneath his teepee.

Madam looks up, catching him with even more of a crack in her lips than before, “now what business would that be Mr. Forest?” leaning in she could smell fear turn to shit. 

Log cabin falls into convulsive stutters emanating from his lower chip spreading down his race circuit. Mumbles of, “ma ma ma ma ma” again and again interrupted by sudden jerks stifling each proceeding attempt winding up like a little car about to be launched across a kitchen floor.   

“Ahh hell!” she slaps him not too hard across the face breaking the broken recordness arresting his body landing him back in his seat and before he knows much of anything he spat out, “ma acorns!”

A sigh of relief escapes from his chopstick mouth as though having needed to lose an erection before a passing train could knock it off, that sent vapor spittles into her face in a bourbon breeze. 

Throwing back her head in a great “HA!” forcing anything not nailed down into the walls. Tables and chairs slide into leather breeches, glass explodes and falls in subtle applause about the room like an ensemble of fairies hitting pots and pans. Olive eyes narrow on Tinder Box with regained composure she reaches into her vest. Eyes shift around the room curious to the fact that her hand had passed up the shooter astride a rather well rounded hip. 

From the vest she pulls a small bronze cylinder and removes the cap in a slow twist. Holding it before Match Stick, in a way he could note the color, which was unusual. Containing an element of glitter magnified by the truest amethyst, emitting a spectrum such that anemones would fight for it’s hue, lilies tell petal-tales of it’s shade, it drives monkeys bananas, and sends unicorns out shopping where they discover in passing a mirror their horns’ held the color all along. 

“What they servin you here, seventh sin?” Arms a measure animated. “How bout I freshen you up?” 

A gleaming nub grows under her touch, then guides the rocket stick towards Saw Dust’s face.

“Hold still now, you haven’t want me to get this wrong.” Reaching behind Splinter’s head to keep fast his shuttering chin.

We have touchdown. From a deliberate hand eights roll onto his wood chips, a trace resembling a trail of a psychedelic snail after several crossing of his balustrade; inducing a most peculiar spell. Building with each completed pass Plank’s corks pucker ever more. 

In a sudden pressure release eyelids flutter his harmonica hums and steam blows out his ears. Withdrawing the wand and placing it back in her vest, she takes a step back to admire her work n play horse. Block’s head a ringing coo coo clock, his body a black and white image against the vortex drawn on his castle. 

Placing a boot in his dividers then before going any further she turns to address the room, “now if any of you ladies want a ride you’re gunna have to wait your turn.” Pressing on his stirrup her legs swing over his shelves for shoulders she saddles on his music box, taking up fingers of each hand as reins, feeling like bark bits in her grip. 

For an imperceptible amount of time her business carried on in such a comfortable manner you’d think she were alone. Wedging into a joist her charged body expands a field of static potential gathered from forces present and beyond.    

Breaking from her rhythm for a look at the faces frozen into the wall, some still pinned by furniture. 

“Do yall really wanna see what this pony can do?” 

They weren’t sure, nobody answered. Madam twists his ear shooting a puff of steam down the bar, Jenga teetering on edge. On a well lathered face glimpsed between flickering hips patrons saw eyelids batting at thousands of rpms, a pair of bee stung bruises blowing hard brass, a tongue zapping that could turn a toad envy green, the corrupting color covering his complexion resembled a tumbleweed turn tropical fish. 

The lights in his jukebox went out right as hers finished, both rattling in opposite ways. Leaving, months later, suspicions in those who witnessed the event as to whether his spirit had been sucked out by her answering machine like some phone booth in The Matrix. Only this here is the nineteenth century so make of it what you will. 

The ride met its end, in dismount she leaps off brushing against his chopping block, the force of her impact jostling a dead Stump loose from his seat falling to kindling on the floor. 

Giving herself a once over she smiles down at the Pollock piece between her thighs and runs a finger up her seam front. In passing she drags the dabbed finger across the cheek of a still giant, neither spoke. 

Within moments a jackhammer awakens inside the giant inducing in him a tapping twister with rumba manners, the bright cheek streak metastasizing his body through Tasmanian whirl.  

The audience fixed on another transformation hadn’t noticed her slip out, and let out a still murmur when a cow hatted and curled head popped her peach back through century old wooden doors, “Y’all be careful with this one, damn near lost my pearls,” with a yodeling chuckle, “so long.” 

With that patrons peeled off walls, and found themselves dumbfounded around the rutabaga vibrator they knew as Earl. 

Á la Dylan Thomas

 

 

Our days together, countless consexutive days. It started with us on the ground, a moment when something is so funny your legs can no longer support you.  We rolled in laughter, bellies aching, you had to be there.  Rainy days sent us around the island, driving in circles, beautiful hour long circles. She was Rapa nui, and I was Rio; we lived in our adventures, out and back and gone again.  The sleeping bag that was too small for one person we shared, aligned under stars on a beach, she was my constellation.  Warm clear waters were home, for miles and miles we danced; I was her anchor in rough seas.  We tripped into a sunrise, found ourselves upon a volcanic glow, hurled ourselves off cliffs, all in good fun.  My arms cocooned her all too comfortably on a moonlit mountain. She returned the favor on a sailing night, a brief recreation of an iconic Titanic scene.  With her I was the “King of the world.”  That’s what love does, I took her to new heights, she showed me new lows. You never know what you have till it’s gone.  No, it’s the choices we make that turn a man to stone,  “Do not go gentle into that good night.”