...although I'm not willing to rule out hallucinogens.
We have a glider in the backyard. Not the kind with wings, but something like a bench that swings. Chloe and me were hanging out in the yard, swinging up and back, waiting for Alice and Christopher to return from Guitar lessons, when we decided to make up a really weird story.
Picture the two of us slouching in the glider, feet sticking out, staring up at the sky, saying a bunch of nonsense--and then writing it down and sketching pics for it. Here you go: (Click the pics to see them larger)
JUNE ON THE MOON
June made a face at the maple tree where a million June Bugs hovered and buzzed, and then glared at one that wanted to be her friend. June bugs love people—especially the ones who don't like them. June thought they were sick, and so she made a friend of one that bumped into her as she ran to the sidewalk.
The June Bug landed on June's shoulder. She raised a hand to crush it because they made such a lovely crunchy sound and oozed pale goop and stank like corn burned on the BBQ. Her fingers stiffened and her palm swept down, and then the June Bug made a sound. More than a sound. It lifted its head and sang.
June, June, you can't carry a tune, one good jump and you'll land on the moon.
June froze. A talking bug could mean something big. The June Bug pinched her shoulder, and June jumped, and then she blinked, and in that blink she had traveled all the way to the moon.
June kicked up gray dust, and made a thousand footprints across barren craters. She followed the line of the sun as it moved in a sharp bright line over the moon's surface. She kept one foot in night and one in day as the light followed her all the way.
June, June, you can't carry a tune, wouldn't it fun to be a loon?
A bird or a crazy person?
I couldn't say, said the June Bug, and started over.
June, June, you can't carry a tune, isn't it time to head for the saloon?
June found herself stomping on the wooden boards outside swinging doors. She swung them in, western style, and stepped into the loud smoky room with clinking glasses, and a hundred card games, and dancers and cowboys with guns slung low, elbows on the bar, watching everyone who stepped into Sam's Saloon.
Sam looked over at June with concern. "You got to run. You got to hide!" He said. "Because I'm-going-to-hurt-you Page is looking for you inside. She's in town, robbing banks, and she doesn't mean to stop."
Just then, I'm-going-to-hurt-you Page walked into the saloon with her pointy boots and her guns drawn. She said, "June, my name's I'm-going-to-hurt-you Page and yer gonna get up and sing on that there stage."
To make her point she shot into the floor at June's feet to make her dance, and June had no choice but to climb the steps up onto the stage. June, in a rage, opened her mouth, and sang.
Cowboys covered their ears. Cowboys two states over covered their ears. Glasses shattered. The mirror behind Sam broke into a million pieces. The old wooden bar splintered and shuddered and turned to sawdust. Sam's hairpiece curled into knots. Chandeliers fell from the ceiling. Dogs turned into cats. Lightning whimpered and hid behind the clouds. The sun dimmed. I'm-going-to-hurt-you Page's guns cracked and fell to the floor. The shingles flew off the roof of the saloon. Windows broke in neighboring countries. Muddy streets dried up. Dry streets went muddy.
I'm-going-to-hurt-you Page shrieked as loud as she could, "I give up! I'm leaving town, and won't ever be back as long as that horrible singer is around!" And with that, she jumped on her horse and left a trail of dust.
June stopped and the townspeople cheered, although what made them happier—that June's song was over or Page was gone—was never clear. The June Bug on her shoulder pulled the stoppers from his ears and sang.
June, June, you can't carry a tune, we have to go now, but we'll be back soon.
Okay, I told you it was weird.
For those who don't know, Chloe's my eleven year old daughter. Here's our classic silly author pic--doing our best David Foster Wallace's. I dug this one out of an old post.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ALICE!