I was home when the painter first came by. I knew someone was at the door because the dog was barking. I opened it and out she went. She greeted the visitor by leaping to his waist. People who come to the door have to deal with this, she's the security system. I say this to the painter but it doesn't matter. He's scratching her behind the ears. He says my landlord's name and mentions touch-ups. He steps back to take in the house. He compliments it like I built it, and pulls out his wallet for a business card. They're stuck together, a stack of them. The dog has taken off into the neighbor's yard. I wasn't paying attention, now she's not responding to me calling her back inside. I admire that about her, that carefree attitude, her negligence and disrespect for me. I actually admire it. But right now it's annoying. Even more so than this painter. The painter says, You better get your dog before she goes too far. What this property needs more than exterior touch ups is a fence. I can't see her, I can't hear the jingle of her tags. She is not responding to me clapping, whistling and name-calling. I get out the leash and jangle that around. With a soup can I scoop  dog food from the bag and rattle that around. It's a sound she salivates for, and not just saliva, bubbles normally form on the sides of her mouth when she hears those pellets in tin can. But right now, she's out of earshot, she's onto this trick. The one trick I need my dog to do right now she won't.
For 8 a.m., it seems dark to me. I must have been asleep when she left for work. I was up early, maybe four, and did some reading until my head hurt and I could fall back asleep. Now I'm awake. It's the ratcheting—rick-a-tick-a-tick-a-tick—the sound of ladders on the back of the house, that wakes me. The painters are here.


There is a flyer taped to the 2 hour only parking sign. It reads Found Monkey, but the k in monkey has been crossed out. And below the Sharpie drawing of a wad of bills is a brief sentence that reads: 

I found a sum of money at this location. Thank You
If this is directed at you, I'm sorry. Because if you lost the money it will be impossible for you to contact the person who found it. The finder has left no contact information.
Returning to the site where your money was lost, you'll quickly gather that the sum has been found. Because of this sign you learn that the finder was a keeper, that the finder has a sick sense of humor. And is artistic. Grateful even for the find. The finder wanted you to know that he found your money.
Or he doesn't care. It doesn't matter to the finder if you the loser return to the site or not. If you knew where you lost a wad of cash wouldn't you just return there? Shouldn't you try not to lose cash money in the first place? Unless of course alcohol was involved, which is a good assumption due to the proximity of the flyer to the bar across the street.
So maybe the flyer is a way to clear the conscious, or to artfully express a sense of gratitude.
I imagine the loser waking up in a flash. She remembers getting into the passenger side of a car (the street sign is on the right hand side of the road), and fumbling with a pocket stuffed with loose things. She races back to that scene the next morning when she realizes she didn't spend all of that money. But by then the wad is gone. And maybe the sign is up or maybe it isn't. Cash doesn't last on the street.
And then again maybe the loser didn't return at all, say, the flash never came.  
How much money and how it was spent is any person but the one who found its guess.
Suddenly, a young the young man walks past. He notices the sign and chuckles to himself. He looks down and around thinking he might find some money there, but there's no money there, neither a little nor a lot, just his beat up tennis shoes.


Congratulations on
your engage-

I don’t know who told me,
it’s not like we have
the same friends

I wish I never
found out.
I do.

You may not kiss the bride.
Part of me dies in front
of my own eyes,
as I spectate it.

You are the performer in
my mind, an image, the
character there on my
computer's screen.

I see this as
news for

I get out the letters, and
the old photographs.
The physical things
I’m left to look at
when I’m feeling
— nostalgic is
not the right

On your wedding day,
I am not there. I
wasn’t invited,

wouldn’t go
if I was.

Physically, I
am far away
and that’s

I play out the day in my head.
You, walking down the aisle
all smiles. Happy, I see
and your family,
they are so

They’ve stopped thinking about me.
My name, it doesn’t come up.
It’s not just that I’m not
there, it’s like I never
was there.

Your eyes and my
eyes make contact.
There's that
sparkle I've

It’s not for me,
though, it is
for him.

It will never
be for me


On the plane the intercom comes on and wakes me up from the dream and because I try to pay attention and listen to a woman’s voice ask if there is a doctor on board, a nurse, an EMT, anything, to please push your call button, and then, thank you. I wait. I hear a ding and then nothing. The few people I can see crank their heads up and down the aisle. The woman on my right puts down her Brad Meltzer book in her lap and the poor binding comes apart and the page that begins Chapter 32 comes out and she doesn’t notice, it won’t affect the plot. The page slips down her skirt between us. She curious about who is hurt, who’s dying on the plane she’s flying. And I'm wondering if this means we’ll have to emergency land.