Dead Violets in Ear Boxed Ears by Joshua Martin

ye old paint shop and marble desks of a widowed cloth wedding dresses like a coffin full of victor mature and monica moonpie with dead violets in her boxed ears spending a month’s pay on odetta records and reading bound for glory with the pages uncut / oh, the waves are in some kind of trouble, all those bastard raccoons with bananas between their claws and attaché cases on their minds / okay, so monica moonpie was at a dress shop fitting with a werewolf, peggy sue, and martin luther and as the lady with the clay hands measures monica moonpie’s waist, she’s got a grin on her face and her bloody crucifix around her neck smells like cherries and monica moonpie glances down at the lady with the clay hands and says “have you done this before?” “not since i was knee eye to a railroad track” “oh i see it all very clearly now and i want you to take those clay hands off of me before i spit all over you” and the lady with the clay hands stands up and wants to slap monica moonpie’s face, but she has her mind on tyrone power and the lone ranger so instead she looks monica moonpie right in the eye and says “you’re just a vampire and i think you’re better off without a smile!” and monica moonpie gets real mad and she gets these spikes growing out of her back and her lips turn bright red and the lady with the clay hands sees all this and laughs and says “if i didn’t know better, i’d say that you were nothing but a freak” and monica moonpie spits fire and says “you ain’t no anouk aimee and i bet you make a lousy cup of coffee and i bet you can’t carry a tune and i’d rather eat a jar of mayonnaise than smell you!”

next to the aquarium and somewhere near the smoky mountains an alligator football team practices macbeth behind the bleachers and there’s this square headed blonde sitting at the top of the bleachers and she’s humming softly to herself and wondering how much time has passed since she last apologized to her favorite ice cream attendant and had an evening prayer for the soul of brigid brophy / it’s been even more or many or whatever yrs since she walking down the train tracks with monica moonpie and in those days monica moonpie used to help elderly women cross the street and she used to speak cajun and recite woody guthrie lyrics at the top of her lungs…now, this blonde in the bleachers, she’s all thumbs when it comes to tying knots and it used to make monica moonpie die from laughter when they were sailors and the blonde had to tie some knot and she just couldn’t do it and monica moonpie would laugh at her very loudly in front of everyone and this really got to the blonde after a while and one night she drew a mustache on monica moonpie’s face and on her forehead wrote: I’D RATHER BE STUMBLING THRU THE ROCKIES WITH STOLYPIN!!!…they never saw each other again after that and after the blonde had a mutant daughter and had eaten the last apple pie there was, she thought, and it was the first real though she ever had, and the thought was of a book by ann quin she had read and suddenly she got to dreaming and got to flying all night and she learned hungarian and got sick of god and jesus and all that and then she found these bleachers and started sitting there every day /

then again, monica moonpie was living alone in philadelphia with a room full of newspaper ads and pictures of alain delon, gregory corso, and the shah of iran on the wall, ceiling, and floor…between the curtains lay a cat with a tumor as big as a basketball on its back and monica moonpie got beaten up real bad by an indie rocker in thrift store t-shirts because she had said that sonic youth wasn’t worth shit and, anyway, monica moonpie has been dressing like it was the 1950’s, in poddle skirts and stockings and all that and when the downtown hipsters – those hipsters that seem to be everywhere where there’s water and hamsters and drawings of james dean on the sidewalks – saw her, they just laughed and said she was outdated and when she mentioned that she was as outdated as nick ray films and rambling jack eliot songs and virginia woolf novels, they shrugged their hipster shoulders and so monica moonpie put an ad in the newspaper that read: IF I EVER CARE WHAT YOU THINK, I’LL GO BACK TO SCHOOL, GET A JOB, GET MARRIED AND GO TO CHURCH EVERY SUNDAY LIKE A GOOD LITTLE GIRL AND ANOTHER THING, I’M NOT THE ONE WHO RATTED ON DILLINGER, SO QUITE BLAMING IT ON ME; I WAS JUST IN THE WRONG PLACE AT THE WRONG TIME AND IF I’M A BAD PERSON, THEN SO IS SYLVIA SIDNEY AND RUBY KEELER AND JUDY GARLAND AND JANE POWELL AND I THINK YOU ALL AGREE THAT THEY ARE NO SO BAD; ANYWAY, I DON’T WANT YOU TO READ THIS UNLESS YOU’VE FIRST READ KAFKA’S THE CASTLE AND RIMBAUD’S A SEASON IN HELL AND JUST ONE LAST THING: I MAKE LOUSY SANDWICHES AND I DON’T DRINK AND SO FUCK OFF and she signed it THE HYSTERICAL BRIDE IN THE PENNY ARCADE.

Joshua Martin is a Philadelphia based writer and filmmaker dedicated to absurdity and radicalization.  His films can be found at