Monday, November 25, 2013

Talking Turkeys: Thanksgiving Day Excerpt

STRAY turns three years old this week and will be .99 cents until Saturday. Check out the latest cover.

.99¢ KINDLE Version

That strung out heroin addict on the cover is from a series of photos by Actor/Director/Producer David Beatty who graciously allowed me to use the image. To me, that makes him Good People, and I will give him a fist bump in heaven if I can get there. Surely his spot is secured. 

 The Golden Retriever sandwiched between used to have sole possession of the cover, and now he's back.  The blurb on the front is from Sacha Scoblic, author of the fabulous "Unwasted: My Lush Sobriety."

Here's a short Thanksgiving day themed excerpt from STRAY. James is a main character of STRAY who was raised on a turkey farm. He has an epiphany hanging out with the turkeys after taking his first hit of acid. Enjoy! 

James remembered sitting against the wired fence, with a bottle of Busch beer between his legs, and waiting for the LSD to take effect.  Turkeys shuffled in front of him, their herky-jerky heads bobbing this way and that, and they gobbled with every breath.  James sat relaxed, like watching waves fold upon the beach, and the turkeys weaved a wonderful dance as he drank his six-pack.

The sun was warm and glowing, and his senses started to drip like the sweat on his forehead.  The cells of his body seemed to be expanding, encompassing more and more, and James let it happen.  He felt his body oozing, the grass breathing, and the earth moving up and down to match the air in his lungs.  Sounds were deeper, richer, and were felt in his chest like loud bass from far away.

The sounds he felt in his chest were the gobbles.

The random gobbles from the turkeys, the backdrop of life for James his whole life, were now screams.  Cries.  Gobbles were cries, getting more and more intense, and speaking to James directly.  The turkeys were telling James they were finally glad he could hear them, finally glad he could hear their screams of fear, of being trapped.  We’ve always been here, marching off to our slow death, watching our family being hit with stun guns and propped up by their feet, and then sliding towards decapitation.  You can hear us now James, you’re realizing we smell the blood of our brothers in the air, see the blood squirt out of their necks.  We’re always scared and screaming, screaming in the gobbles, gobbles, gobbles, gobbles, but nobody hearing us, just watching us being slaughtered.  But now you know, James, today you can finally hear us.

They know they’re going to die, thought James, feeling his veins throb in his temple.  James had never been sure if they knew they were going to die or not, but now they were telling him.  The animals on the farm knew they were here to be slaughtered for someone else, and were living in terror everyday.

But then James began to envy the turkeys and his pulse began slowing.  The screams ringing in his ear became comforting.  The turkeys had a definite purpose, they knew their role, and they lived not in fear but acceptance.  They accepted they were supposed to be killed slowly, accepted they were supposed to live in terror.  It was all part of an absurd game for them to try to escape through cracks in the fence, to eat to get fat, and to wander aimlessly to get nowhere.  It was just why they were here, so let it happen.  And just as James found his mind comforted with this thought, they gobbled back in confirmation.  Yes, James, you’re finally getting it, yes, James, you’re getting it.  Gobbling in fear was just part of it.  Now you got it James, now you know. 

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