Fresh Stream, Music

Illiterates – LP

Look both ways before crossing the abyss.


Oh, god, what a nightmare. We were
driving along, and then his head p-
opped off. Horrible sound. You hav-
e no idea. I hope not, anyway. I wo-
uldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.

So the head popped off. Mid bone c-
ruise. The window was open. Head p-
ops off and flies out of the windo-
w. I hear it saying, “What the fuc-
k?” Caught completely off guard. I-
t bonks off the windshield of a pa-
ssing car and goes off the bridge.
I saw the face of the woman in the
passenger’s seat, and, god, what t-
error. The kind of thing that gets
burned into your mind.

Initially I was shocked. How could
I not be? Heads don’t just inexpli-
cably pop off necks like that, so I
am looking around trying to figure
out how it happened. I notice the h-
ot multi-vitamins we just lifted fr-
om the mom and pop health food stor-
e down the street. They’re bouncing
up and down on the seat, sliding ar-
ound. I notice I’m being pulled by

The car is now spinning through traf-
fic. The headless body, which is spa-
zzing out in the most fucked up ways,
is doing something with the brakes a-
nd jerking the steering wheel. I try
to pry off the fingers, but they are
absolute claws and tear at my flesh.
I manage to pin the torso against t-
he door. I open it, and kick with a-
ll my might. The body rolls out int-
o the road with a thud accompanied b-
y the horns of passing cars. I hear
someone yell, “Shit!”, and the sound
of metal smashing against metal. Moa-
ns of agony. I can still see the wom-
an in the passenger seat’s face in m-
y mind’s eye. Everything is a blur.

I get into the driver’s seat. It’s r-
aining, and, in the midst of all of t-
his, the window has fogged up. I can’t
see anything except orbs of light fl-
ashing around me. I realize I’m prob-
ably too fucked up to be dealing wit-
h a situation like this. I should pu-
ll over and assess things. But, soone-
r or later mom and pop are going to re-
alize someone cleaned out their supp-
lement section and they’re going to
know who did it. The fucking weirdo-
es crouched in the corner for an hour
whispering to each other. I can fee-
l the fuzz already. I need to get h-
ome. Or at least get away.

I wipe the window and take a minute t-
o remember where I am, and where I’m
going. It comes back to me, but I st-
art getting distracted about the hea-
d, and realizing everything is cover-
ed in blood. It’s a fucking nightmar-
e. I’m missing a piece of my finger.
I have no idea how that happened and
I can’t even feel it. When I notice I
go into shock. My nose really hurts.
I can’t tell if my vision is blurry o-
r if it’s just the rain/fog and the w-
indow. The lights don’t help. I read
a sign. I can get off the damned hig-
hway in a mile and assess things.

The exit ramp. I nearly hit the guar-
d rail several times, there is somet-
hing wrong with the steering, and th-
e tires are squealing. They’re bald
and every single one has a screw or
a nail in it from driving in Worces-
ter. The sick fucks at the towing c-
ompany there secretly drop 5 galloo-
n tubs of screws into the streets a-
s a promotional gimmick. They work
with the DPW to keep the potholes a-
s fucked up and deep as possible. B-
ut, I try to get all this shit out
of my head and breathe. It looks l-
ike I’m in a forest.

I have no idea how the head popped o-
ff. It really is inexplicable. The w-
hole idea of this caper was to go to
the store, get the vitamins, and the-
n go home. I didn’t know the guy’s n-
ame. He came to the house to buy a m-
icrophone from a friend, and we got t-
o talking about healthfood supplement-
s. Joking about huperzine-a and rich
yacht club people scared of dying or
going senile. Decided to try some bu-
t the prices are outrageous. The guy
was prepared to drop a small fortune
on a TLM-103, though. My friend said
if we could get a lifetime’s supply
of 5-HTP and St. John’s Wort and No
Doz he would sell the mike for $200.
I needed theanine and magnesium any-
way, but I’ll never turn down a qua-
lity multivitamin. We got in the ca-

I remember the contraband kombucha a-
nd cod liver oil in the back. I reme-
mber the guy mentioned something abo-
ut lithium too. I dig into the backs-
eat. I take a few of the cod liver a-
nd one of the lithiums. Take a swig
of the kombucha, and one of the rit-
zy waters the guy took. Lava Falls o-
r something. “Nothing but the best.”
I’m definitely in the forest. The s-
un just set, so the sky is all oran-
ge and weird looking. It’s relaxing.
I start thinking about what just ha-
ppened. I look at my hand. “Oh, god.”
What am I going to do about this? T-
he top of my pinky finger is gone. T-
heere is a little bone poking out of
the meat. I vomit. All I can taste i=
s fish.

I have to ditch the car. It isn’t ev-
en mine. The rain. I look in the bac-
k seat. An umbrella. I see a little
conservation land parking lot on the
side of the road and pull in. I used
to smoke bowls here with my friends
a long time ago. I know exactly whe-
re I am. I can be home in about fiv-
e minutes. I think for a minute. I g-
et nervous. The car is covered in bl-
ood, vomit, flesh, hair, and about a
hundred multivitamins that spilled o-
ut of a defective bottle. It’s a leg-
itimate crime scene and it has my fi-
nger prints all over it. The lake. I
get back into the car and turn it on.

I’m back on the road and driving wit-
h the lights off. I went down a back
road by the lot, down a fucked up ro-
cky hill, tearing up the undercarri-
age of the car (evidence), and towa-
rd the municipal beach. It’s actual-
ly the perfect crime. Almost. A lot
of witnesses when the head popped o-
ff. The car drove itself pretty wel-
l for a while there. Even after the
body fell out. Like, really well. D-
rectionals and everything. I sigh. T-
his is better than nothing. I pop it
into neutral and aim it for the wate-
r. With any luck they’ll find the bo-
dy floating in a day or two and tie
it to the car down here. I can see t-
he bridge. Not such a stretch.

I grab the bag of vitamins and push
the car. It rolls into the water an-
d floats for a minute, then submerg-
es. I enter the woods. I can see th-
e lights from the houses in the dis-
tance. I stop occasionally to liste-
n for the sound of branches breakin-
g. I haven’t see anyone since getti-
ng off the exit ramp. That’s weird,
I think, but I keep walking. I just
need to get over that hill and I’m
home. I climb and I see my house. I
climb down a little shelf of rocks
and land on my street. I run across
and at that moment I am struck. The
bag of vitamins explodes in a bizar-
re multicolored cloud of pills and
silica bags. It’s the last things I

Someone gets out of the car. Yellin-
g, “Now why did you do that, you as-
shole?” Someone else gets out of th-
e car. They are repeating “Oh my go-
d” a lot. They ask if I’m dead. The
first person laughs, “That’d be jus-
t my fucking luck. I kill some dumb
asshole on a Tuesday.” The other pe-
rson says something about calling t-
he police. “No. Get in the car.” I
hear doors slam shut and rubber pee-
ling off. Then silence. I feel incr-
edibly fucked up. I feel blood pump-
ing out of my body. My head is kill-
ing me. It’s hard to breathe.

I’m going to die. I know that. It’s
fine. The thing that bothers me, th-
ough, is the fact the guy’s head ju-
st popped off. I’ll never know why.
I guess I have to just accept it’s
something the pigs are going to ha-
ve to figure out for themselves. I
am basically dead, but I can’t sto-
p burping. All I can taste is fish
and blood.

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