Ozzy Mandias


wanderer-above-the-mist-casper-david-friedrichThe pregnant feminist reminisced on the hegemony of gesture, rubbing her hand on her belly, big and round as a full moon. She rinsed her dry mouth with cool water and put her head under the faucet. My hair streams down my neck like snakes, like little rivers running as the snows melt in an early spring, she thinks and she pulls her head away from the sink and shakes it like a dog, water spraying around the kitchen. She thinks also I am not ready in spite of the evidence of her eyes, her belly and her ankles that she is beyond ready.

Truth be told, there are no accidental pregnancies among radical lesbian separatists, which is what Mardi Gras is, here with her big belly, pending baby and theories full and pressing against her, bladder and brain both distended past all previous reckoning. Mardi Gras is the child of sanctimony, matzo on one side, communion wafer on the other, and a little trickle of southern baptist that comes out once in awhile to sing big old hymns when noone is listening.

We here all know about the conversos of New Mexico, what, 16th 17th century Jews running to the new world from that old world wringing their hands in sacred mud for lost children, and then centuries later worshipping in that same wet Chimayo dirt with prayers and candles lit on a menorah but who knows quien sabe really, is what the grandmother said to the pregnant feminist.

The feminist and the rabbi walked into a bar – this is an actual joke that Mardi Gras heard from her own sister, who then inhaled a pretzel and asphyxiated like some nasty republican, like some old pop star, like some damn fool who can’t walk and chew gum at the same time.

Truthfully, when your ancestors came over from Spain and Morocco and Italy during the inquisition and they’ve all been steeped in the mythology of survival, then survive is what they do, what they do is survive past all expectation.

Mardi’s mother tells the story of the archbishop who played grabass with every choir boy in Española for twenty years and eventually got promoted up and out far enough where whispers could not touch, like dust in a sealed tomb, like the settling of old debts, and was silenced at last.

What worry could they have at the growing of Mardi’s belly, so intentional, so abolute in faith and love? All children should be wanted. All of Mardi’s are, starting with this one, the first. Ozzy Mandias, king of kings, son of women, singer of songs from every corner of this little earth.

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