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brightness followed by a moment of truth

I seldom venture out during daylight hours
the older that I get.
I’ve heard it’s called being anti social.
most certainly I’ve been called worse.
in reality, i just hate sweating for no good reason.
that’s my number one pet peeve if you ever have
a chance to ask me. sweating sucks.

but something kept harping me, telling me that
i needed to get out
so this morning i decided that I should try
breakfast during a sunrise.
And my tasty choice for this journey?
I heat up a glorious poppy seed bagel.
It might end up being food for the soul
or at the very least, serve as the bread for a bread
crumb trail if I were to somehow get lost on this trip

I stroll down to the ocean, which is amazingly,
rather close to my dwelling.
Funny how I know the times that the trains go by
my window each day, or that there’s 23 steps
on my fire escape, or that the trash man will not
come down my alley until after 6:10am,
but I never knew that the ocean was only 541
steps from my front door.
9 years and I’m still learning new things about my

once I arrived, I found a comfy seat on the seawall,
placed my nicely toasted bagel in my lap
and waited for the blessed event to happen.
pretty quickly the sky became a few shades lighter
but no sun
the clouds started to part
but no sun
the water became a tiny bit brighter
but no sun
once, when i was very young,
I read about this thing called a false dawn
I think I have just saw my first one.

I look around me to see if anyone else is watching this.
I’m actually rocking back and forth a little like an
excited child that’s finally getting a long awaited
No one was around.
I had this event all to myself this morning
Well, I had to remind myself, for normal people this
is a common event that can be seen most mornings
and maybe I should turn around before I manage
to miss it.
So, I do as I say and just as I turn towards the east
and the water and the clouds and the beginnings
of a nice sea breeze, there was this most god awful
pain to my head that I haven’t felt since a beer bottle
managed to connect with my temple about a decade
what the fuck was this?
why wasn’t i told about this?
this light, this life giving energy containing rays of
health and wellness has just smacked me dead in
my eye sockets.

“We’ve lost shields, Captain”

I can only describe the feeling as something akin
to what an unlucky bride must feel during conjugal visits
with a jailhouse hubby.
a most unholy, stabbing pain.
I almost fall off the seawall.
I finally get enough sense to throw both
of my hands up and cover my eyes and
hold my face together for a few moments
as it tries to blow apart in bits of gory
about a minute goes by before I feel it’s
safe enough to look out from behind my
I didn’t see God, or angels. Not even
a lowly cherub.
What I did see was a rather cool image
of shadowy bird claws coming at me from
off the ocean breeze.
lightning fast and filling the air around me
with a loud whooshing noise, something
that had to be the size of a pterodactyl
and just as leathery smelling was in the
process of kicking my ass.
Too bad I couldn’t make out the details better
since the sun was still continuing to jab me in
the eye sockets with a rusty ice pick, but i’m
sure my assailant was in fact, a pelican or
some such avian intent on beating me to death
with it’s wings, all the while striving to take what
little eye flesh I had left over from the sun’s
finally, after a bit of an effort, I managed to get
my arm in between Mother Goose and myself, and
promptly showed her the impoliteness of a real
downtown pimp slap.
At that same moment, a nice dark cloud had saw fit to
lend me a helping hand and swoop in between me
and the yellow disk, allowing me a brief reprieve
from the sun’s rays.
Seeing that the forces of evil were losing ground,
I made a last ditch effort to dislodge my flapping attacker
and shove it out to the hellish sea from whence it came.
I breath a sigh that’s a mixture of both relief and frustration.
relief in surviving nature’s death match
but frustrated because I missed the sunrise
or more correctly, the beauty of the sunrise.
Oh well, I still had a nice warm bagel to comfort me
but when i reached down to where I thought I left it
my hand fell upon nothing
utter and complete nothingness
That’s when it dawned on me what the albatross from hell
really wanted.
I leaned back and silently cursed the sky
as the heat from the mornings new sunlight
bathed me in it’s warmth and i feel the beginnings
of a small trickle of sweat roll down my forehead

brightness followed by a moment of truth

james cacace

Joined May 2008

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