A Magical Night at the Fishing Pier and the Terror Child at the Restaurant, as it was underneath the strange green lights that illuminated the water, shining into that water that was underneath the pier, showing those voracious fish that were chasing those smaller fish in that game of survival, and as a porpoise swam around them like an elegant mermaid in that water, as I watched his ethereal form move and come in front of me, and it all seemed like a dream out there on that fishing pier out there in the Gulf in the Warm Wind, and you were with your Dad, that Father that had just got diagnosed with cancer, and he seemed like he never wanted to return and he never wanted to leave from out at that pier, like the old man and the sea out there at that pier, fighting with those voracious fish out there hitting the water, as you fished into the long night that seemed like an eternity that night underneath those strange translucent lights that gleamed into the water, but that was after, that was after all the fun with that little boy that was grown up to be a terror of the high seas himself, and my brother throwing him over his shoulder as he screamed bloody murder in one of those docked side sea food restaurants, those ubiquitous places that are all over the beach road down along the Gulf, one of those crab shacks, where they don't give you spoons or forks and you just bust into one of those crabs and kick back with a beer, with the other tourists families trying to escape their lives on the mainland, as that little boy wanted his present from me, and that's what started all the trouble, because before when he was like one years old I would give him a gift and it seemed fun and a nice thing to do, but now the boy expects his gift and demands it when he wants it, and when I made a little joke thinking it wasn't that big of deal, and told him I didn't have any present for him this time he just lost it, and looking like he was about to cry as he just put his head down on the table, like a dejected three year old, like his damn world had come crashing down to earth, and some might say like myself that the little man is a bit spoiled now, but I still like giving him little things, and maybe I started the problem anyway, as he had to go outside and he had to cool down before he could come back inside and climb on the walls near the photos of all the celebrities like 80s rockers that had come down to this sleepy little Gulf Town on the coast, to get away from life, to get away from life's problems, just like we were doing, accept not really saying anything about it, just trying to act like it was normal and nothing was wrong, and not trying to face up to the facts, but to escape them in this Crab Shack on Beach Boulevard, as the little terror went over to another table with some younger couples who were looking to have kids themselves, as my brothers wife was talking to them and was talking to them abut babies, and letting them hold my brothers second child, as the little terror man went and sat with them, still dejected from not getting his present, as my brother looked at him ready to pounce again at the slightest provocation, as the couple at the next table tried to cheer him up but it wasn't doing any good, and I went outside and decided to give him his little gift right then and there afraid of another meltdown from the boy, as I went out there looking at the ships and the sails, and feeling the wind and gravel that was oyster shells in this sleepy Gulf Town, and setting off the car alarm but nobody really cared, as I got the boy his Pokemon cards, the only real thing he cares about in the world, not playing soccer with my Brother as his coach as he refuses to play and go in the game, maybe hes too young to play, maybe he doesn't have much interest as they bribe him with those Pokemon superheroes that he mimics from the sidelines of that Soccer Game that he shows no interest in, but that boy is living in another time like a social experiment he is with his IPAD stuck in his face at all times, but my brother has banned his use to try to get him off the machine, and thats another reason that the night at the Crab Shack on Beach Boulevard has gone so wrong that I had to run to get his Pokemon Cards and set off the car alarm to appease that terror of the high seas, was because that boy didnt have his IPAD to look at all the commercials for toys that he wants for Christmas over and over again like it's just set on mass consumation repeat as he stares in wonder at those things he doesn't have, because another night after this one where we went to another tourist sea food shack at a marina he had that IPAD looking at those toy commercials and we didn't hear a peep out of the boy, it was like he wasn't even there at all, but that boy needed his Pokemon cards now, that spoiled little IPAD boy, but he thinks I'm like his Uncle Santa Claus and you can't let the boy down now can you, as I handed him his cards and he busted them open at the table and him and my Brother scoured over them, because my brother likes them almost as much as the terror boy does, remembering vacation trips with that blond boy in the back with a toothless grin on a gameboy in the 90's playing his little pokemon game and a terror his own self, and feeling older, and out of touch in this small gulf Town with that boy and your brother sorting out those Pokemon Cards on the table, and your Dad diagnosed with Cancer coming down here as his last resort almost to do what he wants to do, almost like its his birthday, but its not his birthday, its before he starts his radiation and chemotherapy, but such is the way life roles out, as we leave that Crab Shack on Beach Boulevard and go looking at some Bait Shops, looking at crabs eating fish heads, shrimps swimming around in the tubs, with old hands with tattoes on their backs and with leathery skin cleaning up the floors and spraying them down, as we get the bucket of fish to be used as bait, as they die in the back of the car where my Father looks too tired and worn and not really wanting to go anywhere, but he has to do this it seems, the old man has to conquer the sea, and never go home till he's had his fill, as we go out there like conquering warriors on the hunt, in the night, as my Father looking like a tourist weekeneder, with his floppy hat and khaki shorts, with his cart that he pulls behind him that makes all kinds of racket, as we pay the man at the front of the pier in his empty office, that doesn't have a stitch of furniture, a lonely life of the pier man, not paying much, in his empty shack staying up late to take peoples money so they can fish the pier, in the night, as he watches his little TV in the empty office, with pictures of peoples fish they caught, the big ones on the wall, but that is it in that empty shack, as he doesn't lift his head from his TV as me and the Father start heading down the Pier making all kinds of racket as we head down it, and everybody we pass we say hello, we say hello to all these characters on the Pier out here, and you see the people strolling, the couples that are together, and the drunken young people cracking jokes to themselves as they go past you in this different kind of life out at the pier in the night, and the older people just watching for dolphins and just enjoying a strolll along the pier, and then there are the fishermen, the ones that have already staked out there spots along each individual lights like territorial hunters guarding their prey, but each character you pass you give a little greeting too, and they are a motely sort these strange Pier fishermen, silent faced Hispanic fishermen with their wives greeting you with a nod of their head, as they listen to their music on a radio they brought along, chunking out big pieces of cut up fish they handle with a butcher knife on top of a cooler, a couple of drunken buddies laughing as they toss in their line and look back to us as my Father calls, out, “You had any luck yet?” and they tell us nothing yet, just some small sandies, talking in the fishermen lingo about those voracious fish underneath us, chasing out the smaller fish, as that dolphin circles underneath us, underneath those strange green lights, as he makes his port hole sounds as he comes up for air, and we see an older couple call out as they stroll, “There he is Barbara. Did you see him. He was right next to us.” as the elusive porpoise disappears again, and there are familes out there staked out underneath the lights and the kids with their small fishing poles, and the father trying to tell him how to do it, just like we tried to teach that little Terror boy how to fish the day before, and how he held the Fishing Pole that my father gave him, and he had a bite, and he caught a little fish, and he held it like that little Dr. Doolittle Boy he is, because if he is one thing, he isn't afraid of anything that slithers or slides around on scales, or any creepy crawling things that's for sure, as the little fish was flopping around, and we kept him in a bucket, so the little boy could throw him in the sand and look at him before he finally flopped back into that vicous surival sea from which he came, but now it was just the darkness of the fishing pier under those strange green lights that attracts those voracious fish, as we staked out your piece of territory on that pier to see what we could do and what we could catch, and to see what the hunters would bring home, to survive or to die, and to nevver come back from that fishing Pier, to be out there for eternity, to live that night over and over again, as those little dead bait fish in our bucket were struggling for survival because this is the world that we live in, this was the pier world that we were born into, this incubator of life and death under those strange green lights, as we started catching some of those small voracious little fish, and my Father was just in Heaven out there, but just for that one night, as those strollers would pass us, and you could hear them still looking for that dolphin as he came up for air around us, and those young girls giggling, as they were talking about some boy, and those drunken buddies, going from spot to spot, and having a time, and those Hispanic familes still listening to their music, and we still hunted on our little piece of territory on that fishing pier, and we were still there, as the people slowly drifted away, slowly dragging their things away, and slowly the strollers weren't there anymore, and there were just a few diehards out there on that fishing pier still looking for something but they didn't know what it was they were really looking for, maybe just acting out age old questions out there, in the darkness with the sea, and that dolphin underenath those man made lights, with just the Father and myself, and it was like he didn't want to come home that night, as we stayed out there till there was only the silence of the wind and the silence of the sea as the tide began to come in, and the wind blew against your face, and your body started to tire, but you couldn't even tell what time it was out there, in the darkness, in the ocean wildenerss in this small sleepy gulf town, that doens't seem to exist anymore, only in my dreams, and there is only the old man and the sea out there on that silent fishing Pier, fighting for survival like those little vicious fish underneath those man made lights, and that dolphin like some kind of mermaid from another planet, underneath that pier circling, telling us something, but I don't know what it is, some kind of question, that we don't really hear anymore, the calling for the sea, the calling for eternity, and the old man and the sea that never wants to leave, and maybe he'll be out there forever, but only in my dreams.
beyond the grave like lazarus
- A Magical Night at the Fishing Pier and the Terror Child