Inspired by Death in the Afternoon

and other short writings

by Jess Mize

Inspired by Death in the Afternoon

I thought it was all a scheme. I thought it silly and pitiful at the same time while also being distant from abstract emotions and musing on the many concerns of men and women. I thought about death in the afternoon and how once, over half a century ago I was gored in the groin performing a sarcastic veronica and confident with the knowledge of money to come and the scent of arrogant Spanish wine by the pool in San Sebastian. The water will be nice and cool since it is fall and many mornings I will swim and relax and read many of my new friends’ books before next season and then my retirement and peaceful country death somewhere in the mountains near the border I thought as the left flank of the unchiseled horn, the scythe of Pan into my manhood piercing through a slight above my asshole and it didn’t take me long to bleed to death. The prince signaled for both ears and all hoofs to be burnt along with me upon a pyre in an ancient Pagan villa by the sea.


It’s Alarming. . .

white rose

Her lyrical manner left me charmless, a white rose in the wind and now lifeless floating upon the moving waters. I listened with gaiety inwardly cursing my naive language. Dawn awakened hiding the stars and the young girl sat smoking a cigarette thinking about life and that it must be a dream. Shadows are phantoms with iridescent eyes focused far from city lights and intolerable drunkenness. The mind is a museum mirror aphrodisiac.


A Night Like This

night comes on like a cloaked poet,

strangely austere.

the moon rustles in its silver bag

bestowing ethereal light upon

groves, back roads,

and graveyards;

where young hearts

explore old pleasures anew.

like a map that is redrawn and reshaped

with each succeeding generation,

cartographs of pleasures and purgatories,

these Baedekers catalogue every trifle

using binary code.

but under this sky and these stars,

iridescent white on midnight blue,

Rhianna’s Swarovski crystals,

in this season of our youth and

of our put off despair,

ecstatic peace can spare

us an interlude.


(Terre Noir )

Consider yourselves fortuitous that you are not compensated

For your indiscretions with exile from les paradis.

Decrepit among the pollutants, decrepit and nefarious

Your aesthetic cities proclaim their progress.

But wait, too benevolent, the offended lumière

Not only is merciful, but with enchanted gems

And hyacinths from the ruins of Paphos repays your scorn.

Glistening transfigured in the Southern heat,

In place of gilded domes rise the turrets of a Gothic castle

Once inhabited by the noble Werner.

Hellenic temples, not smog-strung labour factories, shine.

And like the still spiritual dreams of Doctor Rappaccini,

Hangs the crooked smoke of incense, through which the eyes

of the gods


Gigantic gestures of the human’s lecherous lusts,

The astral phantasies, the busts of atavistic esthétique.


Pabst Blue Ribbon on Ice

It is nice to know someone is happy. I could cry all night if the gods would let me. But it takes a lot of energy to sustain what may be termed a violent emotion. The real and the imaginary. Memories like recent events. Certain roads and deserted landscapes. A setting that stretches for miles. You cannot be this miserable forever. At some time, in the future, you will die with your collective thoughts, emotions, and imaginations. Neither they nor you will prolong existence. It is a circle badly drawn. To wit, the repetition is superficially concealed. Recriminations of what you do not have. What if one’s body and one’s mind and the actions they create are the projection of one’s soul? If only science had not far surpassed my sloth.



Jess Mize is a blonde-haired surfer girl from South Carolina– and also one of our favorite writers.

We’ve run a profile of Jess.

Her previous writing for us was the story “Valentine’s Day.”




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