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THE ACHING GENTLEMAN
BY PAUL CUNNINGHAM

Ache was whispering and her bad posture was offending a man disguised as a gentleman. The Gentleman was drinking fine wine and The Gentleman was rubbing himself hard.

Ache lets words crawl away:

Do you want me toó

No.

Iím just trying to make you happy.

I donít need a slut to be happy.


After dinner, in the middle of the night, Ache burrows deep into the chest of The Gentleman like a skeleton hunting for replacement bones.

The Gentleman feels a tiny sun fall out of his chest-grave. His skin feels loose around his hands and his knees feel like hollow eggs. The Gentleman feels like a dormant volcano. No blood preparing to spray from his vessel. No boiling redness absorbing his human color. His chest-grave is empty and the sun rolls down a street and into a moving city.

Ache is aching. Chafing against the metallic buildings of the moving city. Each window-lined segment of each building is like a glass sore.

The Gentleman walks into a building and stands beneath a segment of sunlight. He pounds against a breast-shaped window.

Ache lingers in each pane of glass and a wide sheath of tissue hugs The Gentleman tightly. The pressure is simply too much. Smooth muscles push him through the glass and he falls onto a traffic-road. Crushed, he writhes around the glass along the asphalt. A gnawed and damagedó

Ache is settled.