Stalking Prettiness at the World’s End

That newsguy with the slim, freshly plucked eyebrows warns me about what’s to come in the next eighty-three minutes: bloody rain, black sores, somebody else’s sun crashing into our earth like, quote, “a flaming, poisonous medieval torture wheel.”

“How-dee-do, apocalypse!” I yell out the window. “You seem sexy to me! What nice jagged eyeteeth and noxious chemicals you have! We just met and already I would recommend you over everyone I have met on internet dating sites. Probably you should meet my sister.”

I gaze at the sky, waiting for the moon to bleed out, but there isn’t a single burst vessel. I start boring myself with story ideas again.

“Okay, I am ready to go!” I say to my seamstress eighty-two minutes later. “Do it like you’ve never done it before!”

I don her busted vision, a gown/parachute/flotation device made of sunset-colored polyester, and hop a plane that drops me way out in the dead of an unknown cornfield.

What I see going down: breasty billboards, cruise ships slathered in oil, my mother reading a romance novel online, millions of football games and their cheerleaders, more abandoned pets than you could ever imagine and tiny dying people working inside gigantic skyscrapers or eating alone in fast food restaurants or slaving away over pieces of art nobody will ever see or jacking off on each other’s faces.

My gown ruffles outward into forever, clobbering the sky, cloaking the earth’s surface caution-orange. Mine was not the last living seamstress. Mine wasn’t the last gown in the middle of the last sky, the last cornfield.

My yard’s molds keep on trying to rub out the lawn furniture. But this generation’s lawn chairs will never become fossils. They will just always still be here, forever and forever and forever like dinosaurs and honeybees and us.

Megan Martin is the author of Nevers (Caketrain, 2014). She teaches writing and literature at
the Art Academy of Cincinnati.

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