So I’m in the Bucktown apartment of Chicago recluse author Clive Javanski. He wanted me to take care of a few things, like his fish and a cat that’s somewhere…while he’s in Kalamazoo, Michigan for what I believe is a book reading or appearance of some sort. I have a feeling right now he’s on a stool at Bell’s Brewery, drinking a double cream stout and talking up a couple University of Michigan students. Probably about the smell of books, what bands they’re into, pants, and arm jewelry.

Manuscripts and various writings lay about. I read a few. Stuff he either hasn’t tried to publish or is simply unfinished, or rejected pieces. One caught my eye, lying next to the latest Leonard Cohen record. It’s brief and seems to have been written during or shortly after a book reading tour or something last winter in the nether regions of Wisconsin. I’m going to post it. It’s entitled Jesus The Ladybug.

Jesus the Ladybug

So it was the final night of my winter weekend stay at the Wolf Paw resort in Wisconsin. I had gotten lost in the woods earlier that afternoon so once I found my way out and got back to my cabin, I drank some wine.  Exhausted, I crashed out. That’s when the ladybug in my room spoke to me. The same ladybug I noticed fluttering around the cabin when I first checked in. It had to be zero below outside, but this little bastard was hanging on.

The Ladybug was sitting (or standing, how can you tell?) on the desk next to the bed.

“I’m Jesus,” he said.

I didn’t  have that much wine, I thought.

“What?”

“I’m Jesus. Do you think it’s odd my name is Jesus?”

“No I think it’s odd a Ladybug is talking. Later on, I might feel that Jesus is an odd name for you.”

Jesus inched closer.

“I’m hanging here until spring. You’re the first guest in the room since October. The previous guest was a lesbian. She was cute. Smelled good.”

I asked Jesus if he spoke to her, and he said no, he did not. I told him about my weekend, how I got lost in the woods, for which he called me an asshole. Jesus the Ladybug had an attitude, but he wanted to talk to me.

He asked him about the mouse. Last night I woke to the sound of pitter-patter behind the walls and above the ceiling. I figured it was a mouse, also seeking a winter refuge.

“Yea, that’s John,” Jesus told me. “He came from the Wood Shed. He’ll go back in the summer.”

The Wood Shed was a bar about a mile from my cabin. I ate there earlier this evening. I told Jesus about the jamokes in there, including a bare foot fellow wearing of those “I’m with stupid” shirts.

“He had the audacity to wear that?” Jesus said. “When John gets back there and sees that asswrench, he’ll piss in his burger.”

I told Jesus I had to get some sleep and that it was nice talking to him. I asked him what he planned to do the rest of the night while I snoozed.

“I don’t know,” he said. “Maybe I’ll shit in your ear.”

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