They climbed for hours because there were no roads, choking on dust and hauling bags loaded with equipment. Klieg lights, tarps, helmets, a strange inflatable vehicle. When they reached the top, the commanding officer put the Rolleiflex on the tripod and said, One picture before we clear the set. The lieutenant and private grinned next to the sign and the camera clicked.
Now will you tell me why you brought me up here? asked the private. His lieutenant laughed. We’re going to do something out of this world, you and me, and we need to do it right away because the Reds— it’s a matter of national morale.
They began to argue. Yelling turned into shoving and soon both men were bloodied, panting and crumpled in the cool mountain dirt. They fell next to the bag with the shovel, pick-axe, and American flag. Only one man made it down.
Nobody could smoke a cigarette like Linda Darnell.
Snapshots from my classroom.
Stories from the white spaces on the map.
A dub field of mid-century blues.
Love among the ruins.
Lonely gas stations and motel neon.
Her best friend was a little battery-powered radio.
He felt close to her while he drove, his insides vibrating like a teenage dream.
Somewhere Roy Orbison plays on a battered old radio.