if it were 1950, gary good would be 2, maybe 1. my father would be in new york, and it would be before the conscription. gary used to be part of the translation, and he was the one to call if there was a flicker before the bulb burned out. he was the one to call if your head was speaking through a larva of asbestoses, writhing like pudgy babies in a calendar shoot, babies who were exploited before they turned genuinely fat, babies that could twist and lodge in your throat, like tuberculosis, babies that could taste like HIV if they plunked out right into your veins. gary good was in vietnam, came back a negro despite his efforts. he had sex with loose women, even used heroin irresponsibly, but only to compensate for the hole come back in his foot. what could they really give him to compensate? a clean race? blood on the door? gary good went crazy, maybe he's dead, it doesn’t matter anyway. he lived in fairlawn by the drive-in hamburgery and was the recipient of brutal accidents, but goddamn, he was a good kid.