[By the] Spool

Functional elastic waistband replacement
has taken the sweatpant market by storm,
just as those most forward-thinking
tastemakers and trendsetters predicted
as far back as a full generation ago.

Here’s the long and short of it:
You’re the kind of person who very much enjoys
the comfort and functionality of a sweatpant,
to the point where your favorite pair (they
don’t make ’em quite like that anymore)
requires a new waistband after only
moderate garmential utilization.

Rather than fretting and tossing
those pants you know and love
(within whose bounds you formed
the most lasting memories of your entire lifetime),
you simply dip into your junk drawer
for a length of replacement elastic
and doctor up those trousers all on your own!

Replacement elastics are sold by the foot
(or in fractions of feet, for the real weirdos out there),
with a competitive price drop if you order it
by the spool.

Fully engrossed in the 21st Century, we believe
it’s our duty to turn that dream
of on-demand, taut-yet-comfortable waistbands
into a reality that we modern world citizens
take for granted, like the internet
or patent leather galoshes.

Disclaimer: due to the sheer number
of semi-literate individuals asking if we
provide discounts for people ordering their elastics
“by the pool”, we have discontinued
poolside delivery of our fine product line.

CII

The dream of a lifetime
stood up for days
as the saving grace
of my eternal consciousness,
even though I couldn’t
for the life of me figure out
exactly what happened
or why a chicken
with an alarm clock head
hopped straight into an electrified fence
and became a bucket of extra crispy
from a place called Kalamata Dried Chickbeaks–
a subsidiary of Ten Pin Alley Industries.

C

I flew the coop; took on a couple extra feathers under the brim of my cap and another in the loop of my shoelace, passengers on a journey across the Midwest. My foot feather dropped off at the world’s largest ball of twine, satisfied to become a tourist’s quarry. The other two held on for dear life as the Great Plains beckoned me to continue my arbitrary geographical survey. Not until I reached the Rockies did they think about dislodging. As I rose ever higher to avoid the jagged peaks, I noticed a hesitation. Just when I thought they didn’t have the guts, both feathers dropped into the domain of a billy goat clan and I waved goodbye. Still soaring, I questioned my motives for the flight: why did I even agree to go this far, and shouldn’t I just turn around? Days of nonstop flight can wear on you, even in a dream. I cut my losses and headed back, amazed that I hadn’t lost my lucky cap.

Stream 2

Talk about hard knocks. This marble countertop really banged up my knuckles.
Who told me that marble and marbles are the same material? Was it Edgar?
Edgar is nothing but trouble. I don’t know what possessed you to take him to that ball game.
I mean, I understand he just lost his dog, but baseball is a strange substitute.
You could have taken a date to that game, you know. You never think of those things, do you?
It’s not all just going to magically ‘work out’ for you. You have to make those efforts.

Stream 1

A potential for anything is really what I’d like to see around here.
Anything less just seems halfhearted.
Take a leap and risk a plunge, there’s nothing wrong with it.
Well, utter failure and death are dubious rewards.

A bank teller, a swamp monster and a demon from the sixth level of hell walk into a bar.

The manhole cover by the playground has been slightly ajar for six or seven weeks now.
Kevin went over that way yesterday after school, and I haven’t seen him since.