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A. Frank Bower

Today is Sunday. Ten minutes ago, I poured a cup of leftover coffee and put it into the microwave oven, but the damn thing wouldn’t run. I hate cold coffee. I put the mug on my ceramic stovetop; it wouldn’t turn on, either. I assumed there’s a power outage and sipped it cold. I looked out the window over the sink to check the neighborhood for lights, didn’t see any and observed it’s a gray day. When I opened the front door to get the newspaper, I noticed there were no clouds. The sky was gray. It was eight a.m. I thought, Shouldn’t sunlight be brightening the world? There was no paper, so I shut the door. I looked into the living room with its cobalt blue walls and navy furniture. Everything was gray. There were no colors anywhere. I thought of Ross Palmer, shuddered and grabbed my microcassette recorder, thinking, It’s battery operated; maybe…. It failed to respond. I retrieved the notebook from my briefcase and began to write this, using the sketchy notes I did yesterday as a guide. Ross Palmer says the damnedest things. He opened last week’s session with, “Dr. Baron, I can’t see you through your skin.” It’s no wonder I look forward to meeting with him more than any of my three dozen cases. His circuitous mind, albeit delusionally paranoid, is fueled by an IQ of 184. My experience with geniuses, limited to four others, taught me they usually use their wits to construct elaborate rationales to avoid facing their illnesses. Ross accepts his and has worked with me for seven years to wrestle with it. Ross, not his real name, due to his right to privacy—a joke now—is a vegetarian. He believes the increased mental illness in - 91 -

The Fine Line Issue 3  

The Fine Line presents its third compilation of art, fiction and poetry by contributors Francis Raven, Michael Young, Dorothee Lang, Raj Sha...

The Fine Line Issue 3  

The Fine Line presents its third compilation of art, fiction and poetry by contributors Francis Raven, Michael Young, Dorothee Lang, Raj Sha...

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