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Kissing the oil covered feathers
by Julie Michaelson
05/27/10
For Sale
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Look at the birds
of the air,
for they neither
sow nor reap
nor gather
into barns;
yet your
Heavenly Father
feeds them.
[Matthew 6:26]
************************
"Why are you PUNISHING
US, LORD?"

[PATIENT GLANCE
DOWN ON SNIFFLING,
SNEEZING CHILD
IN THE THROES OF
ANOTHER SPRING COLD.]
"You have a cold,
My beloved.
I'm not punishing you."

(Loud squeaking, blowing
sound.)
(Honk.)
"NO! NOT ME!
Although......I don't know
why you don't give these
colds to people who are
doin' BAD STUFF!
(Honk.)
"If I've been DOING
ANYTHING BAD.....
I CERTAINLY HAVEN'T
BEEN ENJOYING IT!"

[CHUCKLE.]

(Loud snorting sound.)
(Even louder honking sound:
somewhat like the horn
of the new 'smart car',
the one that looks just
like a little toy.)
"Ya know I paid another
50 BUCKS, this year....
for another one 'a those STUPID
FLU SHOTS!"
(Blow.)

[NOD.]
"Yes,
Mein kin'der."

(Sip some hot tea.)
"YEAH! WHAT A WASTE
'A MONEY THAT WAS!"

[SOLEMN NOD.]

"The doctor said...
'Oh, this is for FREE!'
and...then, I got the
BILL IN THE MAIL!"

[TURN TO HIS RIGHT.]
[PATIENT SIGH.]

"SHEISTERS!
ONE AND ALL!"

[PATIENT NOD.]
[LISTENING TO AN
HOURLY REPORT OF
AN ANGEL WHO HAS
BEEN DOWN IN THE
OCEAN LOOKING AT
THE OIL SPILL. THE
ANGEL IS BIG AND
HUSKY, WITH A NO-NONSENSE,
STERN LOOK ON HIS FACE.
HE'S NOT ONE OF THE MUSCIAL
SINGING ANGELS. HE'S
NOT HANDSOME, AND
HE'S GOT THE MUSCLES
OF A RACE HORSE*.]
[NOD.]

"So, NU**?"

"What,
child."

"Why are you PUNISHING
the UNITED STATES?"

[PATIENT GAZE.]
[NOD TO THE STERN,
HUSKY ANGEL WHO IS
TURNING AROUND TO
GO BACK INTO THE
HORRID GULF WATERS,
TO KEEP A MINUTE-TO
-MINUTE ANGEL'S EYE
ON THE GUSHING OIL.]

(Grab another tissue.)
(Honk.)
"The CHRISTIANS
SAY YOU'RE PUNISHING
US!"

"About what,
child?"

(Snort.)
(Grimace at the apple-
cinnamon-pinky-packet
-tea that's gone luke-
warm.)
(Get up to stick mug back
in the microwave.)
"I DUNNO: SEX,
ABORTION.....
NOT HELPING ISRAEL?"

[NOD TO ANOTHER
ANGEL WHO IS STANDING
IN THE THRONE ROOM
ENTRANCE. THIS ANGEL
IS A BIT BETTER-LOOKING,
AND NOT AS HUSKY OR
STERN FACED, AND
IS CARRYING A BEAUTIFUL FLUTE.
HE'S COME TO TRY OUT A NEW MELODY
THAT HE'S WRITTEN FOR THE
HEAVEN-MID-SUMMERS-MUSICAL-
FESTIVAL THAT HAPPENS
EVERY MID-JULY.]

(Very whiny, nasally
voice inside a wad
of dirty kleenex.)
"Why don't these
people just find a
good BOOK, to READ?"

[NOD TO THE FLUTE-
BEARING ANGEL WHO
IS NOW KNEELING ON
A GREEN VELVET CUSHION,
AND TUNING UP HIS FLUTE.]
[PATIENTLY SQUINTING DOWN
UPON REALLY SCRUFFY,
SNEEZING CHILD IN
A BATTERED BATHROBE,
WADS OF TATTERED KLEENEX
STICKING OUT OF HER
BLUE-CHENEILLE POCKETS,
WHO IS NOW GULPING
DOWN SOME A&W ROOTBEER
WHILE SHE'S
WAITING FOR HER TEA
TO GET HOT.
HER MICROWAVE ISN'T ONE
OF THE MAJOR-LEAGUE
ONES. IT'S A
SMALL AFFAIR FROM WALMART.
SHE HAD A BIG FANCY
ONE, BUT IT BROKE.]
"What people are these,
child."

(Shout up to the
ceiling with a squeaky,
nasally croak.)
"All these PEOPLE
WHO ARE HAVING
WAYWARD SEX! TELL
'EM TO READ A GOOD
BOOK! IT'S MUCH MORE
SATISFYING AND LASTS
A LOT LONGER!
RELATIONSHIPS ARE
A PAIN IN THE PATTUTIES!
THEY OUGHT'A JUST READ!"

[NODDING PATIENTLY
TO THE ANGEL WHO
IS PLAYING ON HIS
NEW FLUTE. THE ANGEL'S
ONLY BEEN TAKING
FLUTE LESSONS FOR
THE PAST SIX MONTHS.
THE MELODY SOUNDS
LIKE A LITTLE BABY
CALF JUST BEFORE IT
SETTLES DOWN TO NURSE.]
"My Book,
child?"

"NEAH!
Y'URS IS TOO AWFUL
AND GORY, LORD!"
(Get up to grab onto
mug. Burn a finger,
and cuss.)
"ALL THAT
ANIMAL CRUELTY!
IT'S DISGUSTING!"
(Yawn.)
"TELL 'EM TO READ
SUE GRAFTON***! I LIKE
HER STYLE!"

[PATIENT SIGH.]
"Don't you like
My Word,
little one?"

(Stick finger into
mug. Mutter. Set
mug aside for a minute.)
(Shrug.)
"Yeah........"
(Grimace.)
(Shrug.)
"MAYBE.......
JONAH......!
IT'S THE ONLY ANIMAL
STORY IN YOUR BOOK
WITH A HAPPY ENDING!"

[PATIENT VOICE.]
"Oy vey."

(Point up at the
ceiling.)
(Croaky shout.)
"YOU SHOULD BE DOWN
THERE RIGHT NOW, LORD!
RIGHT NOW:
STICKING YOUR FINGER
IN THE LEAK, LORD! WHAT
ABOUT ALL THOSE POOR
SEA BIRDS? DON'T YOU
CARE ABOUT THEM? I
THOUGHT JESUS SAID
THAT YOU REALLY CARE
ABOUT ALL THE BIRDS?"

[SMILE.]
[TENDER VOICE.]
"Where does it
say that,
Mein kin'der?"

(Sniff.)
(Snort.)
(Grab another tissue.)
"Ya KNOW! Somewhere
in THERE!"
(Point to a big, buff-
colored, falling-
apart leather Bible
sitting under
a rather plump,
sleeping cat.)

[CHUCKLE.]
"Ah."

"And, I don't understand
what all this ABORTION is about:
when did they
stop makin' the PILL?"
(Shake scruffy head.)
(Sip some more tea.)
(Get up and slit open
another pinky-packet.
Pour contents of pinky-
packet into the mug.)
"I'm so glad, I'm
not YOUNG, ANYMORE!
TELL 'EM TO
READ A GOOD BOOK!
LESS SCHTUPPING****
AND MORE READING!
The WORLD will be
a BETTER PLACE!"

[DEEP SIGH.]
[NOD TO THE BADLY-
FLUTE-PLAYING-ANGEL
WHO'S JUST FINISHED
ON A RATHER TOO-HIGH
NOTE.]
[SQUINTING PATIENLY,
WHILE KEEPING UP WITH
SNEEZY-CHILD'S TIRADE.]

"And, Y'ur too fixated
on ISRAEL! More JEWS
live over HERE, THAN
THERE! AMERICA'S
A BETTER COUNTRY,
ANYWAY! And,
a HECK OF A LOT
PRETTIER!"

[NODDING AND SMILING
AT THE ANGEL WHO'S
JUST FINISHED HIS
NEW SUMMER-FIESTA MEDLEY.
A COUPLE OF
THE ANGELS STANDING
AROUND THE THRONE
CLAP, AND NOD
APPRECIATIVELY.]

(Look up, irritatedly
at the ceiling.)
(Totally stuffed-up sounding,
nasally-voice that was nasal
to start with: having been
born and bred in the
crowded neighborhoods of
West Philadelphia,)
"Are You LISTENING
TO ME, LORD? GO
AND FIX THAT LEAK!
FIX IT! FIX IT!"

[PATIENT FROWN.]
"Is this your reverent,
noon-hour prayer,
My child?"

(Honk noisily into another
wad of tissues.)
"YEAH!
YOU KNOW MY PRAYERS
ARE SHORT AND SWEET:
RIGHT TO THE POINT!
SPLAT!
JUST...SPIT IT OUT!"

[CHUCKLE.]

"No DILLY-DALLYING!
That's what I SAY!
JUST GET TO THE POINT
AND BE DONE WITH IT!"

[SIGH.]
"I'm listening
to you,
child."

(Irritable, stuffed-up,
croaky voice.)
"WELL, DON'T JUST LISTEN!
DO SOMETHING!
DO SOMETING!"

[SHAKING HEAD.]
[LEAN OVER TO HUG
THE ANGEL WHO'S FINISHED
HIS NOISY MUSICAL MEDLEY,
AND
HAS JUST DROPPED HIS FLUTE
ON THE GOLD-TILED FLOOR.
IT MAKES A BIG
CLATTERING NOISE,
AND THEN FALLS INTO
THE RIVER OF LIFE FLOWING
IN FRONT OF BOTH
THE THRONES.
SHEEPISHLY SMILING.,
THE ANGEL BENDS OVER
TO RETRIEVE HIS WET
FLUTE. MIRACULOUSLY,
HIS PRIZED-INSTRUMENT
ISN'T DAMAGED AT ALL.]
[THE LORD SMILES
LOVINGLY, AND NODS.]
"Child, you make
your Lord....
too small."

(Grimace at the not-
sweet-enough-tea.
Get up to go over to
kitchen drawer to pull
out another pinky-packet.)
(Cough and sneeze at the
same time.)
(Cuss.)
"What d'Ya MEAN?"

[REACHING DOWN TO
TOUCH A SMALL BIRD
THAT HAS JUST DIED
IN THE MIDDLE OF
THE OIL MUCK ALONG THE
LOUISIANA COASTLINE.]
[HOLDING THE OIL-COVERED BIRD,
TENDERLY KISSING ITS PAINFULLY
SWOLLEN, CLOSED EYES.]
"I can listen.....
and.....
....do......
at the
same
time."
************************
Therefore
do not worry about
tomorrow,
for tomorrow
will worry about
it's own things.
Sufficient for the
day
is its own
trouble.
[Matthew 6:34]
___________________________
*The author is totally
against horse racing. She
thinks all horses should
live in a beautiful, flowery
pasture, and spend their
days rolling around in the
grass, and eating lots 'a
fresh hay and apples,
and carrots, and getting brushed
and hugged every five minutes.
**Yiddish: 'So, what
happened?', 'What's goin'
on?'
***Mystery writer of
the Kinsey Milhone Mysteries.
****Yiddish: you figure
it out.


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