Play-Doh in an Upside-Down World

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A bright gray-eyed, rather ponderous, large-breasted woman climbs on top and lets her inhibitions go with one enormous “sigh…” Here I am underneath, quiet . There’s no need for me to sigh. My Y chromosome is responsible for that. I reach blindly underneath my pillow to pull out an overflowing plastic container of purple Play-Doh that I’ve been collecting over the years. In my peripheral vision stands a dense, purple half-Eifel tower in front of solid oak closet doors. I imagine it will be completed one day. That spurt of imagination will remain a fantasy, however, because life would be boring without such unfulfilled aspirations. So I simply play with my purple putty. I play. I sculpt a tiny hand. I mold an inanimate head, I—She climbs down the ladder and leans over my bunk like an elephant invading my popcorn bag at the circus . “Can we do it on the top tonight? Infertility weekly said it only works when you do it on the top bunk, and we always stay on your bunk.” Smiling, I point to a squishy, purple, perfect infant sitting next to a purple penguin, and a purple turtle. Conceiving a child is easier than people think. She laughs a muted laugh that I can hear by gazing into her white, radiant, tooth filled smile.
“I think that’s why I adore you, sir…”
She climbs into the bottom bunk and we romp the night into day.
* * *



“The birds nest in my roots.
The earthworms dig through my leaves
While the rain keeps me alive ”

Approximately one-third of the tireless crowd applauds, while a couple of shaggy-haired goatee-clad roommates of mine snap their fingers in contrast. They all puff their cigarettes—their joints—at different intervals to prove their “nonconformity.” From the outside it looks like the room is made up of grainy clouds. The young men and women in the room consist of clouds. None of them are here for me specifically, the males in the crowd at least. The next band has a broken-hearted female bass player—Am I a cloud? Nonetheless, they applaud. Whether out of sheer kindness, or patronization, or honesty, they applaud, and I leave.

“What’s that purple blob on your guitar?”
It’s the bass player with a curiously fractured heart, and a sincere smile with teeth white from lack of smoke, and a mind digressing from the fact that her amplifier needs to be on stage in three . Where’s her cloud?

“It’s a Play-Doh ostrich .”

“Deep.”
Her gray-scale-rainbow eyes are suddenly visible behind a strip of cobalt bangs. With her unrestrained “Hahaha,” it’s impossible to comprehend whether she believes me or not. If she doesn’t, then I’m playfully lying…maybe it’s a peacock .
On in one.
* * *

Skye disposes her mashed carrots into every gap imaginable. The input hole in Laura’s 5-string bass wins the semi-solid orange goop today. I wittily sculpt Laura a purple replica. I smile contentedly and hand it to her. In utter annoyance, she hands me back a purple eye.
* * *

My fingers move swiftly down the solid oak neck of my only permanent soul-mate. A G sustained chord rings sweetly and indefinitely as the muted television displays deaf-friendly subtitles. “New research shows that squeezing soft clay regularly reduces the risk of arthritis in the elderly.” G major.
I turn to face my miniature purple, Play-Doh wife and whisper in a voice rusty from lack of use.
“Now isn’t that something?”
* * *
I put my little caps of skin over my eyes, much like the checkered hat above my scalp. Displaying fatigue during high-strung situations makes me feel as if life, or in this case, bringing in new life, will be as easy as sitting back and watching it behind a high definition television screen.
Six more miles until we reach our final visit to Friendly Wishes adoption center. Laura drives 35. I sense the speed limit sign says 50. Her nervousness clings to her voice. In turn, her voice clings to me. “Are you awake?” I fake a stretch and respond, “Yes,”
I’m really not.
“Just wondering…” she lies through her untainted, pearly teeth.
“You’re going…to be fine…huuhhh…We’re going…fine.”
“Did you bring the ‘welcome to your new life’ present?”
I pull out a hardened, purple, Play-Doh chicken from the depths of my pockets.
“Adam…?
The wheels rotate slower.
“Oh—Sorry.”
I dig into my other pocket to pull out a miniature, stuffed bear with an aquamarine birthstone around its neck.
Back to 35.
* * *

Roots of an upside-down tree snake their way into the sky, while I wake up in a bed of flexible palm branches, coconuts, and birds’ nests. The sky is a jade green, and the ground beneath me is an aquamarine blended with patches of intangible snow. Everything seems so normal. The purple, Play-Doh sun suggests to me “Eat the fruit off of that tree.” Rainbow, gold, and silver fruit hang off of the plethora of trees from strings of solidified dew. “This one?” I ask.
“Are you stupid?”
The Play-Doh sun points its majestic, purple ray to the rainbow cherry tree to the right of me. “Oh. Whoops.”
I bite into the fruit.
“Ow!” She interjects with a giggle. “If you’re going to bite, don’t do it that hard.”
I look at a bite mark on Laura’s shoulder. She still has her flowing, white, wedding gown on, but her veil is off to reveal her spontaneous, chestnut hair.
“It’s not my fault you space out when you play Madden, giving your wife the perfect opportunity to kick your ass.”
I let her playfully punch my ribcage.
“We’ll see,” I respond with a devilish smirk, “Who kicks whose ass when we play Mario Kart.”





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