Feature articles

A Death in the Family by Luke McQ (ISSUE #4)

My dog died a few days ago. It was very sad, the whole house was silent for an entire hour. My housemate and I had nothing to say to one another. We couldn’t even look at each other.

I dug a hole in the backyard and buried the dog beneath his favourite tree along with his squeaky bone. His name was Darryl.

I’m pretty sure Darryl was murdered by the guy across the road. Evidence: Darryl had hammer-like indentations on his head when we found him all crumpled up in the gutter outside our house. I scooped Darryl up in my arms and wept silently. While I did this, I also noticed the guy across the road was running water from his frontyard tap over a bloodied hammer.

Last night: Myself and my housemate are building a new dog. We use chicken wire for the body and fill it with small blocks of wood wrapped in newspaper. Each one is dipped in kerosene. The new dog’s tail is also made of newspaper. His head is a clay jar filled with stinking chicken bones from last night’s tea. We tie it all together using more wire and then wrap a thick cord of rope around his middle. This rope is his lead.

We wait until midnight and then take the new dog outside. We set his tail on fire and then my housemate grabs the dog’s lead and starts swinging the dog around his head. It whips around him once, twice, and then he lets it go and it sails through the air and through the window of the house across the road. The curtain catches on fire as it smashes through. The room is suddenly lit up. The new dog is marking territory.

The guy across the road comes running out in his undies. He is screaming, furious and nonsensical. I just shrug as he waves his arms about. The broken window behind him looks like a dragon’s mouth, still flickering and smoking. My housemate offers to piss on the fire. The guy across the road just gets angrier and starts shoving my housemate. They get into a fight. It doesn’t last long, the police and firemen arrive and it gets broken up. It looks like my housemate and I will get charged for destroying our neighbour’s front room. The guy across the road refuses to give back our new dog.

Tonight: Myself and my housemate are building a new dog. The body is a petrol can with a piece of rope hanging out of it. We are sticking shards of twisted scrap metal to the outside.

Park by Nicola Hardy (ISSUE #2)

It was very early morning and neither of us had been to sleep yet. I had just finished work and caught a cab directly to the bar. You were there and when you saw me arrive, you were like a rabbit in the headlights; maybe I was too.

I had some drinks.

I had no idea you were interested.

After a while, we pashed outside on the footpath and then somehow fell into a cab and sped off, leaving messy debris and bewildered friends behind. We kissed more in the back seat and when you pulled me on top of you, sliding your hand down my thigh, up my skirt and into my panties, I opened my mouth and raised my eyebrows, because we both soon realised that I didn’t have any on.

You went straight in and continued kissing me, and I quickly developed an absolute disregard for:

a.        the cab driver

b.        our destination


c.        pretty much anything else.

We reached our destination, untangled ourselves and emerged from the cab. At the convenience store, I checked out girlie magazines (to see if anyone I knew was in there) while you bought condoms. When we left, we held hands because it was cold and there was no one around to see and, and … and I just like fucking holding hands ok … jeeez.  We walked in the direction of your house. I’m not sure whose idea it was but one of us suggested we go into a nearby park.  The grass was verdant and about 20 centimetres of fog arose from its surface, creating a mystical and steamy apparition. As we headed down the little stony pathway we noticed a really fluffy cat a long way away from us. When we reached* a park bench, I climbed on top of you and looked down at the ground and suddenly the cat was right next to us, like some kind of fast moving Matrix animal.

On this side of town, so unfamiliar, I felt like I was in another land. In this misty light we could have been anyone, anywhere, observing the bright and mighty red and yellow structures protruding from a floor of broken glass and concrete and dirt. Somehow it reminded me of London; the washed out colours, the unexpected surroundings, the quiet noise of faraway freeway traffic. I felt so fresh after being trapped inside a club all night and all morning. The breeze was nice and cool on the bare bits of my skin and with each thrust you gave me, my knees were digging into the wooden surface of the park bench but I didn’t care. You are so big, I have to take you in a little bit at a time, otherwise it hurts too much. When you fucked me deeply, it elicited a very sparkly feeling on the top of my head, like someone had lit fireworks there or a demon was being exorcised or that your cock was trying to escape out of the top of my body.

And that mystical cat cruising around being all David Lynch-y made me wonder if it was a plot device or a metaphor or secretly a talking dwarf.

Your freshly shaven head. ­

My cool skin.

The wooden bench.

I couldn’t wait to fuck you.

I quite like fucking in parks.

*achieve, arrive, attain, bring about, bring off, carry out, conclude, consummate, do, do a bang-up job, do justice, do one proud, do the trick, effect, finish, fulfil, gain, get someplace, get there, hit, make hay, make it, manage, nail it, perform, produce, pull off, put it over, rack up, reach, realise, score, sew up, take care of, win


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