This site is an archive. Content is no longer being updated.

While The World WasIn Fact Sleeping

In Fiction on May 31, 2009 at 9:40 pm

The dingy bathroom he used when he woke up to take a piss was attached to his bedroom, and one thing in it stuck out: the clean glistening mirror. It was the kind of thing only he could half-understand, why he would clean the entire bathroom very seldom yet clean the mirror daily. He saw that his hair was greasy and matted to his forehead; instead of showering, he wanted to sleep more. He had the look of someone who’d been sleeping a long time yet wasn’t done.

Many hours later, while the world was in fact sleeping, he woke up with the kind of thing he liked to be awake for: an idea, a clever phrase to start off a declaration of inhumanity. He tossed the covers from his pajama-coated legs and raced in that drunken just-woke-up way to his desk on the other side of his bedroom. His only bedroom.

Somewhere beneath publications, notebooks, and countless unorganized papers, there was buried a computer monitor. In front of that cluster there was the semi-clearing he considered his workspace, surrounded on one side by various empty containers of food or drink and random other garbage as well. His current notepad – where he kept ideas like the one that had brought him to consciousness, plus other epiphanies and things to be not forgotten – sat in the center of the clearing under a fountain pen. He sat in the hard-wooden chair – a preference of his, though he’d admit he couldn’t afford any better – and began to write. An hour later, he stopped.

The last sentence he wrote was: In these times it is important not to forget what we cannot remember.

His meaning was not a mystery, he knew what he was saying; to him it was simple and direct, and he’d not bow to anyone who’d like to pressure him in another direction of thinking. For though he was a communist man, Travis Illway stood unafraid of the mega monster, and as he signed all such dispatches as the one he’d just penned, he wrote J.N. Fabdel.

In many ways, for this naughty midnight act, for his lifestyle of do-little yet accomplish much, he was a fugitive of the society he so desperately wished to save from itself.

P. H. Madore has written a couple of books and edits dispatch litareview. In 2009 so far he has been accepted by Robot Melon, Thieves Jargon, and Mud Luscious Magazine. More at

  1. Last line I left out, “from” before “itself.” Sorry, world; wrote this piece in 2006.

  2. I love this. excellent job!

  3. I think I liked the mistake better: “… he was a fugitive of the society he so desperately wished to save itself.”

    Let society do the work, and let’s sit back and watch. We can’t be running around saving people and places and concepts that don’t want to be saved. This is philosophical Darwinism. If society cannot save itself, fuck society. Let a new one be born.

    Nice work PHM, either way.

Comments are closed.