KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 8: August 2017
CNF: 715 words

Post DT’s Election First Hellacious Stale Breath

by Gerard Sarnat

Oy, yes we have no dark chocolate-dipped organic bananas.... Around 9PM Tuesday, which was scheduled as a lovely feast ’n sleepover celebration—actually payback for suffering those people’s cause—Buzz and Pam couldn’t stand any more so retreated to the guest room where they’re still hiding. Woe-is-me addicted and misled for the past two years, I stayed up alone voyeuring to the bitter end before turning off the pundit-predictor-pollster cloistered groupthink’s auto autopsy dissecting why the mainstream media didn’t knock on populist doors, talk to the passionate wo/man on the street, or grasp the hillbilly elegy of handmade Make Amerika Great Again yard signs among smatterings of economically depressed bigoted opioid junkie handshakes. Cough cough morning’s like waking after a loved one died. Wondering would Hillary ever appear in public again, my wife and I can’t roll out of the sack. Finally, she pulls up the shades and there’s no sun. Our kind doesn’t belong. An academic I respect writes, I’ve never felt less American or more Jewish—despite not having such a crutch, there’s an urge to cover the mirrors. We discuss packing it in, moving to join our son’s family, live off the grid on an idyllic north-country plot on the Klamath River tucked between Oregon and the Marble Mountains. That fantasy dissolves when a daughter reminds us, the hunters whom I’m told I offended at Happy Camp’s breakfast spot following George Bush’s Gore victory are now empowered to skin Daddy alive and then put Gerry on the menu.

First time since 1928, Executive branch, Senate, House—all gone. Triumphant Supreme Court appointments: Bye-bye Roe v. Wade, get used to Citizens’ United even though the winner broke the mold by employing a totally different present-tense game plan. No Obamacare, finance regulation, Paris Accords, two-state solution. Cut taxes for the rich, make another self-serving real estate killing during the subsequent recession. A friend stationed in the State Department’s Indonesian diplomatic corps sobs about how hard it is to explain Brexit redux to the world’s most populous Muslim nation. Done daydreaming that the next President might be content cavorting in the Oval Office (wearing nothing but vanity plus Commander-in-Chief epaulets and nuclear buttons) with Paula Corbin Jones instead of building walls and starting wars, homeland roundups, and purges—or on a lark revert to liberal Empire State roots—it occurs she should consider resigning, begin a coup d’état. Vive la revolution! On the other hand, alt-right white-lash wannabes like Le Pen and strongmen like the Philippines’ leader Duterte send congrats—with Putin’s Mazel Tov due soon. As antidotes to fear of clear and present danger, I scan the Federalist Papers. Upon departing the Constitutional Convention, Benjamin Franklin was said to’ve been approached by a constituent who asked him, “What kind of government did you create?” Franklin allegedly answered, “A republic, if you can keep it.”

Woody Allen named his movie Bananas ’cause there weren’t any in it. Grandchildren, whose mother just a few hours ago optimistically introduced them to democracy’s voting system, are simply too upset to go to their private school in the entitled Beverly Hills-Brentwood corridor, a dot on the electoral map’s narrow elite Pacific strip with solid red reflecting Dems’ disregard for land-locked middle American masses until reaching the equally arrogant Atlantic coast’s dark-blue rim. TV shows earnest students marching and chanting, “The Donald is not El Presidente; si se puede; love trumps hate.” Maybe I’d feel different if the roles were reversed? If Trumptown’s carnival on Harleys was protesting against HRC and her supporters, unwilling to accept Rigged results? If only Hill the Pill hadn’t committed political malpractice by not campaigning in Wisconsin’s flyover country; if only I’d cast Mom’s mail-in ballot for Jill Stein in exchange for a Green Party supporter in the Rust Belt shifting to Mrs. Clinton. Perhaps if Bernie.... What’ll we tell a newborn grandson? When less raw, ready to crawl out of my hole, where’s the path forward? Resort to The Golden Rule? Imbibe from Mamie Eisenhower’s bottle, commit serial assassinations, watch Rocky and Bullwinkle reruns, apply for Canadian citizenship? Although recreational marihuana’s declared kosher in California today, come January 20th emboldened Republican bureaucracies’ll have something else in mind. What weeds may spring from these chaotic seeds we sow?

Gerard Sarnat
Issue 8, August 2017

was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He’s the author of four books: Homeless Chronicles (2010), Disputes (2012), 17s (2014), and Melting The Ice King (2016) which included work published in Gargoyle, Lowestoft, American Journal of Poetry, and Main Street Rag. “Amber Of Memory” was the single poem chosen for his 50th college reunion symposium on Bob Dylan; The Harvard Advocate accepted a second. Mount Analogue Press selected Sarnat’s sequence, Kaddish for the Country, for distribution as a pamphlet in Seattle on Inauguration Day 2017, as well as the Washington DC and nationwide Women’s Marches. Harvard and Stanford educated, Sarnat has worked in jails, and built and staffed clinics for the marginalized. He has also been a healthcare CEO and Stanford Medical professor.

For Huffington Post and other reviews, and for readings, publications, and interviews, visit the author’s website:

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