Haylen's Blue Sun (Toad Eyeland)
By ice rivers
Haylen rediscovered how acid both speeds things up and slows things down. She had licked the blotter of three eyed toad what seemd to be 5 minutes ago but according to the astonished clock was 120. "Whoa" she whispered. She needed to slow down. Maybe a joint, would adjust time.
Jim was along as a guide. He had rolled a few joints for the occasion. Haylen pointed to the joints. Jim handed her one. She pointed to the box of stick matches next to the stash box. Jim asked, "do you want me to light that for ya?"
Haylen gave Jim a look in return that made him regret that he had asked that question.
The matches in the matchbox were the length of a finger. Sometime earlier, Jim and Haylen were telling one match stories. They would light the match and speak whatever was on their mind until the match got too close to the finger at which point they could light another match and continue their "story". Haylen had already told a four match story about what she called metaphysiction that she had gathered during a community college class under the tutelage of Thornton Krell. Jim thought Haylen's story was both "deep "and "fucked up."
As Haylen was telling the story, she was unsure how one word was going to lead to the next word and how the word she was saying related to the words that she had said or what they had to do with the point she was trying to make which she had already forgotten but felt sure that would arrive by the time the flame kissed her finger.
She knew that she could light a goddamned match, thank you very much. Hadn't she just told a four match story.
Haylen pulled a match from the box. She noticed the white tip on the top of the match. She rubbed that tip against the striker. Nothing happened. She tried again. No ignition.
She gazed at Jim to see if he was going to try and save her which she didn't want. Jim caught her gaze and said "You got this."
Everything was happening in normal time.
She struck the match for the third time and everything slowed down again. First the match, much thinner than its length broke in two. Half of the match started heading for Haylen's face. Then that half broke in two. Now flying towards Haylen in superslow motion was a fraction of a stick attached to the red and white tip of the still unlit match. The stick and the red of the tip broke off and the white tip burst into flame like a booster rocket. Haylen was fascinated by the combustion and looked closer as the flaming comet headed towards her brain as encapsulated by her right eye. Haylen watched half of the flame drop off as it made its way to ground zero, the white of her right eye. If Haylen were a bull, this would have been a bullseye.
It landed and for a moment Haylen's brain fryed as her eye sizzled.
"Whoa" said JIm.
"Whoa" said Haylen.
"Are you okay", asked Jim.
"Yeah, I'm fine" said Haylen. "That was great"
Haylen felt illuminated and began to get a grasp of what Krell was talking about when he spoke of life as a series of spontaneous contradictions that eventually settle into a false impression and when that impression is expressed become the basis of all expressionistic creativity/impressionistic reality. Or something like that.
She knew that she had pulled off a one in a million stunt and the meaning of that moment would continue to impress her and others when she expressed the tale.
Later that night Haylen took one last look into the mirror, which she had been looking at on and off for hours. This was the last look because the three eyed toad was losing its power.
That's when she noticed the tiny brown spot on her right eye that was something other than an island on an ocean of white under a blue sun.. For a moment, she wondered what life was like on that oleander ocean and then she went to sleep wondering if the islanders happy?
If you see Haylen and she let's you look into her eyes be careful. Many people have looked too deeply and have found themselves shipwrecked with sizzling brains on that brown island amongst the moa and the toads and under the spell of Haylen's fried blue sun.