[Image Credit: “Black Friday” by Willem de Kooning]
MY WIFE AND I HAD THE 45th PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OVER FOR DINNER
My wife and I had the 45th President of the United States over for dinner. I’d bought prime rib steaks and covered them in salt and set them on the counter for three days. I roasted asparagus with garlic. Made mashed potatoes. I put a napkin in the 45th President of the United States’ lap. I cooked the meat and let it rest. I sliced it into thick strips and poured the blood from the cutting board into a Ziplock bag to save for winter. The 45th President of the United States stabbed his fork at the strips of meat until they sprouted wings and fluttered towards the ceiling. He leaned back in his chair and slung his fork into the air but the meat flew into a dark corner of the ceiling and hung there, upside down like a bat, and wove itself into a gray cocoon until it grew too heavy and fell to the floor. The steak smashed into thousands of tiny pieces and scattered all over the linoleum. As I went to grab the broom, the 45th President of the United States said, Remind me your lovely wife’s name again? I don’t have a wife, I told him. But one day I would like to.
I MET THE 45th PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES FOR DRINKS
I met the 45th President of the United States for drinks at a hotel airport bar because he said he liked people only when they were either arriving or departing. We had too many cocktails, and we tried to play trivia but no one would let us. I ended up paying for everything. I took the 45th President back to my apartment. In the kitchen, I peeled his shirt off. He didn’t have a body under his shirt. But there was a cave. I grabbed a flashlight from the kitchen drawer, and I climbed inside the 45th president and slowly slid myself down his cool and slick surface. I heard a sound of distant water, not quite running, but not completely stagnant. The water was more of a slow dredging groan. When I saw the I-55 bridge I knew that it was the Mississippi River running through the 45th president. I clutched the river’s banks. Ran my fingers through its brittle grass. There in the dark it felt so good to be home.
THE 45TH PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES AND I PLANTED A GARDEN
The 45th President of the United States of America and I decided to plant a garden. We built planter boxes and bought dirt from a hardware store and dumped the dirt into the planter boxes and smoothed the dirt over with a shovel. We stepped back and admired our work. Now what? The 45th President of the United States said. Now we just have to plant stuff, I said. What are we going to plant? The 45th President asked. Anything we want, I said. The 45th President starting sifting through the pockets of his suit. What about this? The 45th President asked. He pulled out a small burning star and held it in his palm. We dug a hole and dropped the star in and covered it over with the black soil. The 45th President of the United States and I sat in lawn chairs and drank lemonade and waited. Every few hours we sprayed the dirt with the garden hose. The next morning, the star still hadn’t grown into anything. The 45th President of the United States grew angry, and he dug up the star and held it in his palm. The star was a small dead stone. The 45th President of the United States blew on the star as if it would flare up like an ember, and when nothing happened, The 45th President put the dead star back into his pocket.
Grant Gerald Miller was born in Memphis, Tennessee. He is currently an MFA candidate at the University of Alabama and an assistant editor at Black Warrior Review. His work has appeared or is set to appear in various journals including Hobart, Qu Magazine, Bartleby Snopes, Necessary Fiction, and Nimrod.