Diamond Vehicle by Caroline Picard


diamond vehicle


She saw him sitting in the door of his motel room, half in/half out, two long legs splayed out in front of him. He looked vulnerable, wearing only underwear, and big, unlaced boots. The sun shone on his pale knees, turning them pink. She could smell his skin burning under the light — it released a special, oily perspiration that mixed with the smell of bread as he broke it open and scattered on the ground by his feet. Chipmunks and blue jays and black birds surrounded him. She smelled the sweat of his armpits as well. A hooked cane lay still by his side as though sleeping. The man kept tossing bits of bread into the parking lot. The animals clambered around his pieces. Each time he raised an arm up to toss some moist lump of food, everyone — the chipmunks, the birds, the flies, the daring field mouse — scattered out of sight.

They remained nearby, however, peering at him from a variety of hiding places. You could feel them watching. Every inanimate object felt pensive and staid, electrified by whatever creature had either hidden itself or could have hidden itself under, behind, or on top of the rotten log, the tin can, the soda dispenser, the rock, the tree, the car, the traffic cone, the empty toilet paper tube, the laundry machine, the dumpster, the ceramic dog decoration, or the large artificial boulder in the middle of the parking lot. Seconds after any piece of bread landed on the ground, each hiding place burst with such rattling force it was as though every thing had systematically birthed a myriad of living creatures, like portals expelling aliens from another world. The small furred and feathered bodies raced up like rabid beasts, suddenly fearless, to gain access to a fresh bite of bread first. The man’s hunk of food became a nexus of energy.

It made the coyote lonely to watch. “I want to play,” she thought, the biggest animal to have arrived so far.

A hawk circled above them.

Strangely, the man did not appear to be going anywhere. He was ugly. And pock marked, as one who had survived a fire. At first the coyote stayed hidden in a grove of nearby trees. Here, an old squirrel teased her about her cowardice. She began to creep closer — past the Jeffrey pine that smelled like vanilla; a family of owls lived upstairs, though they slept through the din. The coyote passed a rusted hunk of metal where the opossum slept; she heard it hissing in the dark. The coyote mocked its human hands, then crawled alongside and under a stretch of dividing hedge. Within the cage of its branches some 40 brown sparrows flitted back and forth, chattering with heckles — they mocked the coyote’s matted fur, her scrawny figure, her appetite for trash. This time the dog ignored them and kept on, stealthy as a shadow, through the parking lot of a little station where people took their cars to drink — here the ground stank like a time before the world began.

The smell made her dizzy. Only ants collected in a swarm around a nearby trashcan, and the coyote lapped them up. It was a nice treat. Sticky sweet syrup had baked into the concrete — likely what drew the ants here first — it added a nice base of sugar and artificial fruit as she smacked up the little black beasts, watching their numbers teem and she crunched their bodies to bits. A wave of frenzy spread through their numbers like a fever. The coyote licked her chops and slunk off again.

A stone’s throw away, a hummock of grass provided good cover. There she found a mound of deer waste that she risked rolling in. Having disguised herself thus, she lingered on her belly, nose down to the edge of cement that hemmed the motel parking lot, just before the laundry room; the tall man’s room stood five doors beyond. Here, she could stay down wind and see everything. She hugged the ground.
The hawk gave her away. It swooped low, and let out a piercing cry. The man’s temporary familiars froze in their tracks and met the coyote’s gaze, each one stricken with a momentary fear when they saw her yellow eyes.

Her small, unintimidating and slightly crooked face appeared out of the grass, a smudge of shit across her eyes, everyone in the parking lot began to laugh at her, emboldened by the human’s presence. So long as he was there, they were invincible. The chipmunks laughed. The fattest one raced within the reach of her paw and scolded her with its horrible squeak, as the blue jays hopped like mad and took advantage of the chipmunk’s distraction — now fighting with one another to try and lift the largest mound of bread off the ground. The coyote sat up entirely. She smiled to show her teeth until the little ones ran away. She could taste the stranger’s pheromones in the back of her throat.

“Du hast mir die ganzen Freuende verscheucht,” said the human.
Quietude expanded in the air between them that was not so light hearted as it had been before. The others noticed it too. They all but vanished. Even their old hiding places felt lifeless. She should have gone with them, but could not break away. She felt his desire to communicate, her own inability to do so, and felt suddenly overwhelmed by the sense of their parallel worlds — paraworlds — which were, for a very fleeting moment pressed up against one another. She felt him peering. She enjoyed his blindness and stared, unblinking, at the scar tissue on his face.
She liked to watch spiders make their webs, to watch them toil at delicacy. They built their homes with such learned expertise, spinning invisible canopies out of air. They built these homes of their own accord and waited at the center, for what they didn’t know. Their ten thousand eyes were too many to catch the quick zips of a fly in flight. Just as the fly’s spasmodic flight made the spider’s silken cage invisible. To the spider, the fly materialized as though out of nowhere. The fly felt like the sky — an ever encouraging and buoyant lubricant for flight — suddenly hardened, locking them into a single frame of space. Like suddenly connecting parallel lines, the fly and the spider met to eat and be eaten.
“Ich habe eine Sammlung von sieben Mandalas gesehen.” As he spoke, he tore off pieces of bread with a melodic and calming voice. Every so often he reached into the pocket of his pants and drew out a little bit of sweet, smoked meat. He threw these tiny bits at her feet. “Sie haben in der Galerie von einem Freund von mir gehangen. Sie sind ganz wunderbar. Mönche bleiben ... Man sagt, sie sind Portrait der Welt—Landkarten für die Wirklichkeit. Im Mittelpunkt von jedem Mandala liegt der Treffpunkt von den vier Ecken, dort ist Verwandlung und Erleuchtung möglich. Und dort allein. Aber wüsstest Du, das Mandala, das Du kriegst, wird jeweils anders sein und mit anderen Interessen. Dies hängt davon ab, wo Du auf dem Wege der Erleuchtung stehst.” The coyote lay down finally within reach of one of the little meat morsels. She lapped it up as quickly as possible, then swallowed a neighboring piece of bread.

“Mitten im jedem Weltall jedes Menschen, Wesens, und jeder Art braucht man eine Menge Fett. Dort, wo ich herkomme, gab es eine unterirdische Passage, eine Durchführung für Fußgänger, sie ging unter die Landstraße von einer kleiner Straße zur nächsten. Und ganz viele Drogenhändler und Fixer und Schwindler und Prostituierten haben sich zu verschiedenen Uhrzeiten gesammelt. Und dadurch wurde es eine Art Unterwelt. Von der Stadt habe ich Gelg für ein Projekt bekommen und ich habe die Durchführung mit Fett gefüllt. Bis sie komplett voll war. Und ich habe das Fett während eines Herbstes dort sitzen lassen, damit das Trauma jenes Ortes geheilt wird. Nach drei Monaten haben wir es in geschnittenen Teilen ausgeholt und ich habe diese Teile im Innenhof eines Nationalmuseums ausgestellt. Dadurch, dass sie Aufmerksamkeit bekommen haben, wurde der negativer Raum sichtbar und die originale Durchführung transformiert.” The coyote had eaten all the little bits of meat in her vicinity and waited for the man to throw more. To exude comfort, she sat down beyond the reach of his arms, yawned and began to pant.

“Und kann ich Dir etwas Fett anbieten, mein Kleines? Bist Du beim Stillen? Ich habe noch Süßigkeiten für Dich.”

The coyote stiffened as the man stood up. She eyed him warily, ready to bolt.

A blue jay laughed behind her back. “Who’s afraid this time? Not so brave are we now?”

“Be careful,” the hawk screed out to the sky.

Invisible chipmunks chuckled like a chorus. All of them gathered around the parking lot, in the shadows, watching her and the man unfold like a little drama.

In their last encounter, the coyote pulled one over the hawk. The coyote pretended to be a corpse by the river. All the birds gathered around, not believing at first that she was dead. But she lay still enough, for long enough, that eventually the fish drew near her feet and nibbled the dead skin from her toes. She resisted the urge to rise up like a knife and snap one into her mouth, but reminded herself to be still. Patience paid off. It didn’t take long before the crows were convinced of her deadness and came down from their branches. They lowered themselves through the air on wings like paper. They thumped the ground by her head when they landed, to test her deadness further. To see if she would blink. She did not. She remained steadfast, clinging to a later delight.

No matter how hard they tried, the crows could not get past her thick hide. She was too fresh to puncture with their sad little beaks. So they called out to the hawk, loud enough that everyone in the wood could hear. Even the geckos came to see. When the hawk came down, so full of himself, saying he didn’t mind, he liked to help his little brothers and sisters, to share a meal with all of his cousins. He admitted a similar trouble, however. Her hide was too thick, but being more clever than the others, he worked very hard to get inside her anus, where he knew everything would be most soft. He wriggled and pressed his small-feathered head beneath her tail.

The pain was something to remember — the coyote tried very hard to be still, even with that tiny flash-biting beak. But she managed and finally the hawk had its head all the way inside of her. He was about to start eating her intestines when she clenched her anus so tight around the its little neck, the hawk couldn’t breathe. It froze with panic, suddenly claustrophobic in its living cave. She relaxed just enough to let it gasp, enjoying the sense of it smelling her. The forest laughed. Stuck like that, no matter how much it tried to leverage its talons against her haunches, it couldn’t escape. She was too strong. Every time she laughed she felt the animal gasp for air inside. It flapped its wings aggressively at first and then pathetically, with waning strength. Everyone clapped when the coyote showed off her pretty new tail. Even the bear admired her accessory. When she let the hawk go at last, it shed all of its feathers.

She knew better than to let the tall one close the door. The stale and moldy air overwhelmed her. She almost lost her nerve and darted back outside. This was certainly a place to avoid. The carpet was a blend of chemicals, chewing gum flavor, human oils, rat dander, old skin, mold, moth bodies and moth balls; semen, blood and human waste peppered the atmosphere as well — all dead smells. The smell of the stranger was a pittance against these. She could leap past him even now. But the man had treats and she had always been curious about the indoors. For the first time she could smell for herself where those other dogs came from. If she discovered where he kept his tasty things, it would be worthwhile; their whole den full of smoked pork as they gnashed their stinky meat teeth together in joy. It was enough for a mother to lose her head.

The smoky pork was missing. She considered trying to escape again.

As her eyes adjusted to the dark room, the door clicked shut.

“I’m ROYGBIV,” he said, standing in the door. “You’re VIBYYYR.”

She didn’t understand.

“ROYGBIV,” he said again, this time pointing a thumb at his own chest first, and then pointing at her with his index finger, “VIBYYYR. What I see, ROYGBIV. And what you see, VIBYYYR.” He laughed again, chagrinned. “Als wenn ich es auf Englisch sagen würde, würdest Du verstehen.”

He laughed again, loudly this time.

The coyote barked.

He chucked her the last half of a sausage.

She gobbled it up and instantly began to growl, glancing around for an escape. She saw the window, but the curtains were drawn and she couldn’t be sure if she could jump out that way. The man picked up his cane and thumped it against the door as loud as a clap of thunder. It stung her ears, riling her into a fury of her most menacing inflections. When he did not attack, she only slunk into a corner to wait after snuffing under the crack of another door. He walked to the bed and unzipped a bag, and pulled out a blanket. He wrapped himself up.

“Um mich vor Deinen bösen Zähnen zu schützen,” he said laughing.

It was her lot to end up in strange and compromising places — she had a habit of this sort of thing. That time the raven convinced her to cut off her own foot, for instance. She’d been out hunting; she had to find food for her pups. She left them at home in their den beneath the cliff with careful instructions not to go out, in case the hawk flew by to steal one away to feed its chicks, or Sharp-elbows tricked the whole litter into slavery.

The sun was hot. It was just midday and her shadow cast neither ahead nor behind but hovered beneath her like a purple ghost on the dry earth. She came up on a large rock with a black ball of feathers standing out like a reed on its top. She had never seen anything like it before — a squat obelisque that ran parallel rather than perpendicular to the ground, fatter than long and quite round, its end tapered to a point. The dense black body sat on the rock on one foot. She admired its casual attitude but could not investigate further; the rock was too tall for her to jump up on. She snuffed the base of the boulder instead. It told her nothing except that a mole had recently slept nearby. Although the fat black body was impossible to recognize, she could tell the thing was alive. Every so often it shifted its weight slightly, and as the coyote grew more and more still, she noticed the breath passing in and out of its body. Still, the creature was impossible to decipher and when she couldn’t bear it anymore, she let out an ecstatic, pleading yelp. She whined and barked, willing the creature to give itself away.

She called out to it, under the pretense of an introduction, “Excuse me. Who are you?” but it gave no answer. She waited under another rock, watching the single-footed shard of darkness for the rest of the day, hoping to discover something about it. She stared so long into its blue-black chest; the rest of the world blinded her. Hours passed slowly. Only a lizard crossed her path, otherwise the world was lifeless. The coyote grew bored. She felt sick with the heat, growing more curious about the black thing, which seemed somehow impervious to the sun, impervious to any dietary needs. It only defecated once — a monumental event in the scheme of things. By twilight, entirely dissatisfied and stiff, the coyote wretched and promised to return tomorrow to investigate further. She had nothing to bring back to her children.

When she came back the next day, a bird’s head happened to be out from beneath its wing; she recognized her brother, the raven, and coaxed it into a conversation. Still, he had only one foot. She asked him how or why; he told her he’d cut the other one off. He had very recently decided to simplify his life and it was simpler to have one foot as opposed to two. It made life less cumbersome, he promised and the coyote believed him. She admired the raven’s ability to balance so easily.

“I never think about how complicated it is to have more than one foot,” she said.

“Oh yes. You’d be surprised how much energy and planning it takes to have two — I can’t even imagine what it’s like to have four. That sounds very complicated. You must be the sort of person who thrives with distracting circumstances. I just found, for myself, I need to focus everything in one direction,” said the raven. “As you can see, it’s helped me tremendously.”

“It’s true I have four where you only had two. And my life is quite complicated, as you say.” The coyote began to have fantasies of her own, imagining what it would be like to go about the world with just one foot — how simple and elegant life would be.
“I don’t know that I’d suggest it — the transition takes a lot of work. One has to be mentally fit. And if you’re comfortable the way you are, why change things? Some of us are meant to be excessive. You’re probably just more suited to the lifestyle of a quadruped.”

“You know, if I’m honest,” confessed the coyote, “I’ve never felt at home in my body, actually. Something always felt off. I just never knew what it was before.”

“It could be that you simply have too many feet. Certainly it’s made all the difference for me, although I am no expert.”

Despite being an altogether humiliating situation, the coyote did take some pride in knowing that she was strong enough to cut off a paw by smashing it between two very sharp rocks. Still, she resented the sound of that raven’s laugh when his second foot dropped down from his belly as she writhed in pain and bled to death.
The man switched on a light beside the bed. She could hear a squirrel pushing a nut in the attic, behind the ceiling. Its tiny nails went scriff, scritch, above them. The coyote tried to imagine how long it had been living there, then heard its nut topple over and down behind the wall. She set her nose to the landing point, wondering if she could smell the nut, first, and second if the squirrel would follow it. The room was otherwise silent; if she concentrated she could hear the man’s heart beat. The bump-bump-badump counted a slightly irregular tempo. He walked towards the second door and she lifted her head to watch. He walked through the door and closed it behind him. Everything was quiet until she heard the sound of running water. She stole towards the bag on the man’s bed, head low. Jumping up, she stuck her head inside the little cloth room. Under a stack of clean clothes, she found a jar. It was the first time she had smelled reindeer urine. She began to lick the outside of the jar, and then the inside of the bag, under his clothes — it was leather. When the tall one came back into the room and she had to retreat to her corner again and preoccupied herself, cleaning the pitch off her feet.

The man walked to the bed, opened the jar and poured some of its contents into a bowl. He opened a white box and pulled out a square, yellow stick as long as the span of his palm. He unwrapped the stick and tossed it to her. Throughout these movements, he tried to conceal every part of himself inside the woolen, soft blanket. She smelled the yellow stick at her feet. It smelled good and when she put it in her mouth, it softened. A salted cream. She liked the taste. It melted into a delicious juice as she chewed and licked at the stick in her paws, like a bone, gnawing with the side of her mouth. The taste was good but made her sick; she abandoned a small remaining nub of butter on the floor where it continued to soften and spread out.

“Fett,” the man said, “Das ist gut!” A hand emerged from behind the fabric he wore and rubbed itself in the middle, where she supposed he must have a stomach. He looked like a caterpillar with a human hat and a cane, though she was more interested in the spreading, alien blob of salted cream. It appeared to be grafting onto the carpet, bonding and extending outward as it melted.

With her so distracted, he placed the bowl of urine nearby and raised the last of the Mason jar to his own lips. The veins on his neck bulged like hard angry ropes as he tried to drink his own portion. He drank with difficulty, pinching his nose. Rancid mushrooms tinged the air but he kept on. She watched him gag several times until he swallowed everything; she then dove in, lapping up the concoction. The coyote liked the taste very much; she had never been to any Arctic region, never seen tundra — these things had never even occurred to her as possibilities — but lapping up the tangy water, she was able to map out another geography — certain passages and landscapes emerged from the margins of her experience: lichen, leaves, wild mushrooms, mountains... the coyote’s sense of the world expanded.

The man turned on a box of moving light and she threw up beside it. He preferred to slump on the floor and when he threw up, he yelled violently, evidently weak. She had great fun then, pissing on the carpet and tearing at the bed sheets with her teeth. He grew ever more passive and pale. The sound of his heart dulled as her own grew louder and more erratic. He curled up on the ground and she became playful, counting the sounds in the room, exploring various scent trails to their conclusion. He urinated in his jar and drank it again with even less composure. She howled. The man howled with her. She missed the smell of her babies and cried, until the tall one hugged her from behind. He had let his blanket go loose around him and she could see his clothes were gone. His flesh peered at her pinkly beneath the edges of his blanket. She snuffed its insides where his smell was strongest. He giggled at the wetness of her nose. They embraced one another and the coyote remembered vague old stories about bear girls and lizard boys and dogs that became human.

They began to wrestle. He still wore his blanket but rose, first to his knees, then to full height. She had forgotten how tall he was. He wrangled her around with his cane, making her bite it. She growled as much as possible, cane clenched tight in her teeth. It was a war of tugging. She tried to wring the cane’s neck but the cane was too stiff. He won. Then she won. Then he won. She bit the blanket and tore parts of it up like a rabbit’s pelt. She went for an edge of the blanket by his feet to make him dance, then pulled back squarely on her haunches, waggling her head back and forth in an attempt to tear the clothing away. He fell down and the room shook. Still, she wouldn’t let go of the blanket. The more the material pulled back, the more she lunged deeper into the fabric, to pull off more of the man’s cover. She lost track of him. His smell was everywhere. Wherever it was taught she bit, diving deeper and deeper into the blanket, to find the man and pull him out like a rabbit. When she arrived at the center of the blanket he had disappeared. She was alone in the dark; the blanket crowded around her, growing warmer. She couldn’t escape and began to fight the darkness in earnest.

When he put his boot on her neck and beat his drum, changing the vibration in the air, she felt paralyzed but nonetheless alert. Everything in the atmosphere changed. She panicked.

The tall man had tiny pupils. He flared his nostrils, hungry with anticipation. He never took his eyes off her. She imagined her children crying at home, sniffing around their den for bugs and worms, bound for a tiny, cold supper. She pitied them. The runt was going to die. Sharp-elbows would laugh at her.
She remembered crawling up on the roof of that kiva, peering down on the tall ones below. She lay on her belly on a mud roof with her head stuck through the sun shaft in the middle of the ceiling. She could see everything below where everyone gathered for a ceremony. Animals sat on the other side of the same room, watching, just as humans sat on the other side. Never before had the coyote seen animals sitting with their legs crossed. Never before had she seen animals and tall ones so comfortably assembled. Everyone watched the center of the room.

Sharp-elbows stood in the middle of the room and called the humans one by one. After a short prayer, he gave each human a large wheel. The humans leapt on the wheel and walked on it in a dance. After performing feats of strength and balance, they let themselves follow the wheel around halfway, giving over to its centripetal force — they appeared to be falling off — until each of the dancers flung their bodies through the wheel’s center. Once on the other side, they transformed into animals — all carnivorous and large: bears and cougars and eagles, a few jackals, a man-eating spider. One man became a swarm of bees. After each transformation, the animals made their way over to the animal side of the room and crossed their legs.

Someone looked up and saw her face.

She had been discovered.

She heard them coming.

They caught her hiding in a woodpile, crouched and pressed as far back under those logs as possible. They brought her inside the kiva by the scruff of her neck, inside the sorcerer’s ring. No escape came to mind and Sharp-elbows said he was forced to initiate her. Because she had seen their rituals, she had no choice but to become one of them.
When it came her turn she chose to be a cottontail rabbit; then she could easily catch any and all cottontails — they wouldn’t bother running away because she would look like them. No one in her family would ever be hungry again.

But they didn’t teach her to turn herself back to coyote form, and by the time she returned to her pups, they were so hungry that they instantly tore her to bits.
The crazed figure above her, naked now save for his boots, pulled back the curtain and cracked the window. He beat the drum harder and harder. She felt his skin resonate with her own and heard the rattling wind outside as a third presence drew near. She whined pathetically, full of fear. The human had her bound and trapped. She saw the pleasure in his eyes. Her breathing was shallow, each bang of the drum another queasy thump that tore through her body. He opened the window farther and she felt the horror of his past. She felt it in her stomach like an electric shock, smelled the pop of pine, the poison of mercury, the fizzle of fat, everything welled up inside of her in a vision of fire. He had crashed a plane in a war. Called by the man’s drum, a piece of his spirit — dislocated for so many long years — flitted against the window, then stole into the room — it circled about like a baby fly, drawn back to the human it belonged to. In order to access the human it would pass through the coyote. Helpless to steel herself against it, the coyote drew this invisible presence into herself with very thin gasps.
The coyote dreamt of a red room where a small man danced indecently while speaking backwards in a language she could finally understand. The dream was brief but from it, she would always remember grasping the color green — what would remain the flutter of an idea, always out of reach. The man slept in this red room also. He was catatonic.
When she came to, she felt something belonging to the human inside of her. He knew it too. When she woke up, he wept with joy, no longer the least bit afraid. He clasped the coyote to his breast as though they were married. She had something he needed. She felt it whispering under her fur, tickling her insides. It shared her heart, even while it was a stranger. It did not share her sense of time.

He wanted her to bite him. To get that spirit back inside of himself.

Not knowing why, she refused. She pretended to misunderstand him.

And by the first light, just as dawn broke, she leapt through the window, breaking through the screen and bounded off into the woods, back to her family, triumphant at last.

He wailed for hours behind her.

She had the stink of Human on her. At first she tried to get it off — rolled in dung, splashed in creeks, rolled in pine beds, rutted with the dingo down the road, dove in a dumpster and clambered out, teeth green with old spinach and greasy chicken bones. The stink endured. Her appetites changed — her memory came in patches like a loose transmission. It was often interrupted by other, human memories she knew could not be hers. The borders of her consciousness began to fuzz and meld with the foreign agent inside. It seemed to poison her sense of self. A tempestuous host of hours ensued, only to be forgotten and lost.
She woke up in a puddle of her family’s blood, the hides of her children bled out in their den. Her beard was covered in blood like the dirt beneath her. At first she wailed, lamenting the beast who might have done this, then heard the human sound of her voice, tasted the blood of her young and, piecing together the fragments of her dream assumed the mantle of her guilt. She ran away.

She hunted rats, and rolled in the oil that squelched off their coats when they slipped through dangerously small holes. She wooed many coyotes into her body but none coaxed the ghost away from her. She picked fights with opossums and rolled in their entrails but the stink of humankind endured until she grew used to it and forgot what it was to smell otherwise, creeping as she did, nearer and nearer the city.

As she grew used to her new psychic passenger she began to watch television through the windows of houses she was not admitted into. She began to open garage doors and front doors and refrigerator doors when no one was home. She began to swim in swimming pools late at night. She haunted the suburbs and slept under Jasmine bushes during the day, developing a taste for parakeets and popcorn topping.

She became obsessed with ottomans — the way they sat in so many living rooms, present and inanimate at once. Given the chance, she spent whole days watching one single, stuffed footstool — a thing somehow unique while being part of an infinite group of Ottomans. The impossibly large and receding infinitude of possible furniture was horrifying. Death appeared differently and drove her to the city, where she grew increasingly bold. Her sensitivity to sound changed, so profoundly, that one night she was drawn down into sewers and secret passageways, slipping through back doors, into an opera house where she lived for a month. There she watched humans enact the same musical drama on stage, night after night. Her heart nearly burst with joy when she saw a young man fashioning his sword, somehow familiar with a music she had never heard before — because the spirit inside recollected something from its own past and asserted it onto her own memory. That month was a swoon of nostalgia and champagne and she gave herself over to this strange host of memories and haunted sentiment.





German translation courtesy of Eugene Sampson
Caroline Picard is the Senior Editor of The Green Lantern Press and Blog Czar for Bad at Sports. Recent fiction, articles and comics are published/forthcoming in Paper Monument, Rattapallax, The Coming Envelope, Diner Journal, The Graphic Canon (Seven Stories), MAKE Magazine, and Everyday Genius.