Lucy and Kafka


We call her Lucy, the bossy little girl of Charlie Brown fame, but not today. She works better today than I’ve seen in many previous weeks, without complaints or demands other than paper and ink.

She is our printing press. And today, she thrums with literary agility.

Around me flits and buzzes my only other companion, Kafka. He makes it like he is busy, feeling the need to replace Lucy in the realm of bossiness.

“Bizz, bizz, bizz,” he says. Write, write, write.

Kafka touches my shoulder, my right elbow, and the fingernail of my left hand. I threaten him with a rolled-up newspaper from the week previous, though he knows I am not serious with each waving.

“Write, write, write,” he buzzes in my right ear.

“I’m trying,” I say, knowing he doesn’t understand.

He pesters my right earlobe, “Bizz, bizz, bizz.”

I offer him the top of my pen, “Come sit with me and help guide my hand as I complete my notes.”

Kafka pauses, lighting gently, inspects my work, and with no small amount of criticism, adding, “Bizz, bizz, bizz,” my friend, the fly, slips out the open door into the afternoon heat to return no more this day. I write, write, write to the general thrumming of Lucy as she spits out page after page of Friday’s upcoming edition, her literary agility notwithstanding.

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