Poe ain’t got nothin’ on this guy. Can ya dig it? Less then two weeks left to enter our contest. This entry is painted in Dorian’s color. (Mr. Gray will see you now.)
by Judge Katz
I was afraid I would forget her face. I was afraid my persona would decay. I was afraid that time would weather our attachment. Indeed, age: the monstrous thought—born in nonexistence, forever carried in stony arms of fear. Senescence, I told her, would only act as a harbinger of havoc. Neatly furling the corners of her mouth, she smiled. The light beyond the ocular veil, the lines stemming from years of laughter: she couldn’t see it—but I could.
I passively protested from the moment I fell in love with her, derailing every flash of reverence or awe. Knowing we were in danger, I did whatever I could to prevent inexorable tragedy—a tragedy that only perseveration could beget.
I was worried over minutiae; whether I could give her the attention she deserved, whether I could give her the worship she demanded…
On the other hand, who was I to deny a goddess? To resist the woman whom I cared for so greatly? Between my art major and her Ph.D., it appeared that circumstance had ordained our relationship taboo. Regardless, I did not comprehend the mistake of concession.
It became a hopeless battle; it was something I knew I could not win. Things were crumbling faster than I could restore them. Her canthus wrinkled at every twitch. Her flaxen hair fought silvery sickness in futility. Her skin blistered from sunbathing in the courtyard. Undone by the abstract overlord of existence, His iron fist squeezed the life out of my adoration and affection.
I suffered in silence, inwardly grimacing at every turn. I solicited as much goodwill as I could, enough to keep her submerged under the placating waters of blissful ignorance.
My fears from all those years ago resurfaced with a slow but reckoning vengeance. Quickly, in ancient sagacity, I realized what I had refused to make explicit: my love was immortal—but she was not.
I had to act. I knew if I waited any longer, our love would be lost for good.
To do this, I needed her still.
It didn’t matter once I finished the painting. Upon the wall, she rests in suspended beauty for as long as my eyes can observe. After all, I prefer to admire her without getting my shovel.
13 thoughts on “Judge Katz, our own Mystery Man, spoons it out”
From elegant articulation of language, innerspection as to the trappings of love, decaying lives, festering revenge, mystical art to dark loss painted in shades of light I curtsey once more to a gentleman of artistry beyond my own ink dipped quill’s potential.
Great writing Mr. Katz!! You definitely have talent in your genes!
Bizarre story that makes me want to hold onto my seat. I don’t personally have a SciFi understanding, but I am amazed at your downright talent and creativity.
I’m so glad that you entered the contest. Please feel welcome and add to our comments.
It is obvious, Mr. Judge, your fans are anxious to know more about what twirls around your creative mind. Miryam is right in her suggestion.
Although the picture Thorn chose to accompany the story has a sci-fi appearance, Judge’s story as I read it is more suspense or even horror.
Ah ha! Wow. My type of story indeed. Love it. The words, the flow, the ending.
Dare I consider this a (sensuous but) seriously hilarious dark comedy? The flip at the end, taking all the weight and baroque description of timeless love vs. death and turning it on a pinpoint to, “yes, but die so I can keep you.” Masterfully done. I hope no offense is taken by the author. It just reminded me of what 50 shades of gray (no, I am not treating that title with any respect!) COULD have been, had the writer possessed 1.25% of the talent showed above.
Please don’t stop writing. People like me need your words!
what the hell, oops, excuse me, HECK, is a ‘canthus’?
There are more than a few words in this meaningful story that sent me on my knees to the BOOK of words. But I give the author credit for the message: From seeds grow the forest.
It’s so cool to read a talent evolve.
Is that the only word you had to look up? I ended up opening a separate tab for an online dictionary and kept it open until I was done reading.
(Don’t worry, Judge, I liked your story. Details are elsewhere on the page.)
Judge you continue to amaze me in your excellence of writing. This is exceptional and downright scary – your ability to take us readers into a very deep place that is know from an old soul level a deep perception. And I have to admit – I understood every word you threw at us. That is my barometer of your abilities. Keep it up. Don’t stop writing.
Age and death, do they work against each other? Even if we respond with a unanimous “no” to this simple question, your example remains quite true. The impending loss of a loved one compels us towards preservation. The preservation here seems almost evil, sinister. But the intent was pure. The piece reminds us of an inclination we all possess and I think the tone’s underlying perturbance reminds us of the opposite; physical love gives way to a love far greater: immortal, immaterial love.
I think Dorian Grey would appreciate this story very much. I always find it interesting when writers use art as form of consumption. It is very meta. The same way characters for us remain immortal within books, the love of your main character creates immortality with his painting. It is also interesting that he does not want a photograph. Assuming they exist within the story’s timeframe, we can also assume that the work that goes into the art is just as important as the art itself. I also appreciate the irony at the end with our main character trying to prevent death by having his love interest emulate it. She had to be “dead still” while alive so that she might be preserved after she dies. Great stuff.
Nearly every story posted has introductory comments written by his Moi-ness and an epilogue tacked on. Sometimes, depending on the formatting/length of the epilogue, I cannot tell where the author has left off and Thorn has started up again.
If the story’s final words are “Dead still” then I appreciate Jon Tobias’ observation that the woman was only motionless, not actually dead. But some of the best horror stories are those that don’t tell, but lead you to a point where your imagination takes over and, ultimately, you scare yourself. That is where I see this story.
On the other hand, if “getting my shovel” is the conclusion, then this is brilliant dark comedy.