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Saturday, January 31, 2015


by Martin Ott

The bankrupt SkyMall catalog may be rescued by a former Shark Tank contestant. Scott Jordan, the chief executive of a company that makes clothes with pockets specially designed for smartphones and other gadgets, plans to bid for SkyMall's assets. . . . SkyMall, a mail order catalog that has been found in seat-back pockets on airplanes for 25 years, filed for bankruptcy last week. It was famous for selling gadgets aimed at travelers, as well as variety of offbeat items like Sasquatch statues and glow in the dark toilet seats. --CNN, January 28, 2015

Catalogs floated in dark matter somewhere between seat pocket and a wrinkle in time. Where were you when the sky began raining solar-powered cooling hats and serenity cat pods? Many had just heard that the universe may not have exploded from a single point. The crowds trampled each other to catch the squirrel tree climber sculptures and plush referee turkey hats. In an alternate universe time ran backwards. Some were maimed by the dinosaur trophy friezes and peacock dreams mirrored plaques. The volley of God-hand statues with cradled cats whistled down and you reconsidered the notion of pi. Were you one of the first to catch a wrist cell phone carrier or head massagers, each one unique like melting snowflakes or conjoined twins? The fabric of the universe was weary. Millions marched with wine glass holder necklaces and alien butlers, waistband stretchers and sling couture, slumber sleeves and Siamese blankets. Nothing lasts forever except ideas of forever. Spaces between borders filled with a new theory of universal expansion. The deluge ended somewhere over the Rockies. The fasten seat belt lights dinged and you woke with dried spittle crusting lips, hoping you didn’t snore or feel up the person in the next seat over. The dream of owning everything remained. Your hand trembled to open the window shade. The person next to you sighed. The crinkle of paper. The light looking like it was made. 

A previous contributor to The New Verse News, Martin Ott is the author of six books of poetry and fiction, including the forthcoming books Underdays (University of Notre Dame Press) and Interrogations (Fomite Press).