Vapid by Cooper Renner

Sure, it looked like there were grapes in his jeans. No doubt. This was his fantasy: she’d come and peel him out of his shell, not even say please. Who says please anyway? He wants to rant, he wants to be obscurantist, he wishes she’d grant him the back table at the restaurant. The one with the oil cloth. How the candles sputter over the vapid ashtray. Is it dangerous, the spilling wax? Because look! look! she’s discovering the shortening, the foreshortening, the way he’s vacuum-packed himself. And it’s–oh dear. Cider.

Cooper Renner is the author of The Tommy Plans (Spuyten Duyvil, 2014), The Goddess Moon (Ggantija 2014), an ebook novel of The Wolves of Malta, and “Coyotes,” a short story included in the anthology New Border Voices (Texas A&M University Press, 2014), Triple No. 1 (Ravenna, 2012) includes two collections of his drawings, a wordless erotic series “The Amores” and the supernatural illustrated story “The Sorrows of Young Hemdlos.” Disbelief, his novella about the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge in Malta, is available from Ravenna Press. His novels are A Spurious Death in a Foreign Country, A Death by the Sea and Dr Jesus and Mr Dead. New fiction has appeared recently in New York Tyrant, Keyhole, and other magazines.

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