The Five Rules
by Jason Visconti
At a certain time in the universe I was required to ring the world’s bell. No one could tinker with it, it was only mine. It was golden and statuesque and hovered with the breath of a thousand gods. Well, that’s taking it too far. A pretty thing though, too pretty to signify an apocalypse I thought. So I took out my handbook on the Ends Of Times just to make sure I was prepared.
Step 1: Stand back a safe distance. This is to make sure you are not confused in the
I backed up in the steeple, at the least I had a sense I could avoid the physical
Step 2: Do not try to calculate when you swing. Trust in the natural powers of your
So I let my arms fall limp and searched my powers.
Step 3: Do not fear what you do not know.
I studied the instrument dazzled that it would soon be in motion.
Step 4: Do not descend down the stair for your neighbors would have left.
That one was kinda poetic, wasn’t it?
And then the final rule:
Do not shirk from your duty. Obviously that will undermine the previous four rules.
Then there came the seed of resentment planted in my swinging hand: I squeezed a small fist. I did not want to stir up anything, I barely leave my own house.
“Hey you ” I said to myself, consider what happens if you don’t. The five rules having been written especially for you?
Like I said I was to act at a certain time, and I did. And I never do what I’m told.
And who the hell knows the difference.
Richard Edwards has a BFA in Creative Writing and Journalism from Bowling Green State University and an M.S. in Education from the University of Akron. Managing editor of Drunk Duck, poetry editor for Prairie Margins, reporter for Miscellany, Akron Journal, Lorain Journal, and The BG News. He has also worked as a professional writer and editor in the medical publishing industry for several years. For the last 15 years Richard has also taught literature and writing at the secondary and post-secondary levels. He works much of the time with at-risk students.