KIM PETER KOVAC // Rolling
Black dye rolls through cardiac arteries, visible on a fluoroscope in a chilled
room where catheters snake from groin to heart. The newbie cardio patient
peering up at the screen guesses the artery pinched nearly shut is a souvenir of
chromosomes, cholesterol, and chicken fry. His bright eyes watch capillaries fill
with dye and he feels the catheter chattering around in his heart. A bit later, he
watches the cardiologist cut away plaque in the left circumflex artery so the dye
courses through fully and freely. The intravenous faux-Valium must have been
cranked up, since the screen blurs.
White gravy rolls slowly, like lava, off the edge of the chicken-fried steak. The
plate is on faded Formica in Austin’s Mustang restaurant, which smells like beer,
stale peanut shells, and student hormones. The waitress calls everyone ‘Hon’
and yells orders of the signature dish – “chickenfry!” – with the last syllable
sliding up to a chirp. The Texas newbie, amused, speculates what archeologists
millennia forward would find in this spot: perhaps lots of long-neck Shiner
bottles either lined up like mini-terra-cotta warriors or lying down passed out.
The cardiologist’s voice brings him up through the wet fog and he asks how long
the two films will be saved.
Kim Peter Kovac works nationally and internationally in theater for young audiences with an emphasis on new play development and networking. He tells stories on stages as producer of new plays, and tells stories in writing with lineated poems, prose poems, creative non-fiction, flash fiction, haiku, and three-line poems. He is fond of avant-garde jazz, electronica, murder mysteries, history, contemporary poetry, and travel. He and his bride of thirty years live in Alexandria, VA, with two giant Maine Coon cats and Finn, a Tibetan Terrier.