No U-Turn

The Widowers

I went to a place called Black Rock

Frank T Bird
Slippery Fiction
Published in
6 min readDec 9, 2023


One of them was grey all over.

Grey eyes, grey eyebrows, grey hair, grey pubic hair (I assume)

The other was younger but fatter, almost like there was a third one and he had eaten him.

According to the Grey one, there should have been a third, but he didn’t turn up.

And I swear I heard him shouting from the Young one’s guts.

The grey one spoke about their meetup group and how his therapist had suggested it.

“My name’s Matthew,” said the Grey one.

“My name’s Luke,” said the Young one.

And there were four seconds of awkward soundlessness as they pondered the absence of the other Corinthians.

None of them seemed to have read the book on how these meetings went and so they both laughed without needing to clarify the subject of their laughter.

The waitress saved them. She was four foot nine with more metal shit in her face than T1000. And she had great tits and tattoos on her legs.

I could tell they both wanted to fuck her. But neither wanted to dishonour their dead wives. So they both ordered cappuccinos instead — one with dead soybeans, one with dead oats.

“So what did yours die of?” said the Grey one, only not those words.

“Cancer of the tits,” said the Young one, though again not quite like that.


“Cancer of the teef.”

The Young one seemed surprised. I could tell he was tryin to imagine what that might look like.

“By the end,” said the Grey one, “she looked like a fuckin horse. Her teef were so fuckin massive.”

The Young one tried not to laugh and then he laughed and the Grey one smiled with eyes like a rainforest stream in a silver mirror.

And I took a swig of cappuccino made with horses milk and I laughed too, but from behind my sunglasses so they couldn’t hear.

And the waitress with the tattooed legs and the great tits brought back their cappuccinos.

“That was quick,” said the Grey one.

“It was,” said the Young one.

Both ecstatic at the activity.

“4.5 seconds if I’m not mistaken,” said the Grey one.

“I get 4.7,” said the Young one.

After preliminary swigs and nods of approval at the taste, the Young one took out his phone and flashed a picture at the Grey one.

“She’s pretty,” said the grey one. “I’d show yer a picture of mine,” he said, “but my phones dead, just like her.”

The Young one laughed again, this time less genuinely.

And I creased my eyeballs and felt the wave of madness from their table, ripple past my ears like a translucent otter on a waterslide.

The Young one shuffled in his seat and took another swig.

“Were you married long?” he mumbled, but the phlegm got caught in his throat so he coughed and repeated.

The Grey one swallowed the last of his drink.

“Too long,” he said.

And the Young one laughed a most knocked-off laugh of around one point nine seconds.

“Thirty two years actually,” said the Grey one. “The cancer lasted for the last ten.”

The Young one nodded and finished his coffee.

“Christmas is the worst,” said the Grey one. “She always loved Christmas with the grandkids. She passed away on Christmas Eve.”

The Young one’s face turned grey. His eyes peeled back like warm grapes and he swallowed nothing but carbon dioxide.

“The last thing she said to me,” said the Grey one, “Was Merry Christmas Pat.”

The Young one’s eyes were bleeding but the Grey one just stared into the holy chasm.

And it’s all too fucking awkward for me so I pay my bill and fuck off.

So now I’m in the street thinking about those lonely bastards and their meetup group for two as I go walking by the beach to cure my saltless arsehole.

The beach is nice but the flies are terrible

And the ocean jewels wink at me by the million beckoning me to stop being a fuckwit and dive into the void.

The flies are beckoning me too but in a different way. It’s irritating but the message is the same.

Just keep looking, they say.

And there’s a sign for the cars. It says no U-Turn and it might be a metaphor for life.

My mate Martin calls me for the eighteenth time this week and tells me he doesn’t want to be here.

And I’m fucking sick of hearing it. I want to tell him about the Widowers but he doesn’t deserve it.

I’d take his six-figure job and big-titted wife and gorgeous kids and four-million dollar house on the beach any day of the fucking week.

My therapist tells me I’m impatient when people show emotion and that I’m borderline arseburger or something like that but I’m sick of hearing that too. I know she just wants to get me on drugs.

So I tell Martin that I’ve never not wanted to be here. I often wish things were different and that I had his life though, that ungrateful bastard.

Maybe I am impatient. I lack understanding when fuckers are wailing and bitching about their lives. Cos it’s just become so damn acceptable to do that these days and the second yer question it yer up in front of the Cancel Council with a metal apple in yer gob and velvet handcuffs on pleading yer damn innocence so people don’t stop readin yer books that no one reads anyway.

Mental health is important they say. And they’re right. Of course, they are. Can I go now?

So I write a long letter to every four-year-old in Gaza who’s got no legs, no home and no parents and I tell them mental health is important. Yerv gotta do yer bit in this world ya know?

“Anyway, be sure to leave it all to me in your will,” I tell Martin.

Don’t worry. I’ll send my bardo guy after him when he’s in whatever different physical situation he ends up in post-exterpation with the same torturous mind that he took with him but I can’t promise anything. Bardo guys are expensive right now, like everything.

Fuck these flies. Surely there’s some dog turd they could be enjoying.

Surely there’s some pile of mildly fermented rotten fruit out the back of the grocery store. What is it about my lips and eyeballs that require yer constant black attention?

My lips and eyeballs must be the equivalent of a young pussy to a fly. They can’t leave it the fuck alone and they’re willing to die for a lick of it like filthy men are willing to go to jail for it.

If Martin was a fly he’d just fucking bitch about my eyeballs. This pussy tastes too sweet, he’d say. The lips are too smooth and round. The golden pubes are too wispy.

Fuck it.

I could go for a swim. The salt is good. It sorts yer out though god knows why. It smells like rotten fucking fish but yer feel good after. It’s probably cos we’re as fucking disgusting as the ocean but we don’t know it cos we have Speedstick.

Biology is an unsolvable puzzle.

There’s a man walking a dog. He looks like a fat Anthony Bourdain — the man that is, not the dog. The dog looks like James Corden.

And they’re flanked by a dodgy prick on a bicycle. He smells like fentanyl. They all have that look, the junkies. He’s the kind of fuck that goes around looking for parcels on doorsteps. He’s the kind of fuck you want to club for a while with a box of unopened Pringles — just till he bruises a bit or bleeds a bit. Just enough to give him the wasted message to get his fucking life together and stop being so damn dualistic.

The sign says no U-turn and it’s a metaphor for life.

The widowers know that. They can’t bring back their wives.

Martin doesnt know it. He’s like the prick on the bike.

They need to be beaten with Pringles.

I have to leave the beach now. I can’t take the flies and their wrathful dharma.

But before I go, the salacious sky mumbles to me.

And I listen with wide open vaginal ears:

One day we’ll be alright you and me, it says.

Until then, keep left unless understanding, you knobhead.