Welcome to another installment of If My Book, the Monkeybicycle feature in which authors shed light on their recently released books by comparing them to weird things. This week Gracie Bialecki writes about Purple Gold, her debut novel published by ANTIBOOKCLUB.
If Purple Gold were a plant, she’d be a strain of dank weed. Violet leaves curling against crystals which sparkle metallic when they shone in the sun. She’d grow on a LA patio in an octagonal green house. Its glass walls and ceiling trapping the sun, concentrating its energy while the fan blades spun above, peacefully keeping watch.
Her grower would greet her every morning when he stumbled out into the loud sunlight. Day already too hot and bright, and it hadn’t even started. Hello beautiful, he’d say, running his hands through her leaves, stooping to inhale her warm, skunky stink.
Her grower would try to drink his coffee—sweaty with ice cubes—smoke the first J of the day, and water her all at the same time. The lighter would be misplaced, coffee put down only to be found, warm and translucent, hours later,. He’d go light the J on the stove, and smoke it with the hose in one hand, gently soaking the soil, careful not to drench her precious leaves.
If Purple Gold were a plant, she’d be cut, trimmed and cured. Left to hang dry in a box made for just that. She’d spend weeks in a dark closet, fan cord strung underneath the door. No risking months of work for unwanted moisture. Her grower would press his finger pads into her thickening buds. Testing their density and making sure those lavender leaves curled in tight and true. Sometimes he’d flick on the light, hold a nug up to it, and watch the gold dust glitter. The gold he’d grown.
Finally the day would come when it was time to smoke Purple Gold. Her grower pressing a bud into his silver grinder, lovingly turning it as she tore apart, then tapping her fluffy powder onto a king-sized OCB. The smell of months of sun rays and black dirt, all those morning mistings wafting back up to him.
He’d get in the car, start the engine, then light up and take a long hit. Then another. And another. Making sure the joint caught and burned even. He’d back out of the driveway, windows down and radio up. Cruising west towards the Pacific with his arm resting on the door. Smoking his work. Smoking his dreams.
Gracie Bialecki is a writer and performance poet who lives in Paris, France. She is a monthly columnist for Epiphany Magazine; co-founder of Thirst, a gallery and storytelling series; and the author of Youth, a collection of poetry. Her first novel, Purple Gold, was recently released by ANTIBOOKCLUB.