Mark Twain and his Night Visit

(humorous short story)

“I see you plan to write a humorous short story,” a ghostly figure of Mark Twain approached my open laptop screen and threw a curious glance on a somber sofa with my sprawling body and heavy head ready to dive into a deep slumber.

“Yeah…” I tried to say something diplomatically decent and instead of it hiccupped and yawned.

Mark Twain looked through my first lines, “You gonna write about young Willy Johnson paddling his old canoe down the Mississippi River, right?”

“Yeah, it is about his fishing trip on a brand-new canoe, with a nice keeley, midnight swim, white water rapids, starry nights, shining Moon, what could be better?”

“And what?” Grey-haired master smoothed out his bow tie.

“There he will meet Mississippi Mermaid with the soul of a fairy, a heart of a cheetah, and the beauty of Reese Witherspoon…”

“A chalky chick with a flashlight in her ear?” Mark Twain frowned a bit.

“Nope, a gorgeous girl with two flashlights in her moonlit eyes!” For a while, I closed my eyes wistfully.

“And what will Willy Johnson do with her flashlight eyes?” Mark Twain span around in my adjustable leather reclining chair.

“She will shine them on water, and they will walk across on the ray of luminous light to hunt ducks with duct tape, to catch squirrels with a Squirrel Mail, to wile nutria with Nutra-sweet, and to fish carp with a fishing rod and fishing flies!”

“Very funny! And if she turns off her flashlights, won`t they get lost or get drowned on a halfway? ” The grizzled humor guru stood up and started walking back and forth.

“Nope, even if they fall…they will fall in love…and love is a powerful thing. It could pull you out of any backwater.” I tried to get up but my body didn`t obey my orders.

“Are you sure?” Mark Twain stood still and stared at my sleepy eyes.

“At first she will laugh at his girlfriend`s choice…After that, he will laugh at her boyfriend`s choice…So, love is inevitable…” I hiccupped once again.

“Very smart! And how do you want to finish your Mississippi Mermaid story?” The humor-torn veteran started his back and forth march once again.

“A happy end is the best choice! Under the influence of moonlight, cherry blossom, pussy willows and a dandelion with a large bell end, Mississippi Mermaid turned into a cheery Reese Witherspoon doppelganger  and they settled down hilariously in a wood cabin of Uncle Jim and Huckleberry Finn,” I got a sigh of relief.

“I see that you twisted your plot just a bit. Will they live all together?”

“A pinch of postmodernism will not be extra…As for ‘together’…Now I`m not ready to answer…I need time to think over your proposal,” I tried to rub my red eyes.

“Is it all?” Mark Twain put his white collar and tailcoat in order.

“Yeah. And the last stroke, hmm, bees didn`t sting them, because as you said, ‘Bees won`t sting idiots!’ They tried them lots of times…and they wouldn`t sting them!”

“Maybe, you want to add some final point, right?” The white-headed wordsmith lit a cigarette but in a while put it down.

“Why not? I guess that your quotes from ‘The Adventures of Tom Sawyer’ will suit the best. I mean “So enderth this chronicle…she makes him wash, she won`t let him sleep in the woodshed…she eats by a bell, she goes to a bed by a bell, she wakes up by a bell…It being strictly a story by a boy, it must stop here; the story couldn`t go much further, without becoming the history of a Man,” I did my best to sound sublime and sumptuous.

“Bullshit! For such scribblers like you, I wrote my late work, “How to write a story” where I explained the difference between a humorous story, comic and witty stories. I forgot to add just only one more option – bullshit story, like yours! By the way, did you read it?” The satire sage sponged the sweat of his forehead and took a seat in my office chair.

“Yeah…The classics should be respected.”

“And what precious ideas did you catch there?” He looked at the computer screen once again.

“You like grave humor and your story ‘The Golden Arm’ is just incredible!”

Mark Twain rubbed the tip of his nose trying to concentrate, “Is it all?”

“No, one more thought came to my mind, ‘Why did not you write any funny epitaph on your tombstone?”

“What? Epitaph? Do you have any ideas?” The wit wizard flashed with his axe eyes.

“Sure…for example:

‘Uncle Clemens horsed around.

Uncle Clemens played the clown.

Uncle Clemens rests in peace

Kicked the bucket saying ‘Cheese.’

Don`t you feel that here the irony is light as a spring spider web!”

“Holy crap!” Mark Twain jumped up sharply, “Why do I listen to you?! Why do I listen to all this frenzy fever? Though, maybe, you have something else?”

“He loved good stories, beer, wine.

Was happy to the age of seventy-five…”

“That`s too simple!” Mark Twain stood up ready to leave my demure den.

“How about this variant?” I cleared my throat,

“Free your breath and brain.

Unfold your soul with gain.

Catch a lame ducky crane.

Kick and twist it in Twain.

You can now dream forever.

Overcome, joke whatever.

U alright, fly wherever!

Missed by your foes and fans…”

“Absolute abracadabra! OK, I got tired of your hogwash. Therefore, I gotta get going…Though,” Mark Twain turned back and glanced at me once again. “In a while. I`ll drop in once again to see what you scrabble here. Hilarious Blotter. Bye…”

“Bye…” I plunged into a deep sleep enjoying the blurred dance of Mark Twain and Reese Witherspoon doppelganger…

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