The Fear of Monkeys - The Best E-Zine on the Web for Politically Conscious WritingThe Senegal Galago - Issue Eleven
The Fear of Monkeys
Get To Know

The Senegal Galago, photo from Christian ArtusoThe Senegal Galago, or the lesser bush baby, is a small (130mm and 95-300 grams) nocturnal primate. They are agile leapers, and live in dry woodland regions and savannah regions of Africa south of the Sahara. They have woolly thick fur that ranges from silvery grey to dark brown. They have large eyes, strong hind limbs, and long tails, which help them balance. Their ears are made up of four segments that can bend back individually, to aid their hearing when hunting insects at night. Their omnivorous diet is a mixture of other small animals, including birds and insects, fruit, seeds, flowers, eggs, nuts, and tree gums. They are polygynous, and the females raise their young in nests made from leaves. They have 1-2 babies per litter, with gestation period being 110–120 days. Bush babies are born with half-closed eyes, unable to move about independently. After a few days, the mother carries the infant in her mouth, and leaves it on convenient branches while feeding. At the end of the night, group members use a special rallying call and gather to sleep in a nest made of leaves, in a group of branches, or in a hole in a tree. Their potential predators include mongooses, genets, jackals, domestic cats and dogs, raptors (especially owls), and snakes. In addition, several primates, including humans, Grey-cheeked mangabeys, blue monkeys, and chimpanzees, who have constructed spears, sometimes prey on bushbabies.


Dawn's Storm


Daniel Giardina

Rain for the past three days. The small coffee shop I frequent appears more and more abandoned. If it were not for the exceptional quality of the café mocha drinks I would otherwise not give the small corner shop my business, but I like the growing quiet, and the transient sanctuary from the gray shadowed weather.

As I get my five dollar coffee, I stare past the yogurt parfaits and turkey sandwiches of the display counter, looking at the young girl who bends over behind it. The inclement weather has led me to believe that all my harboring doubt and grief about life is not my fault, and maybe it isn't. The pictures in the corner shop are all black and gray portraits of the city in its heyday. They make me hypothesize about my father when he was young. And they also make me feel nostalgic at the thought of wandering backward through time like some drugged apostle watching the chaos of a saint's eternal punishment, or the aftermath of his swift resurrection.

The rain seems to have a constant state of upheaval over the downcast sky. The cars on the street are always present, like false American novelties or second-grade knock-offs that came after all the great wars. In fact, everything these days in America appears to be representing a state of clashing awareness and false spectacle, especially of Hollywood, in which things look inanely strung together by puppet strings dangling below a pair of tired, restless hands. Everything feels like it was made just to keep our weary hearts still beating. The industrious railroad yards with landscapes leading to New York, New Jersey, and anywhere else-every place else I'd rather be.

The tired rain keeps me like a reluctant vagabond sheltered away from the gathering storm, pent up, struggling to make sense of the tumbling vortex and cloud-lined horizon of a dream--a tree of life outside each stream lined venue and home, each blossomed facade and brick lined alley. Each hungered clockwork of our own momentary want and need. Each desire that can be bought with every new taxation and ingenuous new solution--the soul of the engine of America fading from the edges of its own turbulent and tranquil canvas. The years like a temporary madness washing the streets clean of both their salvations and sins.

The storm comes and goes as if no new territory could ever be formed in the streets, as if apocalyptic Polynesian angels dangled fruit from the saint's yearning tongue of solitude. Saint Anthony in his Roman fort, crying out to villagers for water and food through the growing systematic approach of a wakeful decay of hallucination. One day I wish to make a covenant with the sky and all its gregarious prayer work. The same goes for America and its habitually red, midsummer twilight of evening. Its highways as instrumental as the sidereal maps of collapsed stars and unstructured narratives, the lunar procession of the unkempt spirit.

The only time I saw my father truly free is when he took his black Ford Shelby Cobra on the interstate and fed its intake until the speedometer climbed to one-twenty. His squinting eyes glaring past the phosphorescence of jaundiced light, milky and fogged by rain, like today.

I wish I could say I foresee some violet colored rapture entering the dusky atmosphere of America today, and transforming all of our ashen voiced expressions and signals, but all I see is a car careening out of control, and whiskey on the breath of the driver behind the steering wheel. The dashboard nervously shuddering into an engulfing storm of reckless endangerment. I wish I could say I knew what my Father was doing when he pressed on the pedal like it was the only reward of a life of debt and bills, foreign terrain opening up past the roaming short-sidedness of his own intoxication. A child-like wonderment as he gripped the wheel with nothing but glee in his emancipated features.

Sitting in this coffee shop while it rains and the storm gathers more strength, driving home, I find myself just like my Father; corrupt traveler in a box of aluminum filled with radio static and oxygen. The tremulous light of spring above me, and below me the road and passageways of the nation, which took the pioneers, prisoners and politicians decades to interpret and navigate. Both the fleeting kingdoms of their isolation, and the intervals of their incantatory distance.

Maybe it's the coffee in all its amphetamine-fed rush of sugar to the bloodstream, coursing its way through my tired veins like an IV drip full of saline solution, except my heart beats as if it were a foreign object in the center of my chest. My mind like the ecstatic turning of channel after channel of dead air on the radio, as if all that held me in that moment was the sound of a terrible love song traveling through the ether of the luminous city at dawn.

Waltham-born Daniel Giardina became serious about writing while attending college, first cutting his teeth at local spoken word events around Boston. Giardina's subjects deal with solitude, paranoia, and personal relationships take center stage. Noted author and professor Steven Cramer, said, "Daniel pens sophisticated, fresh, and sculpted poetry." Recently, the versatile young author co-wrote two screenplays with Jean Paul DiSciscio of Overdue Films and edited works for Flag Day Productions. This publication is taken from his first memoir, titled, The Weight of The Earth Is Killing.
All Content Copyright of Fear of Monkeys