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today

Today I board the train wild haired sleepy eyed clashing paint bespeckled clothing and nails. I close my eyes and I see half finished canvasses of endless possibilities. I can’t remember to take cookies out of the oven before I send myself barreling back there and the ordinariness of everyday blackens with neglect. Crouched safe in my subconscious for so many hours. And here I am back in the world waiting for work with white hands.

Daniel, the angular beauty of a perfectly kempt boy from upstairs “number eight” is speaking with bald rowdy waiter neighbor who weeknights rearranges furniture on my ceiling.

They look like brothers. How strange.

He grins at me briefly as I crouch to retrieve some instrument to draw with from the crumbled abyss of my purse. Mr. upstairs owns a tiny Dachshund Chihuahua mix who yawns squeaking in his arms and he apologizes for the party during pride week and I tell him all is forgiven. A raucous party upstairs from the street of the most liberal parade in this god forsaken city is completely understandable I think and say in so many words.

We talk about drunken Daniel from downstairs. The man who frightens me late Friday nights praising Jesus and metaphorically shooting invisible women in his beer and whiskey drunk haze. I remember how they howled outside our window. The child in me is angry at the renewal of the old brutality. I want to beat him into silence for frightening her awake. But I only steal glances of a ruined life through the spy glass.

And today what is left of him is an overflowing dumpster of cracked lonely furniture and fuzzy discarded orange sweaters and mysteriously pink sneakers. His couch sags beneath my kitchen window and transients and financially stable alike sift through the final legacy of his days in a shelter of his own. I save a perfectly good ceramic pot from the annuls of soil where we forget our old accoutrements.

It is strange how lonely a pile of garbage can be. How mournful a box of canned food. I wonder where he will go and my previous anger fades to regret for the choices we sometimes make and the days we fall off the edge of the earth.


2:43 p.m. - 2005-09-02
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