Tuesday, April 27, 2010

And Fire

The times are always strange, if you're paying
attention, if you read the small stories buried in the
back of the newspaper, if you read the newspaper at all,
if you watch the news, if you look out your window, if
you keep your ears open, if you can avert your eyes
from the mirror ball that orbits ceaselessly in your skull,
if you can pull your head out of your ass for five minutes,
if you're tuned in enough to strangeness and the bottomless
shared well of otherness that when a woman you've
never seen before turns to you at the street corner and
says, wide-eyed and in no apparent context, "I thought
there would be a lot more smoke," you nod your head,
not simply out of polite, sympathetic habit or discomfort,
but because you understand exactly what she means.

1 comment:

  1. Periodically we send our new recruits to the St. Paul campus to retrieve a box of Phantom Power. They are instructed to carry the box ankle-high, lest all the phantom power escape en route. It's a snipe hunt, of course: on their return we open the box to find it empty. "Did you carry it low, down by your ankles?" I imagine your lady on the corner was sent to a neighboring restaurant on a similar errand -- for a box of smoke, in her case. Back in the day I, too, thought there would be a lot more smoke.