I’ve tried to stop with the booze, but the coffee continues, undiluted. This is a hellish country, New York, a kind of swamp land in the erotic endless summertime. I’m inside waiting for it to rain and refuse to leave the house until then. It’s still eighty degrees out.
Last night I had dinner with some good people and then walked a friend back up to the G train. Neither of us felt like going home, though, so we bought gum and seltzers and went into McCarren. There, immersed in the science fiction glow of the street lamps, we watched kids playing soccer and talked. On the horizon, two brighter lights, the twin beams of the memorial at ground zero.
After awhile, my friend and I laid back, propped our heads on our backpacks and looked up at the sky, which in New York is a non-sky because of light pollution. We saw nothing.
I put on music and we linked ankles.
Then my friend cried, steadily and silent. She had just lost her job, quit her boyfriend, and moved out of her apartment. She is a tiny gull lost at sea and the storm feels immense and immeasurable. She is worried she will become insane, like her mother, who lives in a home and is constantly under threat of expulsion for self-destructive behavior.
(My friend’s own behavior includes many self-destructive tendencies, but they are currently en vogue, and thus acceptable. Plus, she is very, very pretty. Both of these things make her forgivable.)
We lay and listened, touching arms and holding hands, long after the lights had been powered down and the soccer players had gone home.
Planes cruised by overhead, winking with their lights. I pointed and waved. “Look! That’s me!”
She giggled, made her right hand a gun: “Pew! Pew! Pew!”
We laughed about how young everybody looks in Brooklyn, these days, and our tendency to attract men under the age of 25.
The night wandered on and on.
“What if we fall asleep here?” she whispered, rushed and private, clutching my wrist in her fingers. “When we wake up, i’ll have to go straight to work. It’ll be the strangest thing I’ve ever had to do.”
I hope we fall asleep here! My mind sang out, joyous, and then immediately was fearful that I would awake, alone on the dirt, and my friend,
A few more days
A final Hi meeting
The local neighborhood bar has a quiet time between six and nine. It is a place that specializes in coffee, beer and seasonal menus. There is just enough of each for a satisfying snack and effective buzz. After the time when the laptop lids close and before the social gatherings start -- there is a sort of twilight*. Often this time is a fugitive ground rife with creative inspiration and meditative work -- of the kind that results in personal reward.*twilight may refer to civil, nautical or astronomical variety depending on your social or terrestrial condition
A man positions his mouse on the edge of his browser window. He clicks, holds and drags the viewport first left then right. The content of a video game promo micro site responds and adapts to the available space. To the man, this is more delightful than the game itself.
A man laboriously moves his piano down three levels onto the subway platform. Classic vocals and strided chords -- he played so well I swore he was blind. Oblivious to the heat on that August stage, he was most in touch with his audience -- whom he elevated with his music.
A woman should do exactly as she pleases no matter what a man may think.
As the Dalai Lama once said, "It is a time when there is much in the window, but nothing in the room."
"No one understands me," she said. Her grandmother was silent for a minute. It seemed she was searching for an answer in the star speckled sky. "But no one understands anyone in this world, darling. We are all unique. It is what gives us a sense of wonder."