Friday, August 6, 2010

Early August

Three days now I've walked with a full bag of stuff through the city, strung out on bad sleep and bad noodles. My brown pants have mustard or hot sauce stains. I don't know how the things I love have settled in my old, old bag -- I've had it for years now, since I lived on Capp Street back when we lived next to the Buddhist temple which I was always too self-conscious to visit. Who am I, so nerve-stricken to breathe the smoke of a Buddhist space?

Past the garage of the crazed grey-bearded guy who slams his sack against a tree, whose garage is always a shrine to something I can't ever understand: old maps pinned to the trunk of his car with abalone shells, an old radio sounding off between two wilting candles, lawnchairs positioned between a fat, flame-shadowed buddha, friends of grey overalls who speak to him a weird lingo about anger and determination. He sometimes recognizes me, other times he doesn't. It's fine either way because I recognize him and I know I should walk past him and greet him.

"This is the time of the great undoing" -- so my radio goes. I'm in a house where I hear the squeak of a second story mouse and the revving of so many illegal cars and the sky is red and the flags gutter at the bondage castle across the rippling rooftops. And what I am is sad.

Three days now the sky is sodden with shale-grey clouds, damp and thick with heavy blue sadness.

I am sick with sadness -- but about ready to be better.

Hallelujah? Maybe. John Cale's is still the best version.

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