Sometimes I lose my life, only to find her again in a bar, in a conversation, in a completed task, or in a run through the park. She's mine because she has a will, energy, and direction. When she walks in the sand she leaves footprints and they're often crooked, stepping to a jazz that she listens to on her own. The rest of the time I leave scarcely a toe print-jutting off the edge of the communal impression where my shapen foot doesn't quite jive with yours and yours and yours. Its our path I suppose, but we possess it soulessly, without contemplation, with a murky purpose. And all the while phantom ways dance inside my head, leaving vanishing toe prints on my play dough brain and I feel them as something that could be, that could have been. But nothing more. The impulses fade before I can shift even a little toe. To translate a potential into action, imagi
ne the neural pathways that must be run. So we walk, trod, plod, as indicated, aware of a settling unease and oblivious, just oblivious to a source, an escape, to ourselves marching to no end. And then I feel a peck on the neck or forearm and warmth spreads down my spine, into my soles and into my soul. A peck from full lips, anxious and loving, reincarnated upon meeting my molting skin. She's my life. Today I found her in the restaurants and bars of quito, as I shuddered and extended an arm and bent in a demi-plie, listening to myself dancing on my brain. And she grabbed me tight in a sprawling waltz as a stranger laid his life before my eyes. Because I saw how much deeper my feet sink with her and how good the sand feels between my toes and how much happier the course. So me and my life, I think we might shine for a while now. I think we might laugh loudly, and I think we might hope not to get lost again

miércoles, 8 de febrero de 2012

Writing I return to you.

Walking in the morning a strange clarity holds my body, standing fastened into the fog. This, where the buses rumble by and screech and much is grey and cracking pavement, is a neighborhood of intricacies. Grey walls like the grey fog.
Many forms sit. The still walls and pillars of homes jutting into and out of the fog. Vaulted roofs so the sky too must make itself triangular. The unintentional force of form. This place has more cracks than some. More colors, purple walls and purple flowers smashed into a corner, behind a chain link fence, taunting the wild yard of shadow, scattered junk and planted vegetables across the street.
The houses haunt me, are an absurd facade. Especially the orange ones. Through them I imagine a life so different from my own. Maybe a woman with long dark hair, two children, pudgy, speaking spanish, a love affair across the street, across the blue steps, crosses on the wall, jangling bracelets, collapsing on a chair after a long day's work, writing at the kitchen table, cooking pollo for her mom, wailing at an end, watching tv for hours and dancing to salsa on a packed patio miles away. Yearnings for another land. And whisps, two women with slicked back hair pushing a stroller turn past the oak bush with its thick mass of leaves, a nebulous leaf conjuring itself in my mind. But the orange here sits still.
A man in jogging shorts, curly dark hair adorning his somewhat toned arms, sweats by on the sidewalk across the street. And the street stares. He a flash, the houses a flash, intimations of a deep cycle, of the rise and fall of seasons, of life. Maybe that man is here every morning.
But I am not. I am only house-sitting at a studio apartment with exterior and interior white walls for a woman whose life I know little about, see through her books and fierce sculptures of African women. Today I wander from this sanctuary shrouded in palms growing into banana trees and gargantuan spiked plants, into the fog.
At ten am the neighborhood greets me in honking buses, tweeting birds and its stillness, its refusal to reveal anything of the intimacy that occurs beyond its straight and colored walls. Behind yards scattered with burnt wood chips, trees decked in Christmas light and porches of curved iron railing, everything cramped, everything cracking, everything a little grey. We meet in passing. The flow, the turning behind the flash is ours to sense but never know.

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