from 32 pedals & 47 stops
. . .
I, dressed in a brightly colored summer dress, walk by myself down a crowded sidewalk. The sidewalk, now abutting a street heaving with motorized vehicles, swarms on the sidewalk with walkers. Some walkers are walking in my direction. Some walkers are walking in the opposite direction. Some walkers are standing still. On either side of me, neon signs strobe in storefront windows. Powered by the Colorado River, the signs read, "Open. Open. Open."
Someone walks beside me. It is the woman. The woman is gray. Her gate is slanted. She carries a video camera pointed in my direction. To me, the woman is someone to avoid, a voyeur, invasive. To the woman, I am a sight to record on film. The signs still read, "Open. Open. Open," but now, they are understood as a command.
Between the woman and I there is an aperture that self-adjusts. To each, we seem a conundrum, a question, an equation. Hence, I look directly into the lens, we each mistake each other for The Moment.
I am The Open Admission.
I am The Open Ended.
I am The Open Season.
The Open Letter.
I am The Open Faced Sandwich.
. . .
An American and a girl in light summer suits sit with each other at a table in an outdoor bar. The bar, located between two lines of rails running between the cities of Barcelona and Madrid, sits in the warm shadow of the train station. The bar is dark. The table is cool. The table is stained with round rings from condensation. Next to the table, a bamboo curtain twitches serenely in the breeze. Painted in bright red and blue-green, the curtain reads, "Anis del Toro." The American and the girl are the only people speaking English in the warm shadow.
Someone enters the shadow. It is The Moment. To The Moment, the American and the girl are merely interchangeable characters of the same short story. To the American and the girl, The Moment is a waitress whistling a ditty in the shadow. The sign still reads, "Anis del Toro," but now, the American says to The Moment, "We want two Anis del Toro."
"Do you want it with water"
"I don't know. Is it good with water?"
"It's all right."
Between the American and the girl there are tall hills. To the girl, the hills are the skin of white elephants as seen through the trees. To the American, the hills are the breasts of earth that protrude through the valleys. Hence, when The Moment proclaims, in Spanish, "The train is coming in five minutes," the American and the girl swill their drinks.
Please Please Please.
Please Please Please.
Oom Pah Pah.
Oom Pah Pah.
. . .
A thirty-year-old bride-to-be dressed in a gown of bone-colored lace stands in the wings of a very old church. Her father, a grey man dressed in a black suit and tie, stands next to her. For something old, the bride-to-be wears a vintage clasp to gather her train. For something new, she wears a bone-colored veil to cover her eyes. For something borrowed, she wears her late aunt's diamond earrings. For something blue, she wears a garter of baby blue chiffon. On the balcony above, an organist plays a prelude. The prelude is "Air From Water Music" by Handel. The bride-to-be is the only person standing in the wings.
Someone writes a letter at a desk. It is The Moment. To The Moment, the bride is a colorless composition, an imitation of the imagination. To the bride, The Moment is a colorless composition, an imitation of the imagination. The prelude is still played on the pipe organ. But now, The Moment writes a letter at a desk.
Between the bride and her father there is a bouquet of flowers. To the father, his daughter is a rose without a thorn. To the daughter, her father is a thorn without a rose. Hence, when The Moment writes, "Your communication poured vials of joy," the flower girl trips on her train.
We are gathered here together.
. . .
A forty year old man dressed in white boxer shorts and a white button down shirt stands alone in a rectangular room. The room is empty except for a carpet rolled and propped against an off-white wall. The carpet is tan. The carpet is plush. The carpet is rolled like a scroll 12 inches in diameter. The forty year old man in white boxer shorts stands in the middle of the rectangular room staring at the carpet.
At the other end of the hallway outside of the rectangular room, a woman sits on a blue milk crate unpacking a box of framed photographs. As she sits on the crate holding a broken frame, she says aloud, "Some photographs shouldn't be moved." The man in white boxer shorts hears, "Summer grasses soot the groove," as he looks through a soiled window to the straight sidewalk.
Someone walks in a linear direction on the straight sidewalk. It is The Moment. At first, the man in white boxer shorts doesn't notice The Moment's footsteps. However, when another forty year old man in a felt fedora following The Moment's footsteps looks up at the soiled window, the man in boxer shorts says, "What?"
Between the man in white boxer shorts and the man in the felt fedora there is soiled window. To each, the other is a perverted phantom, the exact opposite of what each man is. Hence, when The Moment silently reaches the intersection of two perpendicular streets, the two men look away from one another.
A Suffering Forecast.
In Some Other Photograph.
. . .
A man and a woman lie in adjoined twin beds in a dirty motel room. The door next to the twin beds leads to a bathroom whose toilet doesn't flush and whose shower spits only drizzles of cold water. The door across from the twin beds leads to a patio upon which shallow waves lash monotonously under blackened skies. On the door, a sign hangs cockeyed from a rusty tack. Printed in bold type letters, the sign reads, "Checkout: 11:00 am." The man and the woman are the only two people in the room.
Someone dreams. It is the woman. In the dream, six men peer through the window across from the twin beds. In the dream, the men whisper to one another in a foreign tongue. Hence, when the woman rouses the man lying next to her with a tap on the shoulder and says, in English, "See? There are men watching through the window. Would you do please close the curtain?" the man rises from the twin bed and walks toward the window.
At the moment that the man closes the curtain, the door across from the twin beds opens widely. The man says, "See? The men are entering our hotel room. Would you please stop making them mad?" as he climbs back into the bed.
Six men enter the room through the open doorway. The sign still reads, "Checkout: 11:00 AM," but now, there are eight people in the room: The man and the woman and six strange men.
Between the man and woman there is a small rift. To each, the other seems a fault line away. Hence, when the woman proclaims, "See? That last one was a ghost," the man and the woman look at one another and pronounce the other awake.
You are the Wake of my Wisdom.
You are the Wake of my Wishes.
You are the Wake of my Weeks.
The Wake of my Words.
The Wake of my Wild Western Open Field.