An Informal Analysis of What It Is Like to Walk Down the Street in Summer: Short Story Preview

August 2015 - Fiction/Poetry

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The following is a preview from my upcoming short story collection. Like everything, this is an experiment.

 

Three hits of the drumsticks and the laws have changed. Sing, “All hail!” stepping through the doorway onto the stage of life: an uncommon commons, the street lived on, with sidewalk bricks painted Rainier Cherry Red, fire hydrants and speeding cars sprayed Blue Raspberry Blue, the clouds dipped in caution tape, a Neon Yellow, and all other polarized shades of life in the wind, jungle brush dandelions underfoot, and car stereos coming and going. One does not wear shoes on this occasion for the shoes are alive with their own motivations moving and presenting themselves to all others, waving. Why do I stare at you? Why do you stare at me? We stare at each other coming and going like a dance forming a line of one we waltz in front of and behind one another stepping to souls kissing brick, the chip-seal, the fat white and yellow lines now:

Lift your hands!

Everyone! Together! Separate your words from lips and appeal to one another the great unknown of past and pending and hopes and dreams one color to another introducing for the first time what will be revealed today. What is the fabric of your soul made out of? From where was it cut and how does it dye?

            Let us go then, you and I,

            When the day is spread out against the sky

            Like a fucking dolphin on heroine

The Hindenburg may or may not have just rear-ended the forty-five-degree bow of the Titanic forming a heat wave so immense that the ice burgs and hail in its wake shape-shift into pineapples bobbing rhythmically in an ocean of blue quarter-inch grids with the texture of Pepto-Bismol.

            Let us go, through all channels of this blue desert,

            The splashing commons

            Of lemonade mornings on my drift wood floor

The back of your head for hours reminding of tangled hairs past, arm labyrinths lost amongst another you knew. Her short hair kept safe in a blue sprinkled baseball cap.

            And sawdust speckles the end of the bed:

            Leading a trail of hourless thoughts

            Like freshly printed volumes on a shelf.

But the end is reached premature of anyone joining in. The sprinkle cap continues further away until she vaporizes into her destination. And it is observed before her departure from this line of sight that that blue dress was allowed to wear her body and not the other way around. We found her, aimlessly musing, making waves, and singing.

 

____

 

I remember looking across the street and seeing a fire hydrant separate only millimeters from the pavement and then all at once launching dozens of feet into the air atop a jet stream of pale blue water. It came crashing down in the driver’s seat of a parked convertible. The owner had left the top down.

I remember this. I was soaking wet and I remember this.

 

 

Blake Greene, 2016