Saturday, August 9, 2014

If you're feeling out of sort, go for a walk.

He walked slowly up Massachusetts Avenue, feeling vague desires and appetites, stopping to watch a female cockroach rise up like a hovercraft and run, and then sink down and rest for a moment, til finding shelter between an edge of pavement and the curb.  The night was alive.  Past the mosque, along the first railings of the bridge the weeds and ivy seemed to spill out of the park's forest with the road and the stream below.  He listened to the sounds of night, the cicadas chatter and the cricket's bowing their strings in one long note, the sleepy birds.  One growing over the sidewalk over the treated wood guardrail looked like a form of something rosemary-like, but upright, and with only a hint of fragrance when he rubbed his hand up its stalk.  The traffic slipped by here and there, a cop car with a black lady cop in front of the mosque.  Past St. Jerome he had walked, just to move his muscles, having absorbed as much of a Buñuel film with Jeanne Moreau as he could without it pressing deeper into his psyche about who and what he was.  He would walk up past the Nelson Mandela statue, up to the Khalil Gibran little park with its fountain and the mosque-like star aligned to the east across from the British Embassy, up above the cantilevered cube of the Brazilian Embassy.

It was nicer when it was still dark out, he thought, as it grew light out.  Back across the bridge suspended over the forest with the ivy and kudzu weed spilling out of it, he felt like he could have been in India for all he knew for its foreign wild weedy jungle.  But the sky reminded him that he was in the Mid-Atlantic, walking along Embassy Row.  In the daylight, though the birds had come out further, one with a plaintive cry he called back to in a holly tree, again a peep of the plaintive cry in a  single note, it grew quieter, and the sound of dump trucks thumping across the hollows of the wide street wasn't as pretty as the distant call of the train whistle huff he'd heard earlier back when it was dark out.

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