This one is for the museum
The snow is all but gone. It wasn’t then, though. It hadn’t even been born and the skies weren’t grey yet when I entered the city. All aglow in pink like tropical plants shedding their skin. Circumnavigating the building, once, twice, out in the bracken and I guess it had snowed sometime before because I remember the snow on the ground being split like ice by ducks digging their tunnels and being chased down by peers and lovers. Give me the sweet crackle of headphones as the volume climbs past the sounds of the street. And by street I mean it could have been the paths, the road, or the whooshing of public transit. It could also have just been the street. Simple and straightforward, rushing so sound would never be able to catch up to them and instead have to be appeased by my ears.
‘One more for the road’ is just as much about people as it is about booze. And I could have been singing Cats in the shower but instead just butchered Mary Poppins. A spoonful of sugar helps the memories go down, helps the memories go down, helps the memories go down. And where even is down? I remember in Ender’s Game the portal was always down but I can’t entirely wrap my gravity-ridden mind around it.
The mural was not Diego Rivera. Was not fitted to this room. The room formed around it like tree roots descending from the glass paneled ceiling. Each movement eternally paused right before the engine took off or the steam billowed through the chamber from a depression era forge. Skin turning green in the light but the light was all manufactured, little machine men gearing themselves into place. Little silver faces with one eye between them looking at me. It could have been a smile, we could have shared a thought at that moment, we could have known the same thing at the same time and didn’t have to say it because we both knew the other knew and there were no words for it. But there was so much texture calling to me. Different floors, different walls, different plants whisping their way through like birds trapped in the airport. Typically pigeons but sometimes they still sing. And I have to tell you, I have to tell you that pigeons have songs too. Those beasts so reviled and mocked, architecture built specifically to pin them to butterfly displays or curb stomp their population in youtube videos.
I was told that the futurists would antagonize their audiences. Overselling their tickets hoping to recreate Rite of Spring with each show but you can never match the speed of airplanes with frail limbs so much more likely to shatter into dandelion puffs at the slightest breeze. That’s why we make our men out of metal and give them only the facsimile of faces. Blanknesses instead of eyes and the glimmer of your own reflection instead of smiles. They are so much larger than us and they burn down all the libraries as though we were in some retro-apocalyptic novel, as though in our fantasies.