Thursday, December 11, 2008

One For The Wastrels, The Drunkards, and The Lechers

                                      (A Summer and Smoke pastiche)

So Tennessee thought of you, with a drawl and a yawn, on some July afternoon, a dashing cavalier at work on a Model-T, sweeping sweet ladies off of their feet, un-fit pieces of a puzzle on a TV tray, strangers and kindness and just surviving, drenchings with a hose held over one’s head, long hot afternoons, patience, castigations and customs and calling on neighbors, the last flickering spark of civilization, readings and refreshments, a bottle of apricot brandy. Anything goes on Moon Lake. Everything reaches up, straining for something out of the reach of human fingers. Look up. We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars. Chasing the bluebird of satisfaction. Traveling salesmen playing poker. The facts of life. A doctor would know. Spying, standing behind a curtain, in love with some trembling tacky thing with a Z in her name. She and God punishing the devil in you. No cigarettes, bad manners and self-indulgence. Tied down. Old maids who are still young. Unkind. Spreading out one’s life like a rug for her to step all over. A catfight broken up by a preacher. A hat torn from its plumage. A couple of white tablets dissolved in water. Trust. Heart like a drum, that little red fist that keeps knocking on that little black door, unable to sleep or get through the summer, one day after the other, a deep breath, another, soon you will be much better. Time is only one side of a tesseract. Pearl buttons on her blouse. Breathe. Breathe. Hold your breath. The soul is not on an anatomy chart. Love is what you bring to it. A little voice saying, “How does your blue space in running clouds go, Mr. Williams?”