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539

the fan is squeaking again and i feel as though i'm one of those dogs,
you know, those dogs you see sometimes
and they stop for no reason
sniff the air and perk their ears up
because there's something that they are privy to
in their auditory world
that is far beyond what you could possibly comprehend, being a mere human

but when i hear that fan-squeak, pitched at just the right level of irritation,
i have to admit that sound is a thing with me.
i was driven to distraction the other day
when i was out for coffee (well, tea really - iced tea! it's been scorching lately!)
and i was reading a book,
a book that i like well enough,
and i was just fine for a good half hour sitting across from
two kids in one big chair with one medium sized screen-like object that they shared between them,
and their nanny sitting in the other chair, looking at a small screen,
and then this woman came in. she was meeting a friend.
she told him all about this movie she had directed
and she had this nasally pitch and this whine and she was talking about
films she didn't like (of course i loved them) and then about gay rights
(she was anti) and between the sound of her voice and the content of what she was saying...
well, it was hard to keep my eyes on the page.

the coffeehouse has these large windows. really, big ones, and they were all open to the street,
begging for a light breeze to pass through, and the chair was very comfortable,
and there's this bike rack inside the place; it's a big place! and i used to be a regular there,
when i lived about four blocks away, was that only two apartments ago? it feels like longer -
time measured in unusual increments, by apartments, pop hits, baby teeth
and was it before or after
jaime got sick and was it before or after
i let someone put ink in my skin
and was it before or after this or that
one thing that changed every thing...

i used to be sheepish about being sensitive
such a stigma that comes with that word!
but i have grown not so sheepish (but not all the way to wolfish, either)
about things because
i realize that life is too short
for me to have coffee granules stuck to my tongue
and too dear for me to sit hear bitching about a squeaky fan
but it's a too hot night
the kind where the skin of my thighs is sticking to the leather chair
the same leather chair from the late 70's
that is featured in many miscellaneous tv shows
as shorthand - like the characters, i'm not independently wealthy,
i take the hand-me-downs,
i mean they're comfortable enough, and hey worn in is the new black, isn't that right?
our chair was, in a misguided moment, spray painted green,
and the green is all cracked up,
but it's better than that fake orange leather color
that looks like nothing so much as the skin of someone
who was a little too enamored with the tanning booth.


Prose by

Name
Shay
Location
San Francisco
Mini Bio
an amalgam of coffee, bubble bath, and watercolor; treasurer of the ephemeral; wolf-song howler