emma b. says

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

A grave lesson in apples and oranges

My house is dry, I feel empty.
Your city is soaked, teeming in emptiness.
We all have rodents.
My city is cold and damp, I've not broken a sweat in weeks.
Your city
is perfumed and rank, then again so is mine.
Your city
is bloated ghosts on street corners and the absence of rum. And the nameless and the dead clasping extinguished gas lights.
My city is hills rolling to the sea
Your city is roiling to the sea.
My city is on land fill
Your city is on wetland
Your city sits beneath a lake, a river and a sea. Your city sinks in metaphor as does mine, so let us clasp hands.

My city gazes upon the breakers, woe to us always looking down and never up.

Our cities together framing the cultural landscape from ocean to ocean, from inundated gulf to the slightly silver tinged lonesome shine of semi forgotten towns in half forgotten states across desolate landscapes, parselling out their meager pay checks to support an alien lifestyle, like we have, like we do, with particular northern stoicness, if that's a word and if it isn't too bad.

Your city is muddied, my city is blinded.

In your city, your fragile underbelly has flipped to the sky, seems your city might not be able to run from it's achilles heel. It's alright New Orleans, it's no better anywhere else, wouldn't be the first time that the poor would be referred to skittering cockroaches.

The extravagant myth of our cities is bachannal, and who on certain days could deny it, but on the other days when we hang stupified on the rungson the bus on the way to work, past the shunned and the cast off with their hands out and their permeating hunger, and the tourists, our life blood, our dollar riddled bane, with their gaping bellies full of bubba gump's shrimp dump, and the self congratualtory loving up the local merchants with their insatiable appetite for banal t-shirts.

In your city you have many more topless co-eds, but in my city we have way more gays.

So apples to oranges and oranges to apples , it would seem that the distance between us is not so great, hurricanes and earthquakes and earthquakes and hurricanes, but the sun will always melt over orange county over the indigents and the gays and we solid squalid, squaled blue denizens of the left coast.

But you in your city you get the best of both worlds, split between the sunrise and the sunset forever and not quite asleep waiting in twilight's swampy recesses for the lubricated ease of a big easy.

Your city might be the promised land, but my city is the promised end, and that is for anyone who has stood at ocean beach under a full moon and heard the ocean make lapping reproaches to the jagged end of the continental shelf.


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