Tuesday, November 2, 2010

NY summer with my ball

Today I thought about summer time in New York City. I loved the tunes of the sparrows, socializing on the maple tree sidewalks. The way my mom’s high heels clicked on the wooden floor of our Brooklyn brown stone. The humidity dampened its tone. The pale skin of winter was still fresh on the faces of office zombies. Nobody in the city ever got tan. The Italian pizza man had a thicker laugh when he wore his purple shorts. God that pizza was good. Flour still fresh on the crust and the sweet grease that only seemed to come from his oven. I killed napkins as a kid.

I had a blue racquet ball and I envied its energy. Nothing in the world bounced higher or faster than this humble blue companion. The promise of the park still fresh on my mother’s lips I remember I bounced that ball as hard as I could. I wanted it to show the joy I felt in my legs. It hit the edge of our stoop and shot forward into the busy yellow street. I heard my friend grope the undercarriage of an unsuspecting cab and disappear into the gutter. Shocked, stunned, and alarmed at the possibility and reality of loss, it was the first time I can honestly recall a sense of mourning. Death to a ball, death to a boyish comrade. But before my bereavement had a chance to kiss my bones, a bigger, less enthusiastic ball stumbled down the street. Even at that age I could appreciate the taste of fate. I took my new ball and lost it within weeks and my memory of it shortly thereafter. I remember it more for its birth than its life. God taught me about circles that day, and I didn’t know it until just now.

I felt an ex girlfriend kissing me this morning. I woke up to the clink of eggs in a pan and a blank beige wall. Her scent slept in my sheets. A lucid sex dream spoiled by breakfast.

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