I did not plan on being here, this late in to the summer months. I was thinking I might be In any other town. I did not plan on being here more than a few passing minutes ago though, either. I am sitting in the brush on the side of a road, talking to two stranger’s children, and waiting for fireworks to explode. One girl proclaims “I found a triangle in the stars! Oh, I found another one!”
Her father responds, “Yes, any three stars can make a triangle.”
I consider asking her if they are isosceles, equilateral, or scalene triangles, but decide to spare her parents the trouble.
When the fireworks start, is when I have to check out. Still, from a distance, the flash bang is painful, stress, borderline spasms. I divert my eyes, think of being somewhere else. The high deserts maybe, coated in charcoal shading. Wearing a buckskin bra and wool pants, teamed up with someone in woodland camouflage, we are behind schedule…when the gun [hopefully] blanks go off it’s the perfect cover to move in to our target faster…but why should I think of that? There are waterfalls of flaming elements above me now. Clouds of ash floating to the south.
I’m not sure how recently it became stressful, it does not really matter. The children give names to every shape and form that appears in the sky, “That one’s a sparkler, a galaxy, pluto!” I wonder if couples decide to have children once they realize they’re not being social enough…that they’ve not looked at the world in wonder…then again, perhaps they don’t decide. I think, if I had children they’d need someone else to take them to see fire works. I imagine them telling stories of hiding in a basement with their mother, under a blanket with a flashlight and some cans of food for a couple of days in late summer every year. Yes, if I had children, it would be unfortunate for them…
I ride my bicycle homeward, thinking of the crowds wandering the streets down town and wonder. Are there as many police officers as there were down there on May day? Probably not. Yet, during this week alone, a building was burnt down. Separately, someone else was stabbed, and their attacker was chased down by a mob and beaten and stabbed in the park down town.
I was dressed in a long black dress, fishnet stockings, combat boots, my torn up leather jacket, and a red scarf. Cruising down the hospital hill and approaching downtown, the density of patrol cars struck me as heavier than NYC. Block one, patrol car, block two several more. As I ride around the back of my destination, I spot a van full of officers in riot gear, waiting, bored. I lock up my bicycle, and wave as I walk by. Walking around to the bar, where I plan to meet my friends a wall of officers stands, encircling a small group of demonstrators. I hope no one messes up, shrug, and go inside because life must go on.