Friday, June 20, 2014

Sometimes I think I’m the only person who still goes outside thinking something magnificent and unexpected might happen


Today I walk towards the sun, stand at the bottom of the hill before the stairs to the street above the highway overlooking the skyline, and watch the shifting colors of the leaves blowing in the wind. Halfway down the stairs there’s a friendly dog, almost too friendly because he keeps jumping up and I didn’t realize English bulldogs actually jumped. But I liked English bulldogs even before I liked dogs, so it’s okay. Also, there’s the sun, so this is a different world, flowers growing in a field which isn’t really a field, just some rocks overlooking the highway. I discover a grassy hill I’ve never seen before, walking up the hill helps to realign my feet so they don’t hurt anymore, and when I get to the top I have to step over a railing to get back to the street. Then there are the usual gay couples who ignore me. Someone points in my direction, but actually he’s pointing at a condo. I decide to go back up that hill again, so I go down a different way, and I notice someone else wearing purple pants, but actually I’m not wearing purple pants. She smiles at me, and then goes back to texting. There’s that field of bluebells again, just past the hill I’m going to walk up, and when I look at the window of a building that looks redone I see that someone is looking out but not out, and then halfway up the hill I realize it’s not as pretty this time. Maybe it’s not as pretty because I’m already thinking about writing about it, halfway up or maybe two-thirds of the way the grass turns to mud and moss and then just mud and cigarette butts, and I keep almost stepping in dog shit. I guess if people are going to smoke somewhere, it might as well be here. Back on the street, I’m walking up the hill that usually seems overwhelming but now it doesn’t, except that now the sun isn’t out anymore and I’m cold. Suddenly I’m sad too, and when I get back to my block there’s some really loud noise, maybe the construction is going on late tonight. Actually it’s someone with a leaf blower, blowing allergies right into my face, and now my head hurts. There’s a container of dental floss on a chair in the lobby of my building, I do need floss but I don’t think I want someone else’s.

2 comments:

Jed Walsh said...

I just wanted to tell you how much I love this piece, mattilda. it's one of my favorites you've posted recently. something about reading it makes me feel dizzy and calm, and sad, and wondering. for me, it plays with this funny line between waking and dreaming. and the sentences are all so gorgeous. thank you for writing and sharing it.

love, Jed

mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

Yay -- thank you, Jed! I think this one might become its own story...

Love –
mattilda