August 21, 2002
What's left of the day's last light hangs diffused, stubborn for a moment, not leaking, still. Diesel fumes right out of the pipe make my eyes sting, water, further distorting evening's appearance, but I know if were to reach up and rub my face, I would simply do further disservice. Second shift at the Perstorp Corp is coming to dinner break, witnessed by idling datsuns and chevys, rust and cracked vinyl on the vibrating move. I've got baseball's third inning on am radio, a throwback to the seventies transistor with a flesh colored, tightly coiled mono earpiece, listening as Andy Pettit does what he needs to do to staunch the hemorrhaging of hits as he is unexpectedly shelled, one batter after the next, through the A's entire order.
After thirteen days of record high heat, the relief of an understandable August evening brings the neighborhood to its front steps. An elderly woman, refueled from humidity's reprieve, moves effortlessly down her front cement walk to get the paper, a local afternoon edition. I've seen her often, carefully walking in a zip up moo-moo of velour or terry cloth, but tonight she is sheathed in nothing but a cream cotton shift, translucent even in twilight. Perhaps this has been her uniform during the the tropical heat of late. Her modesty is shot.
Curb berms had softened in the heat. Road asphalt had melted, pooling in uneven low lying gaps, and now the street looks misshapen and deformed before me, a gnarled black ribbon underfoot, newly hard set. My hips are jammed as my feet stumble up over old frost heaves and disappear into the newly disintegrated pot holes. I don't take care with my steps, not minding the jostling.
Posted by bethamsel at 4:15 PM