Jamie Reid

If in the quickness of your step you find that small moment of not
remembrance but a short smell of the past then slowly withdraw a small
amount of favour from the mixture and recount or recant what never happened
in the waiting, wafting afternoon. Ah yes, that afternoon heady with the
fragrance on a thousand noses drawn up on the sandy beach right near
downtown. The boys were flinging bits of dog hair around with wild abandon,
the girls giggling at the boy's avid stupidity in the sunlight. The dogs
were barking manfully and woefully thecats were wailing. A few fleas hopped
on the sun-heated railing. Not that many questions were not asked. Of
course they were, and many were ready to give answers, too, not always the
right ones and sometimes far from proper. It was easy to guess who knew the
truth and who was ready to lie and lie down at the drop of a hat. The mayor
was there with his mare and govenor with his governess. The grass and all
the trees were covered with disgrace. It was just as if the Queen herself
had stopped along with the Prince of Wales, her disgraced brother, no I
mean the dim sum which the cities of the citizens take on Sunday mornings
among the Chinese on Tender, after the host at Christ Church. A few quiet
Buddhists are wandering among the noisy junkies in the park. Some cool
customers are playing at playing baseball waiting for hookers and pushers.
Push and Hook, two senior citizens, are taking the air. Nobody else will be
allowed to breath until the sun goes down, but honk your horns anyway, just
to let everybody know you're still alive. Wait for the breath of wind which
signals a change in the temperature. The train goes by about this hour
every night, holding up a lot of traffic and causing the air down there to
grow thick with the curses of the waiting commuters stuck in their cars.
Why do they call this the rush hour instead of the slow down hour? Much of
life in this city is only waiting anyway. You wait for the gas to have its
effect, for the pain to stop, for the start of the uncontrollable laughter.

The East Village Poetry Web