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Saturday, March 17, 2007

Silly Story About Living in The City


A man walked into a park. He decided to take a stroll. It was a sunny day, but the breeze was cool, so he decided to walk first with the sun on his back. This way, his black fleece absorbed the heat.

In the distance, he saw a crumpled figure sleeping beneath a tree. At first, he thought this was one of the park workers, taking a snooze on his break, but as he got closer he saw that the rumpled figure was homeless. There were bags tossed around the body, and a dirty blanket stretched out beneath the legs.

The man blinked and kept walking toward the homeless sleeper. He looked up at the sky, a plane barrelled by. He turned his head and noticed the roar of the freeway. He tried to block these things out. He breathed deep, remarking to himself how different dirt felt then cement. As he walked he paid close attention to the way his feet hit the earth. With each step there was a hollow thump, as if the weight of his body was going deep into the soil. "This is not like the crack of pavement," he thought "which throws my weight back. Yes, dirt is a much better place to sleep." He looked up at the homeless body and chewed his lip. "Imagine - he's found himself a haven."

These thoughts went on for a few more seconds, and the man got closer and closer to the homeless knapper. "I'll loop around him," thought the man. "Like a circuit on a race track. Loop around the body, and make my way back home." He made a tight swing around the body looking down as he went, noticing the shadows, and rumpled cloth. He looked at the face which was full of shadows and rumples too, and without warning he bent over and touched the man.

"Hey" he said. The homeless man rolled his eyes open with a grump. He snorted and breathed in saliva.

"What?" he asked sleepily. Squinting his eyes at the light.

"You look very comfy," said the man, squatting down on his haunches.

The homeless man shook his head in irritation. His eyebrows screwed up into a big knot, and then he rolled over with his back to the man.

"What do you find the earth like?" the man asked, picking some grass and running it through his fingers. "You've probably slept in some pretty tough places. I bet this is like cushions to you." The man reached down and pushed against the dirt. He looked up and thought about the way his apartment was surrounded by cement. The way his door was met by plastered steps and how he had to walk fifteen minutes to find a lawn. "Yeah, a man could live on dirt!" he said, kicking his shoes off, turning around putting his feet in the grass.

After a bit, he heard the gentle whizz of the homeless man's breath. And so the man leant back, feeling the heat from his fleece, feeling the heat from the sun, and he got sleepy. He put his head back and let the light push red through his eyelids.

In the distance, a plane flew by, three cars motored home, the electric lines buzzed over his head, but he felt the stillness of the earth beneath his body. He could smell, for the first time the scent of the evergreen above them. A small bird whistled.

This is where life should be lived, he thought. And he fell asleep.

He slept for a very long time. He slept through the afternoon. He slept through the night. He slept through the week, and soon he slept, until his boss had given up on him, and the milk had spoiled in his fridge, and the rent had come due. He slept until he lost his job. He slept until the food was alive in his cupboards. He slept until he was evicted. He slept until the park had become his home, and on that day he woke up. He saw the blue sky above him. He felt the hollow thump of dirt beneath him and he sighed happily.

"Looks like you've found a comfy spot!" yelled a woman strolling through the park. She was already barefoot too.

3 Comments:

Blogger Annie Wright said...

Why am I imagining this man as Dwayne?

12:26 AM  
Blogger Christin said...

Actually, the man is me!

9:52 PM  
Blogger Amanda said...

This is delightful!

2:39 PM  

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