22 June 2008


Domesticity and I have long been locked in uneasy truce. I am undomesticated and always will be, though I can play the part when called up to do so, and even enjoy some of the responsibilities of the job. Still, I chafe at unending demands, which, I suppose, is why I am out, hiking up the road in wretched heat. Outside, in the unrelenting sun, the unending demands of nature are somehow easier to stomach because here my own thoughts and ideas burn hot and glow with life. Everything seems possible. Everything seems right. And guilt, which effortlessly and unceasingly claims me as its own though I've done no wrong, doesn't exist.

Heat has a smell: the rising sap of pine, the explosive odor of eucalyptus, the maple syrup and bacon of someone's Sunday breakfast, over-irrigated grass, sweat sour with age, sweat rank with fear, sweat clean with honest exertion.

Heat has a view: my polarized sun glasses cut out the heat shimmer of the road, and so the world appears pure and clear, sharp in relief, tiny planes glowing white hot in the air, the ocean far distant, almost inviting. Looking over my shoulder for cars, I catch the movement of my own muscles under sweat wet skin.

Heat has a sound: my heart beating in irregular counterpoint to the martial cadence of "Violet Hill."

Four miles later, drenched, hollowed out, and ready to begin again.

Go listen to some good music: "Yes" from the album Viva La Vida by Coldplay.

No comments: