Thursday, April 16, 2009

Goodnite Mission

I walked through the neighborhood to meet Gill for lunch. I wore a skirt in an attempt to tame the wind and coax warmer weather into the heart of spring. My hands slid into my jacket sleeves, my arms making an "O" before my stomach. I felt uniquely feminine. I didn't have to squint to protect my eyes from my whipping hair with my sunglasses on.

Through well-loved earbuds, I listened to a frequently repeated track: U2's "One Tree Hill". It rolled through my brain on tracks, slick like a neon rollercoaster carving down neuron pathways. Piles of streams of light built on each other like time-lapsed photos of the highway at night. The beat generated a 3D representation of an equalizer wave creating an earthy base for the flying vocals and instruments. And the digital glow of the song was decorated with these visions of my eyes:

Run-down victorian homes converted to apartments and shop fronts, peeling papers from hundreds of posted events on blank walls, an older man his face a crescent moon his hand holding a cup for donations, smiling workmen with heads full of sun, graffiti rambling across billboards and the sidewalks giving the city it's voice: Let's gentrify like it's going out of style! The city is a shelter for the rich! Love to love! Vegans for McCain! I love Pam!

Everything had its beat and its life and its own soundtrack. I saw the words "goodnite mission" spilled out onto the pavement by someone with a message and a paint bucket. It was slopped out of the bucket in two long curls, the density of the paint and thinness of line giving the words a delicate presence that made them a gift of love from the anonymous and eternal author.