Friday, September 01, 2006

Clank; Rev

I should be on the road to Iowa. Instead, I am drinking coffee and watching the workmen lay the foundations of the new high rise building across the street. I am procrastinating.

The cranes drill large holes in the ground. I suppose the holes will be filled with concrete that will later become the pillars that found the building. I watch and tell myself I should be running away from this construction. Yet another voice tells me I should make note of the construction each day. I might learn something useful. I’ll never have the chance again to watch the construction of a tall building from a front window seat. I am related to the project.

I recall bits of conversation from yesterday.

“So, what is Lynn doing this weekend?” she asks.

I note the third person impersonal.

“I’m going to Iowa.”


I can’t let the silence be.

“I’m going to the Iowa football game on Saturday,” I say.

More silence.

What I want to say to her is that it was impolite of her to ask when she doesn’t care. But I would never say that. I swallow it as a rancorous pill not easily digested.

Steel clanks. Crane engines rev. The arc into Iowa and the past stretches before me. I do not yet have the energy to lift the anchor, cast off, and hoist the sails.

Garbage plays on the radio:

I’m only happy when it rains
I’m only happy when it’s complicated
And though I know you can’t appreciate it
I’m only happy when it rains

You know I love it when the news is bad
And why it feels so good to feel so sad
I’m only happy when it rains

Pour your misery down, pour your misery down on me
Pour your misery down, pour your misery down on me

I’m only happy when it rains
I feel good when things are going wrong
I only listen to the sad, sad songs
I’m only happy when it rains

I only smile in the dark
My only comfort is the night gone black
I didn’t accidentally tell you that
I’m only happy when it rains

You’ll get the message by the time I’m through
When I complain about me and you
I’m only happy when it rains

[. . .]

I like the beat and it’s easy to dance to, so I’ll give it a ninety-eight.

It’s break time. The clanking and revving pause. Silence of a sort.


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