Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea. —Henry Fielding

28 December 2006

Limen 1.0

In a parking lot, seemingly abandoned on this
The first unofficial day of winter
A young man in a recklessly-driven car
Lets out a yelp, something primal (?)
I sit in a borrowed car on land that isn't mine
I wait for company, miles, miles away from home
Miles and miles away from the home before that one
I hope to keep warm in this car, biding time
Until my sister's plane lands in a few long hours
Listening to that boy's yelp
I had been thinking about liminal spaces
The snow creates a new order
Erasing paint on the streets
Eroding the rule of laws normally obeyed with diligence
A cab driver turned left on a red arrow, though there were five other cars--all of us watching him
But who was there to enforce that red arrow?
And after all, maybe the snow had shorted the system
The light was taking a long time to switch
And no one was coming anyway
Under different circumstances, maybe,
The cabby would've waited his turn, frustrated, but still
But the cold blanket of white
Creeping, finger-like
Waves of smoke on the streets
Transform us all a little
No one is about
No one will see this minor traffic transgression
And even if...
Who would argue
The roads are scary, ice-covered
Slick with frozen mud
The white and the dark, dark brown
Underneath
Cover everything
All of human history--easy to forget--so painful
We rejoice in the snow
We stop remembering why the rules exist
In the first place
We want to
And we will go back--we know we will go back
To the rules tomorrow or at the very latest on Saturday
But today
Tonight
Feel free to yelp in the parking lot of the supermarket
I, myself, ran a red light just a few hours ago