Coffee: Cafe Pajaro Extra Dark, Trader Joe’s
There was a man standing beside a cascade of trashbags piled on his porch. This was the first floor, a nearby apartment. I saw him in the dark. It was 7pm. Rain was coming down, lightly, and it was cold, breezy. The man had fingerless gloves and an iphone. He was wearing a jacket and a hood. I walked past him and was so distracted I went to the wrong car. Walking back, I heard him talking. Words get amplified in a rainstorm. It’s like you’re listening through the other end of a paper-cup phone.
“Mm,” he said, and “Uh-huh.”
I got in my car and turned the heat up. Pulling back, I saw him caught in the back-up camera. The porchlight was on, attracting ghosts of summer bugs. His face and hands were wet but he wasn’t wiping them. bits of rain made rivers on the trashbag mountain. And I was thinking, “What could there be in all those trashbags?” No-one keeps so much garbage. Or, rather, we all do, but we don’t often have the guts to throw it out.
When I came home from supper, the man – and the mountain – were gone.
Currently Reading: Another Country, James Baldwin
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Little by little I came to the conclusion that in this day and age only the garbagemen could bring a poetic thought to fruition.Wolfgang Hillbig, The Tidings of the Trees