breathing in cold air
rice grains clinging together
elastic faces of babies

the fine shape of a stranger's skull
a limb falling asleep, numb
his half-empty glass of beer

    I can't remember ever seeing people joining hands around a table in a restaurant and saying grace. Twenty-something double daters, no less. In an indian restaurant, no less, below the Rama and Sita in the garden.

    However, this is only exactly as strange as everything else in the world of people. I decided to eat alone tonight, at a place i've never been, for a bit of quiet in my head. It's good to see that nearly a third of the patrons here appear to be indian. Maybe that means it's good. Maybe i'm jumping to conclusions. It's good not to have to speak. I'm intensely aware of the arrangement of the dishes and utensils. I'm intensely aware of my movements as i pick up the teacup, as i move my fork. I feel neither graceful nor clumsy. Everything just moves onward, time moving forward. It's good not to have to speak. I'm on the outside. I'm watching TV. I'm a voyeur.

    I'm playing a game. I'm inside the TV. Art is good food. I'm living inside this scenario. I make the edits. Shot: the Christians talking. They haven't eaten indian food before. Shot: the foam inside of a man's half-empty beer glass. It moves slowly. Shot: the baby wants food. A bottle is produced. A loud flaming dish comes from the kitchen. Every head turns. My tea is refilled. I turn the page.

    Loud Christian is talking about his pre-conversion arrogance. The couple waiting for their food has run out of conversation. They look around. Where am i? Living minute-to-minute. If i have a key on my chain, i'm not homeless. If the buses are not running, i can walk. If i take risks, the results are my responsibility: I don't know if i'm childish or adult. I think my life is a composition. I think the smell in here is beautiful. The rice is saffron-y. The rain is waiting.

    I'm warm. I'm fed. I've got all the grace i need right now. (You can't eat it, but it feeds you.) But where to next? What am i building towards? (i'm living for something i can't even define...)

tables and chairs falling into lines
sounds rise.

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