Monday, September 29, 2008

For The California Academy of Sciences

Its shells, its discards, for John McClosker and Belva Davis, for Richard Ellis, two headed albino things, for alligators floating beneath Doric columns, for the unsmelling carpet in the fish rotunda, for the inglorious Salvation Army band in the bandshell looking out over well-trimmed mulberries resembling huge knuckled bones of an extinct giant raven, for matrons and children and expatriates, for the park, which seemed, with its giant ferns and fire pines, like the last bastion of dinosaurs with maces for tails, no dead leaves among the Cypress, for Tales of the City on KQED, for the resumption of ferry service, 1989, for the Embarcadero Freeway and its shadows on the now-too-bright Ferry Building, for our babysitter’s uncle, a Welsh paraplegic who lived in the Sunset, that treeless place the dinosaurs escaped, and sailed alone to Hawaii, for the curious orange-yellow plastic window that mimicked old time windows made of beer bottles, somehow everywhere in those days, for apartment life and banana trees in atriums, like Basho’s, unproductive, elephant’s ears, for the Purple Onion when Tom in the sailor’s suit ran it, he slept on plywood suspended between sawhorses on the dancefloor – once we woke him up, and he played Jesus and Mary Chain 45s on a Fisher-Price portable record player; most of all, for Jon Moritsugu. It might be something physical, in every age and every nation, the redwood wars, the requiem shark, representing forces we just don’t understand. Tell me about it.


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