A straggler into my picture sale, this one went to Andrew Brechin,
Vancouver SCA geek, border guard, co-founder of the Topless
Wish Fairies, festival volunteer, & costumed Cthulu impersonator.
Your hair, it will turn white with the collected frost from your breath, but it's beautiful as long as you remember not to touch it. The sun shines for miles over the snow, glitters off your eyes, slices through your intense smile, but the cold doesn't care. Bother your frozen hair, twist a lock around a black gloved finger, and it will break with a slight crystalline sound like glancing at a lover through a rear-view mirror. The chill will have won.
No one seems to jay-walk in Calgary, I don't know why. It felt appropriate to jump from the train platform onto the street, to look around the back of a departing train to check for traffic, like it was a gesture immortalized in perfection years before I was born, waiting for us to inhabit it.
Inside the skeleton of the place, there seems to be a newborn energy, a sussurus as one wave of promise flows back and meets the next one sweeping in, like the folds of the sea worn like a dress. It will not live forever, but it seems to hold the eternal promise of apples on the tree, green as metaphorical money. Something sweet to be tasted, as long as you're willing to let it ripen.
- anatomical socks
- how to use ruroshiki
You will learn the proper art of layering clothing, treating the textures of wool and cotton like gesso and oils. Your wardrobe will acquire a tinge of plaid, a wet dog reaction to rain. Walking inside is for locals, fifteen feet up in uncomfortably crowded pathways and tunnels suspended between downtown buildings. Outside is where it's at, where all the cool kids hang, freezing.
By the day of departure, temperature adaptation had kicked in, and, except for the rumbling fixation on enthusiastically swollen hockey headlines, the newspaper was less foreign. There was becoming here, a tribe I could infiltrate. Remembering gloves had become automatic. The patterns of the one way streets, a familiar philosophy learned from a minivan.
Without mountains, the sky is unrestricted, the horizon the proverbial dog, tail wagging, waiting to run for days. Limitless. From the highway, North, the city looks like a scale model of an architect's small, commercially printed card, something kind, with a phone number on the back. Inside invisible bounds, where unkind houses melt into the prairie, the city seems like a crumpled ship, collapsing the possibilities of flight into a very long walk.
"You're doing it again." "Yes, well, so are you."