Wednesday, April 29, 2015

A Quick One While Wasting Time

Wires, cords, plugs, dust, tape, old paper, old news, outdated dictionaries, manuals for equipment seven years retired.
Shadow spaces beneath drawers, filled with more papers, scraps, rubber bands, pencils, letter opener, box cutter, staple.
Chaotic arrangement and disarray, sedimentation of bureaucracy, modernist anthropology unfolded, plastered, sealed away
because no one wants to clean up what might get lost, though nothing documented means nothing remembered.
Regular patrons, regular patterns, regular habits, regular hours,
the irregular moments:
downloading a texture pack for Minecraft for a boy who types with one finger; he says I really know computers,
he wants to build one for his mother, but it's a surprise (she's sitting right there and smiles, though she's tired
and still looking for work online);
the spectrum young woman who cannot speak (pretending? uncrying unwolf?) writes-asks I call the cops to send her away
to a hospital;
sitting in a tornado proof bathroom knowing there's no cyclone coming but judging the artwork of the spectrum young man,
he asks me if I work in a restaurant, I'm wearing a black button-up, his crudely drawn heroes more dashing than anything I'll do;
mothers and children, rich retired men, poor folk on Facebook scrolling away their time, toddlers squealing and making wood puzzles clack;
a black fat fly crawls jig-jag on blinds and takes off to scare my coworker one more time (she hates anything arthropod);

The order the texts rest on the shelves is a fragile illusion. Any person simply disturbs it with a curious pull. The never-ending war is returning order to the information, but the mission of every battle is getting new information to new minds. We call it 'circulation'. It's a cycle.

It's the people who actually circulate. They are the incarnation of words gone missing inside heads now thinking.

Every irregularity is an ordinary day. Every tick on that clock is a second, but the upbeat seconds are not quite like the downbeat seconds, so thank bureaucracy for mechanical time-keeping, because I could never sit still with a digital countdown, knowing every moment is as silently useless as the next and the last.

In closing, a third of students will always end their paper with such a phrase.

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