14 January 2008

hobo tomb blues

I was walkin down the old train tracks by the bayou and after an hour
I had to pee. I turned toward the scrub sticking out of the retaining
wall, and lo & behold, a cinderblock house half-sunk into the
hillside. the sea had aged it past its years but it was solidly built
with a concrete slab roof wreathed in empty cigarette packs. I peered
through the tiny glassless gap of a window, which revealed the edge of
a sleeping bag and a table. upon the table was an open bible, an empty
bottle, and a fresh book of matches. the rest was darkness and I
couldnt make out if the sleeping bag was occupied.
I crept toward the low door with some perverse urge to know what
passage stood open in the bible. but as I got closer I was hit with
the ripe smell of rot, washing familiar through my memory like the 9th
ward after the Storm.
there was broken glass all over the floor--some final rage? was it Job
or the Revelations? but I remained on the threshold in the silence,
unable to enter, not knowing the fullness or emptiness reposed in that
fraying red nylon fabric.

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