Saturday, February 26, 2011

An Origin Story

At the A&P with my mom when I separate from her somewhere, probably heading toward the candy aisle (are there baseball cards here) or the toy aisle, small among the moms and their carts, shyly glancing at other kids, some in pairs, the air-conditioning against the humid outside cooling me but also generating a sadness that I can't name, an intuition toward the artificial and the florescent as stays against something I can't name, when I find myself in the cleaning supplies aisle, inexplicably alone, and look at the looming shelves above me when I see "Pine-scented Lysol," I like pine trees, I saw them in the World Book article about Arkansas where I've decided I want to live, and I make sure no one's looking and I pull down a bottle and unscrew the top and lean in to take a heady whiff of pine—my sinuses instantly assaulted by the ammonia scourge, chemistry's attack, and with my eyes watering and desperately fighting dizziness and nausea and the white noise in my head I manage to put back the bottle and stagger down the aisle, fighting melancholy that said in a voice I understand but can't translate: There's your future.

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