Between Places

Beneath signs.

City of the sun, salve my sins and give me second skins in half-off drive-thru plastic packets with a color for every fluorescent mood, forget the shadow. Food’s first rush shakes the rattle, hard- fisted billboards of it banging now, now, now at the table. One day I’d like to meet someone––city, are you listening your eyes in every limb the undulating spread of you––someone across the table draped in shade, can you imagine in the radiant quiet of those hands, another pulse?

Out of Sight

With Italo Calvino.

The cities were born a little at a time––not unlike poems, you said––of various inspirations. You had a habit of collecting odd strangers and mythical heroes, and notes on places that you had been, might be, would tend to imagine. What happened was not a book exactly, but a geography to move in. You mapped cities of memory, cities of desire, cities and signs. There were continuous cities and hidden cities. These cities were braided: cobweb cities across an abyss, a microscopic city, spreading. 

Watch that one, you said, and as it grew, it revealed concentric cities like tree rings. Sometimes, you said, you would come across a city that would write itself.

Into what? We wondered, and you said yes.


Inspired by Calvino’s Invisible Cities, in honor of his birthday.