I have, for this afternoon, been given the respite of the cafe without either deadline or meeting. There is sadness around me, as if the idea of literature is weeping within me. A woman at a table to my left is having to find a new home for a pair of cats, which will be separated. She is repairing the effects of the conversation.
The radio has slipped to the wacka-blast skitter that tells me a 70's tv drama is about to crash into my table. A studly cop, a mysterious host, and a superhero slink into my imagination. Somehow, the Spanish spoken at the table diagonal to the left fits this mood.
Against the emptiness, the tilting table with my decorative beverage and clear plastic pen scrapes the tiles of a future that brakes and stops at a present that passes it, until table, pen, and page are part of the past--spacetime dips further backward and I'm leaning against the pressure of a single direction.
Perhaps this episode suffers from the heavy insomnia tossed over my shoulders. Cold tea pools beneath a restless breath and my veins twitch on the beat of this music. Without the old metaphors, what would I have left?
At the information desk, a woman asks for something with the triangular face of an alien, narrow eyes seamed into her cheeks. The instant I wonder how you would read the proper distance on her countenance, how blank netlog conversations are the preparation for words alone marking meaning, I have abandoned the draft beneath me. It becomes a napkin upon which I'll catch the overflow of the afternoon.