He dumped you; hard. You decorated his smell out of the apartment.
Later, as you chased a rag up and down the new heron-leg stools and along the front of the Uba Tooba counter; as you polished the rubber plant; gave the prayer rug a shake; combed the sand on the end table with a tiny rake; artfully managed not to disturb the bonsai or knock the crystals from advantageous points in the high corners while you dusted;
the edge of the golden gong silently sliced your index finger. A smile of blood slowly formed. Impulsively, you wiped it on the flat brass face. Your missing peace settled on the apartment like warm rain. You struck the gong and your ears echoed the thin roar, shedding voices, dislodging hurtful jibes. You struck again.
You clean weekly, since then, but gong daily. A drop of blood keeps it real. The gong is the color of rich oxblood shoe leather. You see the good place you are in reflected in its face.
It was close to 9 A.M. when he hoisted his case and stepped outside. He felt late. The day had started badly. Green Bay was out of Super Bowl contention already. Shake it off. The street was filled with black grit and slush and snow lay like old manna on strips and patches of grass. Up the street, pitch and run. Sell. Tune in. Make it.
“Look, just bear with me a minute,” he told the short, shiny man wiping the snow from a parked car. “How many ways do you know to boil an egg? One. How many ways to chew it? One. You sleep, you wake up, you chew your eggs the same way every time. Do you want to just hang around till you die of old age?”
The little man was listening. He was buying, Diskus knew. Continue reading →