Friday, April 28, 2006

Pyro Neighborhood

I pottered down the street this evening to watch the sliver of new moon rise over the river west of the Turbopalace. The air smelled like a forest on fire—one neighbor had lit up his charcoal grill for dinner, while another was stoking her new “California fire pit” on the patio. Further along I came across a repair truck from the gas company, parked at the curb with flashers on. Some residents were out on their stoop, with the gas man, pointing to an area of their property where a drunk driver had lately crashed through their fence, uprooted two shrubs, and excavated their small garden. “I can smell it right there”, the woman was saying. “And over here,” said her husband. I walked faster.

At the end of the street, where the land falls steeply away to the river, I watched planes landing at the Smallish International Jetport. As I turned for home, the Smallish City baseball team began shooting off fireworks. The iridescent colors filled the sky and reflected off window panes and car windshields. The pow! bam! pow! retort beat me back along the street. The couple and the gas man were still sniffing around. The domesticated infernos were roaring. I closed the door.

My neighborhood was one of the few to survive the Great Fire of 1866. I wonder if it feels a bit invincible.

1 Comments:

Blogger Katinka said...

Great description...

4/29/06, 3:14 PM  

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