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narrating nadia

29 july 1995

drawn together over jennifer
i am late riding with a greek personality
he actually does that for a living
"we might be making a CD-Rom"
I've just awoken from a waiting nap
he's been delayed driving all afternoon
even we are silent.
instead I play my show
but he says my fidelity is low
we pull to a house in a row
does everyone live the same?
except this gents garage is painted purple
and his entry table overflows with trophies
his son plays football
though his dad doesn't prefer it
he can put a ball through a wall
and he's got the escape factor
what an ideal quarterback
don't we agree.
this guy went to see methany on mariachi
and twice pantomimes shotgun shooting the samba shakers
he makes up for a boring story with enthusiasm and repetition
or at least he thinks so
I am staring out the window, silent in the back seat
depressed by the reach of urban sprawl
finally we are on tree lined roads
art show bound
I see a tree farm.
we stop by another father's house
they've all smoked pot and stayed up talking together
I see the fellas twenty years later
how could you be doing the same thing
are howard and I any different?
finally the fur lined car pulls up
we are art show arrived
Jennifer sheathed in purple
her eyes are darting quickly
obviously harried
she doesn't even linger for a look
I touch her anyway
I can't resist rubbing her back
holding her arms
she is a warm vision
Mark defers to her too,
but I feel more confident.
inside are jennifer's creations
8,500 dollar watercoloured hawaiian jungle scenes
from a distance they look alive
not just real but teeming
she, her work, dominates the show
spiritual energy, all the friendly faces
or maybe it's just this area of the country
open doored gallery, foi gras
and expensive watercoloured nature scenes
I meet freddy friendly again
talk advertising briefly with his helvetica
soon contemplating osa pick up norweigan caucasian open beauty
blue eyes blonde hair enough lips
she's friendly, and young
a student of jennifer's
purported to have quite a command of animal rendering detail
the beauty is in what you leave out
she is trying to realize
I move so fast in that relationship
I meet her dad and his partner
he's got so many happy lines around his eyes.
jennifer's fatally attracted father has been reported on the scene
keep your eye peeled for a linen coat, seventies
I see none
but mistake the older leaning foreigner by the door
my lead off line "are you jennifer's father"
do I look like I am her father?
I would be in a relationship with her, yes.
he too would be anything to her
lecherous almost
she approaches, he, widower, is trying to woo
we are laughing, looking at each other and hugging
she leaves me to this economist who travels too much to enjoy a painting in his house
but she really is a talent.
Greener pastures, pates, and potential pickups
I flee for the center of this quaint little Joan Baker gallery
where my painting comtemplation is abridged by a distinct looking woman
wearing the clothes of an advertising exec
but radiating more than commercial confidence.
her black skirt reveals a black hosed legs worth
and while her breasts look tightly constrained projecting underneath that floral silk
she covers them with another smart tight black number
a jacket which she will periodically arrange in front of her feminitity
when she's feeling protective
we even make eye contact
but I am not in a pursuing way
my shifted painting perspective
yeilds me another vision of her
she has moved into my field
in fact it's not long before
looking bold nosed back over her shoulder
tipping stringy brown curls
and olive skin
she asks me
and how are you?
I am shifting, fine, raising hands
and we are off conversing
the three of us
jennifer, art and it's not long before your friend disappears
we are rapping casual
are you too made up for me?
thin red, a pale red runs your lips, over their edges, but it actually looks good
eyelashes curled vertical
your body is hot, tightly constrained. either you've got a complex
or you know how to use it
and man are you confident
or you don't feel threatened.
one of those conversations where we aren't formally introduced or nice to meet you until someone else interjects and we realize our hands haven't met
we stop him to point out the strawberry on his shirt
you mention white wine removal, but I don't see the logic,
sighting artistic colour coordination
us artistic types
you're nadia
he sez like the spy, bullwinkle, and you are lost
he leaves, so does osa
and I am found you keep me from sustained goodbyes
I know we've been talking for a while when we lean against a dresser, exchanged business cards
you're an artsy mama at aol
and I'm cyborgasmic
I see your card, ask where you're from
texas, you mean my name
is palastinian
a texas palastinian, that's original
you reach up to attempt adjusting my stray eyebrow hair
you like to take long baths, or sitting showers
15 shampoos, loofas, the works.
we discuss jennifer's beau
her fiance after three months
is it more than a healing?
you've caught a bad vibe
haven't yet met him, know what you'll say when asked
we were both underwhelmed
I am trying to justify him beyond our impression,
validate jennifer's judgement
but we both have feminine intuition
you spied a limo and wonder if he brought it, redeeming
I wonder if intuition is swayed by a cool car
but he's unemployed and aconsiderate so I doubt it
you're seriously contemplating the fair flowered wreath work on the far wall
ask jennifer jokingly about a payment plan
and lo and behold
it's possible to defer your 1,800 teacher tribute
seated now
you can't believe my single extended fingernail is not for drugs
we've transited three positions together
I thought you had me figured out.
I am asked to leave
we are going to eat and drink
old buddy visions versus continued contact with this seated prospect
but I'm not yet ready to ask for a ride.
stall, invite, she's got too much work to contemplate freedom
but she'll think about it
while I go to the bathroom
out in the street
saying goodbye to jennifer
she says nadia is one she plans to keep
meanwhile mark's johnnie was in vietnam
he could light a joint with a single match in the rain
watching the forty cronies spark a doob, dude
nadia's planning her payment, securing the painting
I'm more inclined to wait for her
we cross the street together
she strides to the group and takes the proferred pot
I want to see if they are eyeing her breasts
a toke, a joke
mark is a master showman
mentions that kesey recommends dropping acid on bosnia
three man riff on that
I am stunned stoned silence
just not much for me to add
a complete ecology
I would derail
conscious of my sobriety
my allegiances
my distaste for overbearing old twats who think they're profoundly funny
except mark,
she suspects him italian
palestinian looks
but he's greek honey,
and he is really funny
like those triangle business cards he's handing out
or his response to her tale
of birth on janis's birthday
living on her street
going to her school
is better than some plays he's recently sat through.
another stoned segue
she has to split
the momentum is for dinner
I am alarmed
between lingering here, half moon bay grub and bub
and imposing for a ride
elect to halt her flee with a request,
and no worries about the fellas
a babe like that is a higher pursuit
encouraged me to take her to the limit.
we are wending the winding highway one
in a friends borrowed car without a radio
stick shift, so I am no chauffer assistance
the window is dirty, you are easily stoned
it is night, and you don't recognize everything
no worries, say I, we've got time
to hear about your family
alcoholic mother
estranged genius sister constantly stoned
you are in therapy over her
jennifer offers you that connection you miss sorely sisterhood
I hate sitting side by side the road ahead
with someone I'm connecting with
eye contact is sporatic, if that.
impression query
upon sighting me bohemian relaxed but intelligent
you heard my voice told you so, not the words
you have a cellphone, a computer, take chicago conference excursions
all this adds up to a twenty seven year old family supported
like any true arab
compensation for all the shit you had to put up with
miss capricorn burdened
you never did answer my question about the chip on your shoulder
or maybe it was your sister
your best friend is jewish
but the palestinians were there first, really, though it can't be discussed
you start to, and I start laughing
you turn down an invitation for yaya middleastern food
I should have known better
it's not your type, mesopotamian
not that felafel, babaganoush you were raised on
the best arabic food
you have to work, nothing to eat between us
we're in my neighborhood
drop me off on haight street
we cruise, conversing
it doesn't stop or slow even
picks up when we near the point I must exit to make this ride worthwhile
I don't want to lead you stress astray
consider this a good chance to commit to your work
pulled over, we're talking internet
she has much to learn
I'll check out your aptiva,
you'll cook me a texas palastinian meal.
she's still got cotton mouth,
well I have to pee, and get something to drink
hold on, I'll run to the market and pick up a mango odwalla for ya
I return for my bag and a hug, she's calling me sweetie
and write me e-mail, or I will
I'll see you
she's gone,
and I'm thrice offered kind bud
stop, turn,
kind conversation?
drift down the street with long haired bespectacled asian i.j.
from eugene
everything starts cool and gets boring
and then this 25 year old drifts down the coast
here streetside swinging
selling buds
looking for a place to crash
we drift into a teenfreak confrontation
bored rich white skate punks inspired to action by money and drugs
a bold one hurls a prescription bottle into the trash
white pills gutter rolling, he shoves someone against ben and jerry's
so petty and puny pushing each other over dime bags
they have bright futures
like me,
in this well lit pizza place
eating a complementary burnt slice
and narrating nadia.

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