Friday, August 27, 2010


27 August 2010. Late in the night. People are good. Alexi from El Salvador stops his janitorial cart to help, no jump cable--but kindhearted Altagracia (also with cart) has a portable charger, so we walk together down to Durant, where's she's parked off campus for economy's sake--listening to her life story--and head back to the Boalt lot, where my ancient Honda has died yet again. But her starter won't work--this time the battery is truly gone--and I wait in the dark for the truck from AAA--it's Gustavo, from Matzatlan, 23 years old and very heads up. His English almost unaccented, and he knows cars. "Me gustan los coches." At midnight, new battery in place, I'm on the road...

Congo Square. An image from New Orleans. And today the date of Katrina, five years back. Song from that odd-ball Chuck E. Weiss--and the photo of two men, sitting opposite at a small table somewhere in the LA basin. Yahya's response last night--to my question, "What are layers?" (We've just sung Down in the Valley.) He quotes Psalms--"I walk through the valley of the shadow of death...," adding, "It makes me think of an alley..."

Songs and Places. "If I get to heaven before you do, I'll cut a hole and pull you through..."

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