by A. Pseudonym

A man walks in solitude, late at night. He has been moved by a beautiful film. The streets are quiet and the air is warm. A small smile holds his face in repose. 

He turns a corner. Up the way a bar has let out for the night. A group of drinkers stands in a tumble on the sidewalk, yelling cheerfully. His way lies through them.

One screams a joke. “Sorry, can't come through here, didn't ya know? Sidewalk's closed!”

The joker gets nothing. The man keeps walking, and does not smile. The drunk whispers stupidly to his friends, feigning regret: “Oh-oh; guess this one's not in the mood!”

On the other side of them, the walker having passed that interruption feels it spread into the world, small drop become blot. He achieves distance with every step, and their happy voices fade. Yet the silence stays broken.

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A woman runs on a favored road, where every tree is known to her. Her pace is even and her mind is clear like the light on this day. She seems at rest in motion.

Behind her a car turns the curve, speeding. It has no muffler. In periphery she sees it brown, rusted, low-slung. To be safe she tacks left into the sideditch.

When it passes she feels the air beside her ear disturbed. In front of her a glass bottle strikes a small oak. The car is already gone. She can still hear its engines gunning. Her jaw goes stiff. 

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Packs of children at the museum.

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Refrigerators abandoned in the grass.

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Barbarians at the gate.

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The ignorant indignant given power.

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And the interrupted, intent to restore what was marred. 

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In Vienna, a vision dismissed by the vulgar. The artist moves away, makes vows. He will not be distracted. And the insistence of the world will not move him. He will spread peace like wet blood on a sheet. 

He will make things come true.

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Plastic litter for old stone ruins. Ruin upon ruin.