(yellow) is Sometimes (bright)

5 Mar

And look at you coming to visit at the hospital like Enzo. Enzo. I am Enzo. Da baker. I bring this. For your father. For your father.
–What’s it like outside?
–Nice. Warm. There are flowers on the side of the road.
–Roadside flowers.
–Pull these goddamn drapes open, will you?
–They are.
–Then flip the blinds. I can see a thin layer of dust on them in this light and it’s making my nose itch.
Winter hours. In ’88. Playing Roadside Flowers at Max’s on Broadway in Baltimore. Peace. Love. Light. I remember the drummer had a jester hat on and Riverside opened. They were from Hershey, Pennsylvania. Winter Hours came out of Lyndhurst. Jersey.
–Jesus Christ your room is yellow. It’s like Alcatraz.
–Alcatraz was blue. Baby blue.
–Same thing.
–Yellow is all right.
–It’s nauseating.

–I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have said that.
–It’s all right.

–Yellow is sometimes bright. And good.
–Do you like it?
–I don’t mind. Pull the drapes open, will you?
–They are.

I call him Gavrilo because he looks like that tiny Serbian anarchist who clipped Franz Ferdinand and his wife in Sarajevo in 1914, almost single-handedly starting World War I. Gavrilo Princip. The 20th Century started and ended in Yugoslavia. Appel Quay. When he comes to visit (Gavrilo) he brings a container of hot soup with boiled chicken thighs. It’s for him. I cannot really eat anymore. But he spends hours in my room reading and he needs lunch. We are trudging through Günther Gräss’s My Century. The book describes every year from 1900 to 1999 as a story written from different perspectives. Later (he says but I don’t believe in later) we will begin Gabriel Garcia Marquéz’s One Hundred Years of Solitude.
–Jesus Christ, you must think I have all kinds of time.
He says I shouldn’t be bored and so we move through almost a book a day. And he sips his soup cold. Which sickens me because all the fat has risen to the top and has formed a thin crust through which he has to break with his spoon. At the end of the day (to-day) he packs up his bag and this time puts his hat inside the side pocket. He jams it into the cloth.
I say:
–Tell them not to wait for me…to start dinner.
And I turn to the yellow wall.


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