Crystal Ball

21 Oct

—Show me again, she says.
—I can’t now. I’m driving. Don’t be silly.
—When you are finished?
—Ok. But that’s not for a while.
I turn quickly to see what she’s doing. The road bends. And then leans to the left, cutting through the granite geography. She’s buried in between two gargantuan pillows. She is singing quietly to herself.
—Can you breathe in there?
The road bends again. We follow. The car moans a little. I hear myself answering something out loud.
—What?
—Nothing. I may need to take her in, I say.
—To be fixed? Is it broken?
—No, don’t worry. Can you sleep?
She slams down her head onto the thick pillow.
—Don’t forget to show me the scar…
—When we stop.
—Honk, honk.
—It wasn’t a goose, I say. It was a tall swan done pinched me.
She laughs at the construction of that and says: —What’s that word I like?
—Which one?
—The funny one. That’s long.
—Bamboozled.
She laughs hard. And then:
—Honk, hooooonk!
She makes a Dickie Bird with her hand—a fleshy beak that opens and closes in soft bites. Then she stops for a moment. Scrutinizes her hangnail. Bites down on it and I hear a sharp snap. She looks out at the formations of the clouds. Then down into the bowl of a valley, at the minuscule homes with thin lines of smoke drawn up from their stacks.
On the way back, last year, I turned toward the guardrail, off the road, coming down the mountain. Fast. Did you know…
—Turn it up please.
—You like this one?
—Yes. Turn it up please.
—Can you sleep?
She slams down her head. I turn the knob.
—What’s the name?
—Crystal Ball.
—No, the name of the man who sings it.
—It’s Keane.
—What?
—Keane. It’s a group.
She mouths the lyrics.
—After this can you play the one about the Frog Prince?
—If you sleep.
She laughs: —Bam-boozled!
—Just sleep, for God’s sakes. Wiggleworm!
—Noooooo…
—We still have a long way to go.
—How much?
—A loooong way. Hours.
—Free?
—Not that long. Two.
She holds up two fingers to herself. Then flips her hand around to show me. I look at her through the rearview. She sees me and smiles and says:
—Peace!

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6 Responses to “Crystal Ball”

  1. Slyboots 21/10/2008 at 10:28 AM #

    Little girls appear to love Keane. My boss’s daughters are absolutely in love with Keane. They sing all the songs, and put on little flirty dances. And then jump on the couch. All to Keane. Must be something in the water.

  2. Stef 21/10/2008 at 12:14 PM #

    I like this one.

  3. (S)wine 22/10/2008 at 9:40 AM #

    Thanks, Stef. Sly, that is quite strange. I guess that makes me a little girl. Oh well, I’ve been called worse.

  4. Slyboots 22/10/2008 at 10:29 AM #

    No, you are just a good daddy. Like my boss- allowing the little girls to enjoy what they enjoy. Unless you want to be a little girl- far be it from me to deny a man his dream.

  5. momentofchoice 22/10/2008 at 9:51 PM #

    I should go for car rides more often.

  6. momentofchoice 22/10/2008 at 9:51 PM #

    and i am totally in love with my monster avatar.

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