Monday, 12 September 2011

The First Bus


Sixteen years old and on my way to study for sophistication out on the coast. I boarded the bus at the station. Tired already, my alarm was set for dark o'clock, eyelids heavy with mascara and shadow, protected by a veil of patchouli oil, as the top deck squelched full of fry-up vapour jackets, wet dog denim, and ashtray perms. I figured the study for sophistication would have some rough to smooth, and travelled cavalier in my quest for visual delight when psychiatric nursing was the destiny of most art students. We drove east with bar room volume until one morning I heard silence coming, the fizz, whine, and creak of voices drowning. He was climbing the stairs. Silence from the lower deck audible. Mighty men, fear in their glance, clenched jaws, lacquered women swallowed their breath, everyone found their fingernails interesting. My admiration was thunderous, and by the end of the journey I'd made an idol of a man who could bring peace to the number eleven with a frock coat and hairstyle.



2011



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