augury doggerel

Sunday, January 12, 2003


While the woman and the kid were tormenting horses today, I took the tram downtown for a look around on a slushy superzero afternoon.

First too many policemen walking and looking. Then Red Cross rescue dogs on leashes. Hmm. But then amplified music and people with red paper hearts stuck to their coats, teenagers with money cans walking around asking everyone without a heart to contribute and get a heart. I was there, by chance, on the day of the annual national telethon for children�s hospitals, and I had come upon the local portion of the show. Television cameras and spotlights scanned the crowd. If we had a television at home, I might have caught myself standing in slush on national TV.

(Why did the kid come in just now, hug me, and slip out? Something sneaky is going on.)

The action was in the town square on a temporary stage next to the statue of Neptune, our naked local god. A local girl in a big fluffy coat sang slick cover pop to recorded music. An Elvis impersonator had a convincing leather suit. Four young guys (I am too ancient to name them) who seemed to be playing their own songs pleased the girls near the stage. Down at the canal, almost out of speaker range, in a different patch of slush, a navy band played a steady �Hold That Tiger� or whatever it�s called.

When I got home, I stuck my heart to the piano, where the kid is now practicing under the woman�s guidance. They�re pretty good, too.


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