June 13th, 2002

abstract butterfly

green line blues

I'm spending a few stray moments in a Kinko's in downtown Los Angeles answering work and personal e mails prior to plunging into further preparation for my hearing this afternoon. I flew to LA through El Paso last night on a free flight coupon I'd earned. One of the great arcane secrets of the Illuminated Travellers is that they make great red chili enchiladas *in an El Paso airport*. This is right up there with the beans and rice in Belize City International. On the plane, I struggled but could not get through the elaborate southernisms of Melinda Haynes "Chalktown". Her childhood Mississsippi may have been like my Arkansas, but one can love Flannery O'Connor and still not want to read her imitators. The "real" new South novel has not yet been written, though Jack Butler's "Living in Little Rock with Miss Little Rock" comes very close.

I landed late last night and went to one of the numerous LAX major chain
hotels at which priceline.com will put me up when I tell it I don't really want to pay very much money for a room but must have 3 stars. This morning, the hotel lobby was filled, as airport hotel lobbies tend to be, with Asian and European tourists. I decided to be "green" today, and to ride the "green line" and "blue line" light rail systems into downtown. These are charming rides, although definitely not an express route downtown vis a vis renting a car as I usually do.

At the elevated LAX "green line" station (located a busride away from LAX, needless to say), the concrete chairs were arranged like patio furniture. A piece of transparent plastic wall was printed with Langston Hughes' poem "What Happens to a Dream Deferred?". I thought to myself how instead of turning into a "raisin in the sun" or just exploding, as the poem suggests, most deferred dreams probably pay the one dollar and sixty cents for the ticket and transfer to downtown Los Angeles.

As I passed by dying palm trees planted in inappropriate places to provide a scenic view for the "blue line", I thought the trees said something about Los Angeles--a place I love, but a place of misplaced pathways and
dying palmtree dreams. But then the train moved from depressed apartments and faded storefronts and churches that had seen better days to a quick, lively view of the Watts Rose Garden, and I realized that things bloom in the oddest, but most wonderful places.
  • Current Music
    Ambient Music, K. In Ko.