I love the taste of grilled salmon, accompanied by two servings of steamed vegetables. The solid colors, if nothing else, fully recommend the dish. I like things to be unmixed and filled with solids. But no rule or fondness is absolute. I like both pinpoint oxfords and Hawaiian shirts.
The irregular hours which accompany hard work propel me on ethereal daydream journeys when the days dissolve past journey into dream. There's a Zero bar quality to things--not chocolate, yet nougat, not cold, yet polar. A soft solidity of goal and intention. The word moving past flesh into spirit and the mental equivalent of gushing adrenaline.
The phrase "Dublin style", referring to corn syrup Dr. Pepper, enchants me, though I don't like Dr. Pepper. It's that soda-fountain ideal--a perfect drink. When I was 7 years old, my allowance was 25 cents. The drug store soda fountain huge chocolate milkshake cost 25 cents. In this world of dreamscape in which I grew older, we collected bottles from odd places for spare change, watched bats flit overhead on cool Summer nights, and watched a huge Lord Gawd woodpecker, erroneously believed to be extinct, sit on the little porcelain garden bench, judging both the quick and the dead. I have never seen anyone admit that the Lord God woodpecker lived in Gurdon, Arkansas, although they now have found it once again, in a swamp in eastern Arkansas. In Arkansas, what once seemed lost is often found, and let's hope that the blind someday all see.
I remember chocolate soft drinks, giant luna moths in the baseball field lights, floating impossibly overhead while being watched during hotdog-enriched meals,and dozens upon dozens of lightning bugs, illuminating truth like a thousand tiny illustrated triptyches. The saints all are bathed in gold halo, in my imagination, where milk flowed into cereal bowls, and honey slathered on fresh-baked bread, while seedless melons from the Watermelon Capital of the World graced tables like the dessert of the First Supper.
I hit two Little League home runs one year, each floating barely over the fence--perhaps the closest thing to a rite of passage for me, and yet, in some ways, a ball crossing a fence. I remember being pelted with gravel by two kids until I cried. I remember catching bream from a fishing dock, and hiking old wagon trails from the 19th Century. I lived a bottle-rocket, right field, banana-seat-bicycle, Marco Polo kind of childhood, and I don't
mind the good memories. I'm grateful for them.