Sand made of DominoesWhen living on the dirty, black sand beaches that trap the Mediterranean Sea, I fell in love with a dictionary. We rented a house, 3 stories tall and 1 room wide, that had once been painted gaudy, jovial red. I suppose that the house had been constructed in the manner of many small, yardless town homes, relics of the industrial revolution, crushed and squeezed into the busy blocks of Spains once booming fishmarkets; but the other houses had long been demolished by storm, fire, or wrecking ball. This upright, peeling little relic had by some miracle survived, standing like domino- misaligned so that the chain had kept clicking by, abandoning our home to alone guard the shore, steps eternally buried in the incessantly damp volcanic sand that paved our street.
The furnishings that accompanied the house were equally lonely. Musty chairs, dark cherry dressers needing a friendly polish, a stained pastel pink dishwasher inherited from 1952. There was, of course, a dictionary- there was
clementine"What're you doing?"
"Making crop circles."
I stood at the entrance of the vegetable isle in the neighborhood Randall's, shivering. They always kept the vegetable isle at least 10 degrees lower than normality insisted, and I hadn't changed out of my sleeping clothes today, a thin tanktop and shorts. Em was arranging the oranges into patterned stacks, long curved walls of waxed tangerine perfection.
"They won't be able to see those from space, you know," I commented. "There is a roof."
She shrugged, smiled. "Put on a show for the security cameras."
I watched for a moment longer and then began to fill my plastic bag, previously dedicated towards winter squash, with oranges. Very rarely did I eat oranges .. the effort involved in peeling and pulling the skin, breaking the irregular pieces and avoiding the seeds rendered them unenjoyable to me .. but I wanted to own a piece of that grocery store sculpture. As I pulled an orange from the bottom, my section of the creation fell, and she shot