It is 1992. There is an odd glow in the distance that changes colors in this memory. The air is cold even though it surely wasn’t , again some literal placemarker of the past in some electro-chemical confetti and the way it re-assembling (flawed) into memory, the way of old television sets of a time never to be seen again, of the color off and knobs for it, of horizontal , of vertical, of static and fuzz and fade.
This lawn is surely from a series of photographs that now sit in a bag behind old clothes in storage as much as this moment or all the years of these steps and spaces now forever undead with all the oblique great distances and closeness that memory entails. The cold seems more acute now and there a santa ana wind that was not there.
I did not know what was coming, those words from my father’s mouth in that water bed now forever a country and lone island at once. The television with the brown cable box above it will glow forever like
some ember more than integer in front of this long discarded bed.
The door and the hall lead past a living room now a carpet on nothing, another television I took soon after this world and place to San Francisco to later die in Grad School at Cal Arts painted, damaged, but with the grace of someone who has lived a long life and wears the years , a beauty we cannot possibly touch nor fully understand like my luminous souled grandmother we will both bury and celebrate in a few days from tonight. Her grace nearing 100 we cannot touch, only celebrate even as we mourn.
My father says now “It is on” as he did then. His words are clear even now as the back wall undulates and the window changes shape behind that tv in this forever and gone room at is forms and people and place . The L.A riots have begun. The distant glow was the city burning/ is the city burning. In south central unbeknownst to this space of memory my grandmother can see flames down the street. The images of unrest, of police brutality, of corruption and anger, they are a sort of oatmeal of motion on the tv now as I turn back in this past and walls vanish, , my mother turns and looks at me , her eyes now only of photographs and recall , my father soon will turn up the volume on that tv in this room now unfinished and vivid, breaking a bit in recall as time goes on. The bed undulates and the lamp light grows clear now in this place drawn from a million pieces , surely one of a thousand places like this to walk imperfectly as past. i will come here vividly and incompletely for the rest of my life in sleep.