Invisible

byNigel Debonnaire©

Chicago Loop Summer:
frantic processions of sweating corporate monks
strain at corners of red,
leaking across in anticipation of green
when traffic is sparse.
A bright blue sky flecked
with tufts of cotton
blows through the asphalt corridors,
swirling trash and threatening hairstyles.

Gulls hang in the breeze,
search for discarded gourmet fragments,
landing and pecking.

Sitting by the Lions of Michigan Avenue,
watching, dreaming,
emptying the heaviness of memories,
I see what no one else sees:
a woman,
a white haired woman,
a white haired woman with
beanbag breasts and hips,
lightly toasted and wrinkled,
comfortably passing
unclad and barefoot.

I cross the street against the light
to follow her.

Out of pace with the flow,
reflected in plate glass windows,
treading softly on the hard pavement.
Jostled occasionally, impersonally,
people ducking around her left and right,
unaware.
Her naked skin touched unfeeling.

She walks unperturbed,
the soles of her feet unstained
by the sticky sidewalk
that clings to my shoes.

My feet follow hers,
my eyes drawn by the dialogue
of sagging dimpled buttocks,
as I dance avoidance
in the crowded sidewalks.

She boards a bus unchallenged,
lightly taking the only open seat,
ignored by the other passengers
lost in newspapers and earphones.
I fumble out my card,
feed it to the reader
that spits it out indignantly;
walk back to stand in the circle,
holding a strap
and bending around every corner.

Promontory Point is battered
by windy waves and the
stink of Indiana Lakefront plants.
Gulls hang in the breeze,
search for discarded gourmet fragments,
landing and pecking.
Leaping skyward in indignation
when people come to close.

She makes her circular walk
past students on blankets,
dogs pissing and shitting,
kites jumping above on lines
and sails parading in the East
on Lake Michigan.
Still unseen, still unnoticed,
a middle aged woman
unclad, all brown,
her low riding nipples
perking occasionally in the breeze,
her hair flailing wildly,
her feet flexing lightly
as she walks.

Around and through the Lakefront Parks
then down Garfield Avenue,
past homeless and toddlers
who ignore her,
over cracked sidewalks of broken glass,
grit and gravel,
cigarette butts and anonymous spume,
past mathematicians and theologians,
nannies and librarians,
storefronts and row houses,
churches and universities.

She walks unclad,
unconcerned,
her hair trailing in the breeze,
her beanbag hips switching back and forth,
her feet clean and perfect.

At the L station,
leaping nimbly over the turnstiles,
surprising agility,
landing lightly on her feet,
her clean pure feet
looking freshly scrubbed.

Orange Line,
transfer,
Red Line,
Wrigleyville.

I take my seat in the right field bleachers
to watch the spring pageant,
bratwurst in one hand, beer in the other.
Repast finished, a home run burrows into my hands,
scorching, burning,
I throw it back and watch the unreal:
She walks the outfield grass during the game
unseen,
watching the game with passing fancy,
passing the meandering outfielders,
the ball flying by indifferently,
kicking up the infield dust,
leaving no footprints
despite her piggy toes lascivious embrace
of light brown dust and lush green grass.

Lithely she jumps the fence,
watching me,
noticing I notice her,
serenely gliding up the stairs
her breasts jiggling with every step.
Crow’s feet, thin lips, thin nose,
white eyebrows wisping gently,
sagging brown skin.

She stands before me nose to nose,
bending over the seat in front of me
and I am lost in her eyes,
blue with grey flecks;
I am trapped in
Serenity.

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