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You are here: Home / Lit / 20:11) Chris Abraham 24-AUG-94

20:11) Chris Abraham 24-AUG-94

A beautiful red-headed friend calls with a thickbassy voice.
He calls to tell me of the Shanindoahs he slept amongst in
an old stone home turned hostel. I passed him, unbeknownst to
me, while he ate pasta primavera-- I was racing down 81, 66,
and he sat there wishing it was cooler (it *was* cool) so the landlord
would light the fire.

He tells me about the landlord: "He comes across as really weird,
but that is only because he has been to the far east and has come
to term with things we don't understand-- he's okay with it all
and understands and that's why we perceive him as 'other'." I
wait. "Chris," says Mark, "this landlord, the lord of the old
stone hostel in which I ate Pasta Primavera while listening to the
trees, says he will be on holiday from November to March." I listen.
"He needs a house sitter. I thought of you-- you have always believed
a retreat would open your reducing valve much more than drugs... here
is your chance for a one-man artist colony." I wait, I listen.
"You would need a 4x4. Your diesel mercedes won't do. You would
be all alone for three months in the winter-- with a powerbook and
the old selectric II."

I drove along route 81, may 66 east, and he planned my future,
gave me a place to rest, without pay. He says I should get them
to lay me off so I can make $200 per week unemployment.

"You can live on $200 a month," he says to me over the phone and
his voice is rough and sexy.

The real question is, am I strong enough to live alone far off
in the hills in the woods, snow bound with an unhappy diesel
coming back to a lost job, most likely.

I lie in a bed, covered with gauze. Forms in white circle me,
I sit up but remain quiet. I can hear a deep warm rough-hewn
voice and it is the doctor. He wants to give me better vision,
he wants to return my touch, he wants to pump hot blood into my
chest, he wants to broaden my chest and strengthen my arms and
give me a happy pet dogs at the end of a leash.

I say, "How much with this cost me?"

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