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Prismatica

Prismatica

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Published by Joe Bonomo
Quarter After Eight (V17 2011) in "The Future of Experimental Writing."
Quarter After Eight (V17 2011) in "The Future of Experimental Writing."

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Published by: Joe Bonomo on Mar 27, 2011
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04/03/2011

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31Quarter Ater Eight
Prismatica 
Joe Bonomo
I’m standing near the swing set during recess at SaintAndrew Te Apostle School. N. is on the swings. Shepumps her legs and grips the chain and leans back in thewind and her hair streams and she swings upward andher plaid skirt lits and I see her sky-blue underwear. Shesqueals.I’m not standing near the swing set during recess at SaintAndrew Te Apostle School. N. may be on the swings. Shelikely pumps her legs and grips the chain and leans back inthe wind and her hair streams and she swings upward andI imagine that her plaid skirt lits and I see her sky-blueunderwear. In my head she squeals.Aerial view o a blacktop playground in suburbanWashington DC. Children scatter and join, shriek andjaw, huddle and separate. Te politics o groups. Girls ona swing. A boy by a agpole.Use N.’s ull name already. Employing an initial or a rstname is a quaint aectation, a sel-conscious throwback to another century. Not contemporary. Who are you,Charles Lamb?Apple Computer is incorporated. Gary Gilmore is executedby ring squad in Utah. Roots. EMI drops the Sex Pistols.Jimmy Carter succeeds Gerald Ford. Focus on the Family is ounded. I’m standing near the swing set during recessat Saint Andrew Te Apostle School. Fleetwood Mac’s
Rumours 
is released. Te Guatemala City air disaster kills28 people. “Son o Sam” is captured. Shakira is born.
 
32 Quarter Ater Eight
“I have more memories than i I were a thousand years old,” Charles BaudelaireI wonder what currency there is in essaying a ragment. I’m standing near theswing set during recess at Saint Andrew Te Apostle School.“Recess is a general term or a period o time in which a group o people istemporarily dismissed rom its duties. In parliamentary procedure, a recessis initiated by a motion to recess. It was invented by Bronson Alcott, whowanted his students to have active physical play and time to talk. [citationneeded],” WikipediaI don’t remember why I ended up by the swing set. Probably I drited away rom the jungle gym where A. was testing how long a cord o Starburst-thickened spit could hang rom the bars. I was sickened. I was drawn to thegirls moving in the air.“Distance has the same eect on the mind as on the eye,” Samuel JohnsonPossibilities: a story told by someone else; a scene rom an ater-school movie;a dream; a antasy; a picture in a book; a Highlights comic made lewd by my imagination; a glimpse on another day at a dierent playground.Citation needed.It would be interesting to write a history o the swing set, that man-madeharness. Research: where was the rst one built? What was the prototype?What were the dangers? Were there early deaths? Was the swing set born o the imagination, o man’s sad wish to y, to test limits? Someone somewhereknew that kids would love a swing set. Te thrill in the tiny chest every time,without ail.“What a delightul thing this perspective is!” Paolo UccelloI had a crush on N. I could go there. She was a Latina. We knew that thenbut didn’t know what that meant. She was dark and pretty and gangly in anapproachable way. She was skinny and riendly and had a bright white smile.She was always laughing, and she looked at me not through me.
 
33Quarter Ater Eight
Several years later one o my older brothers took me to his riend’s amily’sgarden-apartment up on Georgia Avenue. Tere was a pool I could swim in.Girls in bathing suits. N.’s amily lived there.Or: the history o garden apartments (“developed in the early 20th century”),o organized domestic dramas, communal privacies, mufed noise, glimpses.See what happened — right now.Near the swing set during recess. N. on the swings. She swung and her plaidskirt lited and I saw her sky-blue underwear. She squealed.Mon Sep 20 11:01:23 2010 via webJoe Bonomo is remembering N. on the swing set and that thing that happened.4 hours ago clearst&ing nr d swing set durin recess @ st andrew d apostle. N. s on d swings.she pumps her lgz n grips d chain n leans bac n d wind n her hair streams nshe swings upward n her plaid skirt lits +I C her sky-blue undies.Broadcast this. Will it be made to matter.Or: the history o grade school recess. A history o the theatre, really. O actors and actresses hoping or verisimilitude. O roles and costumes. You’vegot 45 minutes on the stage: comedy, tragedy, and slapstick. Bad makeup.Stage right, sweat, and blown lines.“I carry my landscapes around with me,” Joan MitchellAnaïs Nin, Groucho Marx, Joan Craword, Elvis Presley, Roberto Rossellini,Vladimir Nabokov, Robert Lowell, and Charlie Chaplin died. Kanye West,John Mayer, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Randy Moss, Ludacris, Fiona Apple, Liv yler and Donald rump, Jr. were born. What do I know? I am essaying an up-skirt rom decades ago. Patricia Hampl:“We only store in memory images o value.”See “Lime Green,” Quarterly West, N46, 1998. 

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