344 East 134th Street Apt 6c

Bronx, New York 10454

 

July 25, 2001

 

Dear A,

 

I am at a juncture, an intersection. It’s a curious location. Perhaps I’ll move to another city.

 

Earlier today I walked into a café on Broadway and ordered a sandwich. A child at the next table demanded in a loud voice

"I want yellow ice-cream."

 

"It doesn’t come in yellow. Would you like banana?" his mother inquired.

"No, I want yellow," insisted the child, tipping the sugar over onto its side.

"Calm down," the child’s father said, righting the sugar.

"Daddy, I want yellow."

"It doesn’t come in yellow."

"I want Andrews’ then," he said.

 

Without hesitation the child lurched forward and snatched his friend’s cone. Stunned by the unexpected theft, the boy began to cry. Coolly, the father licked his index finger and gathered up spilled chocolate particles that lay scattered on the tabletop. They clung to his skin, as if to a magnet. Then he put the finger close to his son’s face and asked him if he knew what happened to people that took things from others. The child replied that he didn’t know. "They lose all sense of direction, and walk in circles until they die from exhaustion."

 

 

 

Agnes