344 East 134th Street Apt 6c

Bronx, New York 10454


July 26, 2001


Dear A.


I know very little about the flight strategies of birds. For example, how do birds decide whether to ignore topographic features or follow them?


I was sitting in the reference room at the Public Library when I felt a hand on my shoulder.


"Sorry I’m late," the trickster of the crossroads said. "There was a fire in the subway and I couldn’t find a taxi." He took a handkerchief from his trouser pocket and, pointing to a dust mark on the front of my blouse, wiped away the imprint left by the books that I had carried from the shelf to the table. "Late for what?" I asked.


"Confirming the reasons for turning down the engineer," he said, and smiled.


I asked him if he was the man who gave my family money when my father was arrested. "I know him, but I am not he," the trickster replied. The air filled with the smell of Eucalyptus. Esu-Elegbara felt the sea breeze on the shores of Senegal. A door opened in the dark. Time lay across the floor like shadows of a prison’s bars.


Esu-Elegbara said that he would now return to the conference on Information and Mapping, where a meeting on more effective border patrolling was underway. As he moved toward the door I noticed that one of his legs was slightly shorter than the other, causing him to walk with a limp.