THE BLOG
05/25/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated Nov 17, 2011

They're Sleeping

I got out of bed carefully in the dark. In the bed a splayed-out-to-all-the-edges woman was sleeping, with a second smaller person sleeping inside her.

I walk northwest through the darkness to a window that was bright turquoise. I put the pan of water on the stove and watched the blue flame. A cardinal sang in the backyard, in that broad style of Spring. I took a disc from the big book of music and plopped it in the blaster at the top of the refrigerator. I wanted to listen to Thelonius Monk at dawn, the god in the pork-pie hat. There were three cardinals in the same tree now, with vast blue background sliding through different shades of bright. The cardinals were angry males, with their three family properties entangled in that tree. Thelonius began to play as if every possible border problem should double us over in laughter.

It was robin's egg blue now, a touch of almost green in it, the sky was moving over the working class neighborhood where I wait for our baby, listening to that darkness on the other end of the apartment. I placed the Irish tea in the cup and sensed the number 25 nearby, glowing from the calendar on the wall. The number has a color. The black ink in the two numerals hung out a picture on the air before me. The number 25 was the blue of stained-glass windows, that bombed out church I saw in Berlin with the blue holy glass still standing. Then I turned away from the calendar, because I realized that every number of the month had a color, and that's too much.

I look back into the dark end of the apartment again, where the mother-and-child have their collaboration going on, with their eyes closed I'm thinking, like they're praying. They are sprawled in space like at the top of a weightless flight or a ten thousand year old drifting boat. Suddenly, this miracle that was happening has so much magisterial authority -

I have my tea and jazz at the edge of it, counting the numbers of my fragile habits. The sun rises over the sparkling roofs. I turn to look out the window again. I knew it. There it is. There is a towering mountain over Brooklyn. So all the tsunamis and earthquakes come to this. There it is. A blue mountain out of nowhere, swallowing the explosions of the power-mad neighborhoods, swatting the bulldozers that imitate insects and ancient reptiles. A great reclaiming mountain, hundreds of millions of years old, waiting there all over the sky.... waiting for the city that never sleeps to wake up.