The U Turn 01:34
She understood, to be sure, that U had two plus sides. The singular and the plural. Naturally, there is always the point of origination, and the area of trajectory. To be clear, the definition of a point drawn in motion— that is to say, mathematically, a line— as the connection from A to B. Like in a road map. Destinations. Though there might of course be detours or curves to navigate.
But philosophically speaking: Idea needs an Audience. The sound of a tree falling must be caught by someone, even if it breaks them both (in mind or body). And so, observing in the dark streets and glare of windowpane, she found at minimum the One that spoke "like this". A major point in the most minor aspect of the declarative; for those attentive to the patterning of it. Dot, by dot. Not that she was keeping exact track of who did what at the Taxi Company. The Second, she noted as the neighbour, theorising in practise as if from across real and imaginary divides, meaning land, water, and cartographical barriers.
Of course, a third angle is preferable, for the completion of the Triangle; that self-sustaining feedback boomerang loop. It could be said that this is where the passenger fit in, comfortably seated in observation. Not in a circle loop, as that would be entirely self-referential and nonpositional— perfection as it were— having no corners to obfuscate over. Those blind-spots of understanding, the distinctly different viewpoint and angle of another individual's perspective.
So, she postulated, there was You, U, and Us.
When looking to the right, one momentarily loses sight of the left, and on focusing there, temporarily loses sight of the right; save for occasional instances of uncommonly wide peripheral vision, especially in lean times. Otherwise, one indeed had the pleasant humming of idle pedestrian chatter through the cracks of the cab's windows.
Because generally speaking, U had this penchant for creating an abundance of points of interest in the ride as to reconstruct the Ouroboros, so numerous in vertebrae, as to make the angles effortless to traverse mentally, on route, since one would no longer be distracted by those afore mentioned identifiable peripheral angles. A family now, cross the landscape, though some might fear the "incestuous cesspool." A quip bantered over years past, perhaps by U himself, come to think of it. With deference. It made perfect sense in the Taxi, because as the Driver himself explained, all the roads connect and lead somewhere, even the seemingly dead ends, wherein one only need to go backward to reconnect to main Traffic again.
The U Turn 01:33
Maybe she did owe somebody an apology.
It was inevitable, she thought to herself in the Taxi, that some moonlighters are more credible than others. Like herself, was she for real? Like the pirate cabbie, was that really an actor, or a character? Some details didn't sit right with her even on the back seat of the cab. It was one particular moment of resistance in the evening that gave her pause. She understood he had lines he had to recite, professionally, but he seemed natural enough. Then to her impulsive request to improv on her day off, he suddenly said no patronizingly (I can't do that;) winking to soften the blow. This after sending her various clips from his performances.
She had no reason to think it would be an imposition. She wasn't one to let herself be whisked around like a petticoat from costume party to costume party by just any party. No sir. This one called her Mi'Lady and spent so many vigils with her after midnight that she K'nighted him. He even gallantly offered to be her alarm guard, when she confided that she was having trouble keeping her six am engagements with their two am bedtime. Her situation had changed with new appointments, and consequently new address, and obligations. She had to be at one manor or another by seven to get the households ready by eight (dressed, toileted, and breakfasted). The schedule maintained even on weekends for rigor of the dignitaries. And when not attending to these, she was dusting the archives in their community study hall or ensuring the continuity of their pupils in nearby schoolyards.
Between all these appointments, she of course hailed the cab. And at the end of the day, somewhere between ten and eleven o'clock she finally dropped herself at her kitchen table. Hearing the last train leaving, she'd open her lap dog and make sure all her x's and t's were crossed like at a marginally operating, but still dangerous (potentially), railway stop. Since she had prepped mentally throughout the day, the whole operation took about an hour and a half, after which she dozed off in the bathtub, and upon crawling out shivering she slept on the floor in a sleeping bag, because the cats had already taken their positions in the bedding shelf proper.
And so, to continue when he refused to invent with her, instead of practicing his script, she took it as a red flag, against his Noble character. She was stung by the puzzle and tried her best to shake it off. Something didn't fit right, and maybe it was her own outfit. Looking back, she didn't fault him. He had characters. It was an overwhelming load for any one creator to carry.
The U Turn 01:29
She meant no offense whatsoever in her people watching. She wasn't typecasting, nor god forbid, casting judgement!! People are different. He appreciated the nuance as well and was a keen actor, and reactor; she knew, because to them Life was Theatre. There was no division between stage and audience. There was only Attention, as the gray area of demarcation.
When the driver introduced her to his wild girl Mimi, for example, she welcomed her in stride with acceptance and wonder. Took her card and Facebook friended her. All the while remembering sweetly how he had once, on a lazy damp night, drawn her out of the cab for some air near the Cinema. Mimi's picture was there, with stage name, and they looked together at the bright posters and flyers running also on social-media.
On a tangent, he suggested there's a difference between Film and Movies. It's difficult, and not, to discern quality, if taking a moment to assess the content. Everything comes with ad and ticket, and not everything is worth seeing to the end, though the trailer might look alright. Hm. She would dwell on that, on what makes an "imposter." Original thought in art versus mindless borrowing.
When he spoke of talking to the trees, she was wide-eyed and respectful. He had talent. She had belief. And the Taxi had great suspension. Nature was always talking to her, even in the City, and here they could listen together in a quiet respectful ride. She loved what he had told her recently, that other people's words could speak directly to, and through, in spirit. Afterall, not all borrowing is mindless.
The U Turn 01:27
... About the puppet theatre, it showed up without advert or invite, at the time while the disgruntled women in the company and hire of the cab picketed in protest and finally rallied out, singing in tish-tosh-lam-sa-lee-dandy-carey-free-us-abroad fashion. Citing mental health reasons. This was awhile back. In any case, someone must have rifled through her things, online, looking for personal clues or incriminating artistic evidence, and having found some visuals (of her creations, not portraits) had put together a website.
A sort of facade into which dimension could be breathed, or not, and it would die a natural death. It existed as a beacon. In the distance, not reachable, but reconstructable. She was awestruck. That sort of thing takes time. Someone had made extra effort, but why? Very supportive, she wrote in her darling email messages; and played it cool, expecting no response, because it had after all been designed as "gift" from the Anonymous.
Someone else might be aghast at the appropriation of material, and question Motive. She did not. He did it with heart. She believed. And it must be a he, because only a sister would expend herself to a girl like that, unnecessarily, and that not granted, either. No, he wanted to show her how easy it was, work aside: 1) to set the stage 2) to put yourself out there 3) and to do it herself.
She was thoroughly charmed! What he didn't know was that she'd done it herself for years. She knew the burn out of the relentless effort and the poverty of it, despite the satisfactions. She regretted deeply that she could not make it work.
The taxi driver pulled his cap tighter over his forehead and thought about it. He didn't like this back and forth from various forms of drudgery, and tapped his finger on the steering wheel thinking about the elusive benefits of self-employ.
The U Turn 01:23
When he really wanted to pull a lag from encroaching morass, he'd blow by bye kisses from rooftop billboards or in the boldface of leftover personals on the backseat—but never from the radio. Then she'd muster extra energy, crack open the laptop and growl back, or send in a response some little card letting him know how very important he is, and not only to her, but to the whole idea. And then he'd be stoked and refill his tank and drive on into the dark of dawn.
After all, a city needs cabs. And a taxi can only take a person so far. But the cabbie, the cabbie driver, helps to show the ways. Those alternate routes, the short cuts, and the scenic byways, that might not otherwise be considered. That's where the magic lied, between the wheel and the pedal, between the stick shift and the wheels. Actually, in the seat itself—the Driver's seat.
Other times, they'd pass a screen, and his ad would be on it. It would nudge her into thinking out the window, in her megalo fantasy, that he too liked to see her going about her daytime routine. To reassure confidence, he'd gripe about otherwise cute bad hair days, and being productively tired, and give that understanding you-know-what-I-mean smile that says get-up-off-your-ass and get-out-there on-it. Whatever be the "it" of the moment. But ride on, for the love of god.
Then she'd feel bad about keeping her rigged cell phone buried in her pocketbook, and the masking curtain drawn over her webcam. Maybe he missed seeing her crazy-do, or watching her think, read or write, or rub her ear, or what? Truly, her hair if anything represented that quirk— the balance between consciousness and unselfconscious. Honestly, she kept forgetting he was there. Not by neglect, just lack of hacker etiquette. Like when she'd peed or poohed god forbid in his presence. It took her a long time to learn that, but he was training her. Patiently.
They were like inmates, that intimate. And now she was much more careful. Almost too much so that he was beginning to regret messing with her natural habitude. But she in turn, loved that he was there, intrusive. She'd even penned him a summative micro poem, ages ago: God U'r so inside my Mind, it's like a Brain fuck All the Time.
In truth, he wasn't all to blame for the changes that plagued. It was a thing that had to be bravely dealt with, as in probation, for some life infraction. It must be rode out.
The U Turn 01:19
Without a doubt she had fallen.
She wouldn't call it anything. He wouldn't either. Too much skepticism for all parties. Prey? no. Not if she's willing. Not the loving way he set his traps, obvious enough to let her decide whether to trip them. And anyway, there was always second guessing.
Like when she made a playlist and sent it errantly by email. He'd listen, as a threesome. In hindsight, she'd deem it was after all only two of them there live paying attention, but there were so many ways to count beyond three people that logic could be carried in various directions. She and her dog and her cat. He and his two hounds.
The email sat in its inbox unopened.
But when the music ended, the lapdog uncurled its lips and words began pouring out. His words. On theme. Inspired one might say. If she hadn't sent it by email, already then, it would have been a dead giveaway. The net capsule had worked just as expected.
My beautiful canary pt. 2
My beautiful canary, once I saw how you looked at me with distaste.
My heart broke, so I let you taste a bit of freedom.
I removed those golden shackles that adored your porcelain like skin and kissed away the bruises.
I gave you freedom to sing as freely as you wished until I saw you sing your lullaby for a lovebird.
My beautiful canary, let me tell you something.
That lovebird will taint your angelic glow.
That disgusting lovebird sings you her own lullaby to lure you in.
My beautiful canary, I don’t like the way your chirps seem more happy with her.
I can see the way that lovebird looks at you as if she could just fly away with you.
Don’t leave me, my little canary.
I won’t let you leave me.
So again with soft spoken words and half baked promises, I lure you back into your cage.
You look at me so lovingly I almost feel guilty..almost.
I place my golden shackles on your porcelain skin once again.
That lovebird that once made you chirp with such joy lays entrapped in a rust covered cage.
I will keep her there until my selfishness allows me to let you out freely without a need to worry for the lovebird.
Because the only love that can exist in this world of mine is between a fox and a canary.
It’s an idiots fantasy like that naïve little lovebird, that a canary and a lovebird can love each other.
Soon my beautiful canary, that lovebird shall perish without your presence but do not fear,
I shall keep you here with me.
I won’t let nobody taint you.
Fecund gamine enthralls seamen - tackfully
Upon a sofa, huck cupola randy,
seamen sought escapade
testes spawned reaching qua
ova all biological trade
crossed fecund Rubicon
and ejaculated re: sprayed
vasocongested phallus led
coup d’etat draw viz night shade
Ollie Ollie oxen yawping,
in utero seminal raid
erogenous zone torched,
where hello kitty mewed
amidst Grafenberg tit parade
bumping uglies during
four nuke key eight ting game,
where pinkish puckered
frilly labria tarry
la brea tar pits, viz biological
birth control relegated
desuetude Russian roulette played
hotly contested prurient pulsations,
purring kitty frenziedly clawed
viz faux pas seminal goop
to seed fruit carnal feral plain -
via blitzkrieg overlaid,
whence hosannas sung
praising slimy prickly nightshade
gnome hatter shy ham mull
in gave way to blast ta cyst
vis a visa viz biological fertilization
qua two plump milkmaid
inchoate seeds juiced beginning
to cum into make lemonade
per diem mother's
umbilical cord fueled gestation,
where sonogram showed
faint genetic threnody skein
perchance manifold offspring
more precious than jade
nope – no fallacy, when peppy
thrust with sucks esse full feint
after thwarting, spritzing, and
reconnoitering penile objection
nonetheless skin flute charmed,
thence didst invade
which conception begot,
thence chromosomal traits stitched
via mom jeans,
and pops faction trumpeting handmaid
din fecund glob began to swell
as biological reproduction
showed no uterine back grade
as Tabula rasa In utero endured
missile payload ejaculated
flagellated into mossy ever glade
sustenance promulgated noticeable
womb expansion fusillade
of nutriments ordaining
future health of progeny
riddling endless questions
within naughty gallimaufry
physical fatigue enfilade,
and spiritual state of momma
mia in family way,
whereby baby blueprint,
an outcome as nano sized atomic
itty bitty teensy weensy improvised
explosive device scoured decades
to determine ontological makeup
from when fluid dynamics
since time immemorial
perpetuating humanity's future cascade
eminent grise immaculate kindred
exiting cervix laminated
with waxy substance
i.e. vernix, though smooth
doth serve analogous
to microscopic switch-blade
and cheers to motherhood,
especially when home birth
and doula as the sole aid.
The U Turn 01:21
No, things became dynamic across the streets. The conversation splintered, maybe because of the way her mind worked, or maybe because someone also had a natural inclination and had noted it in her, too and decided to bet on it (for, or against?).
A sort of ventriloquism of Things began. Of Things. Not people.
It was the way the taxicab passed certain signs and billboards. Marquees would read Stock Needed, and in her conscious she registered "royalty free photography, please." Musta been the graphic training in her and lack of prurience that took no perverse in the registry, just the face value, that inspiration pieces were needed somewhere in the Universe, and if there was need, she could, if she wanted, fill it. Easily.
And she answered, by email in the back of the cab, sending a bewildered recipient some well cropped images with the notation, "all photos mine, use as you wish." Animalia, work tools, fragmented portraits, hands because she remembered vaguely that hands and feet were specifically requested.
She could even now feel him shaking his head and clucking his tongue at one so... so errantly programmable. He shook his head, but grinned, nevertheless.
It's like she's something of mind, but somehow lost.
The U Turn 01:15
At first Nothing happened.
Huh. She was visibly disappointed; he could see in the rear-view mirror, and he couldn't help but um, smirk, as he watched on his monitor just passed the steering wheel. She had cracked open the lapdog and was typing a misguided email with charming quasi sophistication: "Wuv, the net capsule you sent arrived as expected but I'm afraid it doesn't seem to be working; or at least, I haven't noticed anything yet on my end."
He pursed his lips to try to keep from being too obvious in his amusement and awaited the response while whistling to himself. He knew it would be a long time coming, and when it did, it would need be cryptic by necessity, because how does a rational non-party reply to something co-conspiratorial like that? He watched the letters fall as she rode and wrote of her day. Who was she writing to? and what would be the answer—
He let her off and she walked in a rain of fireflies to a place that wasn't home, but was endearingly called her place, under the wooden stairs. When she disappeared from sight, momentarily there was a hush and night.
She opened the laptop again. Then he heard it. Better than music. His ears were flooded, with the singing of canaries.
His eyes adjusted to the dark. She really did live in the basement.