Alan Devenish: Project: Candy: Untitled
Looked down upon creation and saw a red curtained glass and through and into the room. Sally sat sadly with a just eaten lunch and felt warm from the room. Beside her was a wooden cabinet filled with wine glasses that tinkled if she moved on the wooden floor. A touch of her foot on this wooden floor wood would shake the cabinet enough to make a pleasant ringing sound that softly rattled and tinkled into a hum.
Her children played noisily in the next room and she sent them out so she could make love. The children were starting to be not so young and were a boy, eight, and a girl, ten. The girl never for a moment forgot she was ten. But she believed she might really be eleven, she was anxious to count the time in utero.
They walked down tree-lined streets. Every street that has trees may evoke this street but none would be this street; this particular street had broad light green leaves sprouting audaciously from greybrown branches hacked back by city workers. Sap trickled salaciously from sunworn wounds and the low branches the children used to reach to climb were gone.
Restaurants that stayed open late were closed because it was too early. It was the afternoon after lunch and nobody wanted to eat or even be out of doors. The children noticed the lull like a nearly conscious aversion and were accordingly sobered. Levity came with the ascent to the top of a slide.
A splendid swinging back and forth on the swing set sent Sally’s young daughter higher and higher into the air. She could not see clearly, her view was obscured. These thick broad light green leaves crowded and obscured but she could still see. She could see into the window of the house across the street. It was an old couple visiting with their daughter. The father was very nearly catatonic and the daughter blamed her mother.
Sally’s daughter observed only that there were three people in the room. Her younger brother had desisted from pushing her—she had insisted he push her—and joined her swinging higher and higher, back and forth, till the chains went slack with each swing as the swings swung above the bar that held the chains.
Growing restless they sailed clear of their swings and strolled back to a tree-lined street and down to the corner, mutually thrilled by Sally’s daughter’s suggestion of ice cream (she held in a small pocket sewn to her dress’ waist money from Sally). They had walked the block and crossed and looking back on the side where they hadn’t walked, opposite the park and the swing set, they could see the ice cream cart parked.
The ice cream man was not there but the cart was there. There was a brief children’s debate and Sally’s daughter resolved to remove ice cream and leave money. The ice cream man was not there at all. Sally’s daughter tugged the handle, and placed her hand against the cold door for leverage and tugged again; it opened; there was nothing there.