Stories Straight from the Shoulder

Fall                                           Waning Back to School Moon

Writing bounces up off city streets, whizzes down from building tops and comes straight from the shoulder of each person on the street.  Each person walks by trailing a life time of stories, agony, love, joy, despair, fear, exultation.  I can feel them as I wander these streets of Chicago, these stories.  They make a walk thick with meaning and feeling, so many stories walking past each other, not knowing the narrative of the other.  We are a universe, those of us walking here on Wabash Avenue under the el.

Each building has a story, too.  The ambition of the people who conceived it, the gritty world of those who built it and the disconnected worlds of those who inhabit it.   Theodore Dreiser found a compelling story in the elevated railroads and the tycoon who built them  The Haymarket riot.  Saul Alinsky.  Rockefeller and the founding of the University of Chicago.

No wonder stories fall off the trees here like ripe fruit.

I’ve not had enough time here.  I need a week, maybe two, a chance to slow down and make my pace synch with the city, not feel rushed by the train, by getting here and there, having those movements compressed by the demands of travel on, headed somewhere else.

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