rejectomorph (flying_blind) wrote,

Reset the Second, Day the Seventh

The only May Day event I can recall attending was at my intermediate school. I can't remember if it was sixth, seventh or eighth grade, but a vivid memory of a particular moment has surfaced in my mind. We were sitting in a set of bleachers attached to the back of the auditorium of the old school building which had been condemned after the 1933 earthquake but left standing for use as a storage facility. The bleachers faced south, and the southern California sun was hot that day, as it often is there by the beginning of May.

A Maypole had been set up in the playground in front of the bleachers, and I remember watching a group of girls weaving around it with colored streamers as recorded music played. They made a few mistakes in their pattern, but when they were done the pole was completely covered in a bright weave of colors. It's odd that I can see the pole and the girls dancing and feel the heat of the sun and even smell the slightly smoggy spring air, but I can't hear the music in my memory. All I can recall is that it sounded very tinny coming from the small speakers of a portable record player, and was quickly swallowed up by the open air.

Memory is such a strange thing, but then it is part of reality and reality is strange. I recall sitting there watching the flawed pattern forming on the Maypole, but any thoughts I had at that time have vanished as completely as that recorded music. Whatever those thoughts were, I suspect that they were sad, as the feelings I recall having had at the time were melancholy. Perhaps I am only projecting my current mood back onto that moment, but I don't think I am. I remember remembering that moment before, and I'm sure I remembered my feelings the same way then. It's likely that I have simply always been prone to melancholy.

The fan is whirring right now, trying to cool the apartment. The sound of it arouses further feelings of melancholy. The freeway has fallen nearly silent, only occasional cars and trucks passing. The world feels empty again. A sliver of moon shows through the bush on the back fence, and seems no farther away than the town, or no nearer. I'm thinking about sleeping, though I don't really want to sleep. It's just that if I stay awake I'll continue to be engulfed in this empty night, and be aware of it. I'll probably still be engulfed when I'm asleep, but I won't have to be aware of it. I might try reading something. If that makes me forget where I am I might fall asleep without knowing it. Then I won't have to think about it. I like not thinking. Thinking wears me out.

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