Wednesday, March 25, 2009

the place without stories

Is there a place without stories?

Today, at the dump, I got into a conversation with the fellow who was tending things. We started with a rain barrel that was for sale, segued into the inefficiency of gutters and flat roofs, and along the way chatted about the small Kansas town he had grown up in -- the one that had never been attacked by a tornado since its inception shortly after the Civil War ... not until 2003-2004 anyhow. And what made him leave home? "Uncle Sam called me here, I went out on a blind date, and here I am sixty years later," he said.

Outside the 7-11-type store, a man lounging in a bit of sunshine told me he was waiting for his daughter who had borrowed his truck in order to tag along with one of the doctors who worked in the hospital across the street. He was waiting and didn't know when he would get a ride (though I offered him one). It was all worth it because his daughter was a go-getter, someone entranced by micro-biology, a person who would nag the teachers for answers and explanations. "She's worth the wait," he said.

Where is there a place without stories, whether spoken or unspoken? The highest mountains, the most austere deserts, the crowded supermarket, the edgeless ocean ... where is there a place without stories?

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