03 July 2012

broadway, 42 (el buho-gatito)

july 3rd owl-cat, scared shitless in a shit-safe-space. pobrechhhhito. above him were 6 sharp-beaked parrots, red and yellow and blue and illegal most likely on this stretch of broadway. i was walking on the other side of the street but crossed when two blocks away i said what the fuuuck is going on over there?! parrots: should they be in the same family as doves, egrets, woodpeckers? not really sure why they're not considered dinosaurs - maybe they are. i'll ask bill nye. above the kitten, the shrieking parrots, who were beyond tone-deaf, screaming in a timbre that induces crippling anxiety, lay a teenage girl, her long legs and short-shorts and hair-done-did draped over a stack of bird feed about 15 feet in the air, texting. she seemed calm amidst the chaos, and told me the kittens had been found that morning, and that the parrots shit more than god. she wore big gold hoops, was kind of working, kind of just keeping her father, on the computer, company. her father was a white dude from brooklyn, she was cocoa. i could tell she wanted to talk more or at least maybe just needed a buddy at some point during the 8 hours she was hanging in the pet store; a buddy who did not shriek, meow, shit, or bark, and who had a face, not a telephone number. maybe she was the oldest of her siblings? i could have seen that. i wondered who she was texting and if the kittens would be ok in the future and envisioned the kittens in the cage with the parrots who were at this point kind of dancing with each other inside the cage, joined at the beaks as if in an old fashioned knife fight, where only one hand is free. in this case they were attached at the knife and their wings were free. i stood there in the middle of the store for longer than i needed to, yelling up at the girl, making inane banter, figuring out how i could take photos of the parrots if they were illegal, and wanting to take all three of the kittens home or at least to hold all three at the same time and call them the names they should be called. it smelled like bird feed inside and everything was out of place on that stretch of broadway. chinese dollar stores, shady post-offices, pitbull puppies and women in streetwear pajamas. i was not sure how anything in that store had come to be! the girl spoke to me of a kimodo dragon, too, but i can't remember now if she said she had one or she knew of a person who kept one in their apartment without the landlord ever finding out. the last time i was in that store, last Fall, i had a different camera, and in the bird cages were only small, sunflower-yellow parakeets who made the most noise when their wings fluttered frantically inside the cages; do you know that sound? it's that sound of air being moved back and forth in a confined space, with nowhere to go. the design is almost an instrument, a bird inside of a ventilated steel cage, but it's just a dust-up of displaced air, a temporary fan, produced by the highly agitated motor of a creature with a stifled wingspan.

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